Forest to Fork Experience
Owned and cared for by the Grant family for over 500 years, Rothiemurchus is the jewel of the Cairngorms National Park and has been recognized throughout history as a special place for its beauty, magnificent pine forests and abundant wildlife.
Consistent with Government policy, Rothiemurchus carries out a cull of native wild Red and Roe deer, keeping nature in balance and conserving the natural heritage of the land. On this experience, you will go behind the scenes at Rothiemurchus. You will learn more about why and how wild deer numbers are kept in balance, learn how this is done in a humane way, and assist in conducting the conservation cull.
You will be led and accompanied by our bio-diversity manager, Peter Ferguson. Peter has worked on Rothiemurchus for many years and is from a local family. He knows the ancient forest and nearby glens like the back of his hand. Peter will regale guests with stories of the local characters, the history of the estate, and also tell his guests all about the local flora and fauna and be able to answer questions. Peter will also be able to explain and demonstrate to guests why venison from Rothiemurchus is sustainable, guests will be able to see the low number of food miles involved, as well as learning about traceability.
Aimed to be an accessible stalking experience, Peter whisks you away in his Land Rover The day is completely tailored to your preference. Peter will take guests out at dawn, this is when the deer are lower down in the hills and at their most active. The weather is the main decider on where you’ll go on the estate. A clearer day allows for a further trek into the various glens. Poorer weather will take you to the lower down woodland options. Either way, there will be an option suitable for the group to get a real taste for stalking.
After the guided stalk, Peter will take his guests to experience shooting a rifle in a controlled environment. Taking turns everyone will get a shot at taking aim at the target and releasing the trigger under Peter’s close guidance.
Guests will then move on to visit the venison larder. Any deer shot on the estate is recovered to the larder. It’s here that the initial processing begins and the meat is matured for several days before butchery. Next up is a meet and greet with the estate’s in-house master-butcher Brian Dey at the Butchery unit. To demonstrate the butchery, Brian will use a deer shot earlier which has been sufficiently matured to show how to extract and handle the best cuts from the carcass. You will learn about why Rothiemurchus Venison has such a wonderful reputation and Brian will tell you about the different names and types of the various cuts, the preparation of the meat and which cuts are best suited to which types of cooking.