In the early Spring of 2012 most grouse moor managers, keepers and indeed letting agent had high hopes for another great grouse shooting season throughout the UK.
Ten weeks later and a combination of very high rainfall and generally much colder weather had severely dented most aspirations to the point where some moors were talking about cancellation.
Despite all the adverse conditions, 2012 turned out to be another very good to record breaking season for a number of moors. The reasons given for this turn around are many but there is no disputing that once again those keepers putting in the extra effort have, on the while, been rewarded with good numbers of grouse.
Once again the issue of medicated grit has been widely discussed and recent advances in grouse medication has helped a number of moors to maintain large populations of over wintering grouse in good condition.
Whether this will be the case in 2013 is still not totally clear but at this stage it is fair to say that expectations in most parts of England â€“ particularly the North Yorks moors, the Dales, Co Durham and Northumberland â€“ as well as the Scottish Borders and some parts of the Highlands, are generally high.
Demand for driven grouse shooting is again strong with a number of well-known large moors already booked up at the time of writing. However there are still some excellent days to be had on some mostly private moors who let a few days each season.