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Top 5 Summer Activities at The Ford

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With summer officially here, activities are heating up at The Ford Field & River Club. Whether you’re looking forward to venturing out each day to embrace the warm weather or you’re more inclined to spend the sunny quiet afternoons strolling under the shady oaks or kicking back on the porch while the kids run free—The Ford is where everyone can have their perfect summer. 

Below, Mike Womble, Director of Outdoor Pursuits at The Ford, shares some of our members’ favorite ways to stay cool (or embrace the heat) and create summer memories that will last a lifetime.

Pool Days

Solo or with family and friends, days at the Lake Dye Pool are not to be missed. “With kids out of school and adults wanting to take a cooling plunge, we have lots of excitement happening in and near the pool,” says Mike. Plus, the adjacent Lake Dye Grill is open for the season—serving fresh burgers, icy cocktails and more to enjoy poolside.

Summer Camps

In the summer months, The Ford’s staff naturalist Brittany Dodge hosts two-week-long Kids Summer Camps. “During each session, 15 to 20 kids enjoy the pool, learn about nature, make nature-themed crafts, try their hand at golf, create (and eat) fun treats with The Ford’s on-site chef, go fishing and just have a blast being a kid,” says Mike. As for parents—they’ll get days to themselves, followed by tired-out (and happy) kids in the evenings.

Evenings by the Campfire

No summer at The Ford is complete without at least a few evenings under the stars. Head to The Main House and watch the sunset by the pool, fire up s’mores at the Oyster House’s outdoor fire pit, or opt to get a table at the Clubhouse and take in the evening—and the golf course greens—alongside a great meal. Wherever you go, keep your eyes peeled for flickering lightning bugs and listen to the crickets sing—this is what summer dreams are made of.

Crabbing

“All summer long, crabbing for Georgia Blue Crabs is in full swing at the flood gates along Lake Clara,” says Mike. “Huge 6- to 9-inch crabs can be caught at these ‘pinch points’ along the Lake Clara Dike Trail. You can throw out a trap and wait, but the most fun is to take crab lines with chicken necks tied to them and lure the crabs to the surface to net them. Expect hours of fun for the kids and the kids-at-heart in your family.”

Horseback Riding

Exploring The Ford from about five feet off the ground is a spectacular way to enjoy both nature and adventure any time of the year—and summer is no exception. The Ford houses more than 10 miles of bridle trails—explore them on your own horse, borrow one of ours or set out on a guided tour. Make sure to cool off in the Equestrian Center’s comfy members’ lounge after a leisurely ride through the lowcountry.

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4 Fish to Angle for this Summer

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“Summer is a great time to be a fisherman here at The Ford Field & River Club,” says Mike Womble, Director of Outdoor Pursuits at The Ford and a trusted resource on all things angling. “Some of the most sought-after game fish show up in large numbers when the water gets warm around here. Whether you are a fly fisherman or use conventional tackle, you won’t be disappointed with what our waterways have to offer.”  Discover four of the fish species you’ll likely hook this season at or near The Ford.

Sea Trout & Redfish

“Just a short boat ride from The Ford is Ossabaw Sound, which offers the angler numerous fishing opportunities,” says Mike. “Spotted sea trout and redfish are schooling around nearly any small creek mouth or oyster shell bar in the sound—and while live shrimp is the go-to bait to catch these scrappy fighters, they will also greedily take shrimp or crab pattern flies.”

 

Triple Tail

As June arrives, so does the Triple Tail. “A fly fishers dream—these fish have the habit of floating on their side and can be sight-casted to by the fly angler,” notes Mike. “They will also take many different artificial and live baits for the conventional angler. The average size of these little monsters is 5-20 pounds. The great thing about Triple Tails is that they are amazing table fare. Let your Ford guide filet your catch and take it up to our chef at the Clubhouse for an amazingly fresh and tasty meal—prepared to your liking.”

 

Tarpon

“Late June brings the king of all game fish to our coastal waters—including the Tarpon. These giants migrate here and stay around till late September,” says Mike. “Usually caught on live bait like mullet or menhaden, these fish range in size from 50-150+ pounds and will test any angler lucky enough to hook one. Once hooked, these fish make incredibly acrobatic jumps—sometimes reaching 10 feet in the air!  They are the holy grail of sport fishing, for sure. We typically take a picture and release them to fight another day.”

 

Largemouth Bass

“If you would like to stay on property, the Ford offers almost 300 acres of freshwater lakes and ponds to delight the Largemouth Bass angler,” says Mike. “Summer is the best time to catch these fish using topwater lures and flies. During early mornings and late evenings, these tough fish will greedily take a frog pattern, lure or a wounded baitfish lure from the surface and show off when hooked with some amazing acrobatic moves. The average size Largemouth Bass caught at The Ford is between 2-6 pounds, with a few bruisers in the 7-10 pound class caught every summer.”

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VIDEO: Explore The Ford’s World-Class Golf Course

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Golf at The Ford Field & River Club is more than just playing a game—it provides players a one-of-a-kind connection with the unique riverfront setting, one another and the native wildlife. This is no accident, of course. Designed by World Golf Hall of Fame legend Pete Dye in 1987 and redesigned by Dye again in 2014, our 250-acre golf course pays homage to and utilizes the natural surroundings of the Georgia Lowcountry throughout its 18 holes. In this video, Ryan Skipton, PGA and Director of Golf at The Ford, touches on the history of golf at The Ford, why it’s a favorite pastime and much, much more.

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