Party Like a Southerner: The Floating Duck Camp

Each fall, this movable sportsman’s retreat ferries hunters into the marshlands

Photo: Brie Williams


The Floating Duck Camp
Golden Meadow, Louisiana

Come duck season, Tony Nelson’s tricked-out barge—part yacht, part houseboat, part wing-shooting lodge—plays host to a steady stream of hunting buddies. “We’ve designed plenty of hunting camps where we had to accommodate big groups,” says the Birmingham, Alabama, architect Tom Adams, who, with his partner Adam Gerndt, oversaw the project. “But figuring out a self-sustaining floating camp took a different level of thinking.” Floor hatches reveal compartments that house a soundproof generator room and storage for food and drink. “The only thing we have to buy during the season is produce and bread,” says the camp’s caretaker, Jimmy Green.

On the main level, there’s a kitchen, bar, and sitting area; a poker table, bunks, and entertainment centers are upstairs. There’s even a porch with rocking chairs. Each season, a boat tows the entire vessel right into the marshlands. Guides and guests pile into mud boats and depart the mother ship in search of gadwalls, blues, wigeon, mallard, pintail, and black ducks. Then it’s an easy ride back for cocktail hour, which starts promptly at 5:00 p.m. “When you are out here in the middle of nowhere,” Nelson says, “you get to know each other pretty well.”7