Fox Hunting Life with Horse and Hound

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Tryon Hounds recently announced the hiring of Beth Blackwell as their new professional huntsman. Blackwell moves to North Carolina over these first few days of September to take over the management and hunting of Tryon’s pack of American foxhounds. She will also hunt a foot pack of Basset hounds.

Blackwell has been a professional staff member for both mounted and foot packs for the last eighteen years. Before hunting professionally, Blackwell was a professional hunter/jumper rider and trainer. She was most recently serving as professional huntsman for the Penn-Marydel pack at the De La Brooke Foxhounds (MD). That hunt now seeks a new huntsman, according to a source.

Blackwell replaces former huntsman Trey Bennett and takes over the Tryon pack for cubhunting on September 10th as that hunt begins its ninetieth season.

Posted September 5, 2016

carolinas15.david traxlerGrand Champion Hillsboro Graphic '14 with professional whipper-in Leilani Hrisko. Judges (l-r) are MFHs Tony Leahy and Dr. Jack Van Nagell / David Traxler photoHillsboro Graphic '14 was judged Grand Champion of Show at the thirty-ninth annual Carolinas Hound Show held at the Springdale Race Course in Camden, South Carolina on May 8 and 9, 2015.

Whelped to royal bloodlines—American on the sire’s side and English on the dam’s side—it should have been no surprise to see Graphic garner top honors. Her sire is Hillsboro Jethro '08, son of the magnificent Potomac Jefferson '05, Grand Champion Foxhound at Virginia in the year of the MFHA Centennial celebration, 2007.

On the dam’s side, Graphic goes back in tail female to North Cotswold Grapefruit '95, a Peterborough Champion and dam of several influential foxhounds in North America including Iroquois Grundy '98, Master Jerry Miller’s all-time favorite foxhound, and Mid-Devon Grocer '00, sire of Virginia and Bryn Mawr champion hounds from Blue Ridge.

Foxhounds from fourteen hunts and five states trod the flags at Carolinas: Aiken, Camden, DeLa Brooke, Green Creek, Hillsboro, Keswick, Lowcountry, Moore County, Red Mountain, Sedgefield, Tennessee Valley, Tryon, Whiskey Road, and Why Worry.

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jordan hicks.tryon.erik olsenHuntsman Jordan Hicks moves from the Tryon Hounds to the Piedmont Fox Hounds / Erik Olsen photoAs we approach the close of the 2014/2015 foxhunting season, here’s our report on thirteen hunts that have either hired or will require a new huntsman for next season. We have already featured personal close-ups of three of the migrating huntsmen—Guy Allman, Brian Kiely, and Graham Buston—and we plan to bring you more.

We invite readers to fill us in on any moves that we’ve missed. We also invite you to send us a personal profile on any of these huntsmen that we can publish as a feature article. Or, just send us the information, and we’ll write the story. Use the “Contact Us” link that appears at the bottom of every screen to communicate directly with me, and be sure to include your phone number.

What follows is foxhunting’s version of musical chairs.

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katherine wedsKatherine Gunter and John Dunbar were married on June 9, 2012, at Tybee Island, Georgia.

Katherine has been huntsman for the Aiken Hounds (SC) for the past four seasons. Prior to Aiken, she was professional staff at the Whiskey Road Foxhounds (SC) and the Bear Creek Hounds (GA).

John laid the drag for Aiken Hounds for much of this past season, riding western! John's family owns and operates a large cotton farm east of Aiken, and both share a love of fishing and hunting. Katherine and John met through foxhunting friends, Danielle Sertick and Todd Martineau, who will also be married later this summer.

Katherine and John were married on the beach at Tybee with fifty family and friends in attendance. Katherine's bridesmaids were foxhunting friends Mary Taylor Miller (whipper-in for Middleburg Hunt), Ria Burton (whipper-in for Aiken), Christine Raley (wife of Moore County huntsman David Raley), Danielle Sertick (whipper-in for Aiken) and Alison Brown (rider and trainer).

The couple honeymooned in the Florida Keys where they went deep sea fishing for five days. Shortly thereafter they went on another fishing trip off the North Carolina coast with Tony Gammell, huntsman for the Keswick Hunt (VA), Jordan Hicks, huntsman for the Tryon Hounds (NC), and Adrian Smith, huntsman for the Metamora Hunt (MI). Pretty good summer for the newlyweds so far!

Posted July 22, 2012

Linda Knox McLean is MFH of the Aiken Hounds.

IMG_0011-3Marge Warder and Monty, Opening Meet, Tryon Hounds, 2005  /  Erik Olsen photoMarge Warder has had a lifelong love affair with horses. As a child, riding was her favorite activity.

She traveled the world as a stewardess with Pan American Airways and lived the big-city life in New York.

After retirement, she moved to North Carolina, resumed her life with horses, and joined the Tryon Hounds and the Green Creek Hounds.

Last year, at the age of seventy, Marge Warder fell off her horse Monty. Something was wrong. A few months later she was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease (amyotropic lateral sclerosis, ALS). She moved into an assisted living home near her sister Carrie Bartlett in Louisiana. She decorated her room with horse stuff and told stories of her foxhunting adventures. She shared one heartfelt wish with a social worker visiting the home. She wanted to ride a horse one last time.

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