Fox Hunting Life with Horse and Hound

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IMG_4911The Shawnee Hounds set out into big, open country for a tiring day in the mud. (Foreground) Master and huntsman Dr. Mark Smith, (background, l-r) Lee Carson, Courtney Carson and guest Jeffie McAfoo  /  Sue Brandt photoThe Shawnee Hounds (IL) Mannings fixture was challenging to hunt this day—substantial ditches, wide open fields that were muddy and quickly sapped the horses' strength, and large wheat fields that had to be circumnavigated to stay in the farmers' good graces. This made it difficult for the whippers-in as well as those who had to stay further out in order to not lose the pack on a big run. The large woods that we normally would avoid due to being leased by deer hunters were open now that deer season was over.

This hunt was further challenged by too much of a good thing—lots of coyotes! They were everywhere, and I doubt I can remember all the views of different coyotes seen and by whom.

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