After two brutally hot days of foxhound performance trials at Millbrook, the weather finally broke. The next stop on our Hark Forward Friendship Tour was a day’s foxhunting with the Golden’s Bridge Hounds (NY), about twenty miles southeast of Millbrook as the crow flies. Thankfully, the temperature had dropped by fifteen degrees. Hounds met at 7:30 am, scenting had definitely improved, and so had the game activity.
Trying something new, I took my digital recorder to record the important snippets of the action and my impressions of the day. This is the same recorder we use to score the hounds in the hound trials. Since it’s hard to remember everything that happens during a foxhunt, I wanted to make the all the action and impressions of the day come alive. Here goes:
Foxhounds from five hunts faced off for the second Performance Trial of the Hark Forward season. The trials were hosted by the Millbrook Hunt in their scenic and mountainous country in the Hudson River valley of New York State, just ten miles west of the Connecticut border, ninety miles north of New York City.
Hounds met on Monday and Tuesday, September 25 and 26, 2017 under conditions reminiscent of mid-summer rather than the early days of autumn. Temperatures rose well into the eighties on both days as riders sweltered and hounds struggled to find quarry in the usually productive coverts. Yet hounds worked as a veteran pack and displayed outstanding work during their brief moments of action.
Each competing hunt had selected the seven-and-a-half couples of hounds from their kennels to best represent them. The thirty-seven-and-a-half couples of proven hounds melded quickly into a single pack (more about that later), reflecting positively on every huntsman: Bart Poole from the Essex Fox Hounds (NJ); Marion Thorne, Genesee Valley Hunt (NY); Codie Hayes, Golden’s Bridge Hounds (NY); Don Philhower, Millbrook Hunt; and Sean Cully, Rose Tree-Blue Mountain Hounds (PA).
Foxhounds weren’t the only newsmakers at the Virginia Foxhound Show. A few people were worth noting as well!
Three individuals were introduced for induction into the Huntsmen’s Room of the Museum of Hounds and Hunting in ceremonies on Saturday evening. Before dinner under the tent, Jake Carle, ex-MFH, spoke eloquently, reverently, and at the right times humorously about the three men who have hunted hounds with distinction for many years: C. Martin Wood, III, MFH, Live Oak Hounds (FL), G. Marvin Beeman, MFH, Arapaho Hunt (CO), and the late Jim Atkins who hunted hounds for the Piedmont Fox Hounds, Old Dominion Hounds, and the Warrenton Hunt, all in Virginia.
During a joint meet with the Windy Hollow Hunt (NY), Codie Hayes of the Golden’s Bridge Hounds (NY) made the ultimate huntsman's sacrifice to encourage reluctant hounds to cross the creek. Did it work? We don’t even want to ask. What more can a huntsman do?
Posted February 4, 2016
Members of the Golden’s Bridge Hounds and the entire community of North Salem, New York, are shocked and in mourning over the slaying of Lois Colley, wife of senior Master Gene Colley and mother of Bruce Colley, MFH. She was found dead in her home on Monday, November 9.
Police believe that Mrs. Colley was bludgeoned to death by a small fire extinguisher, the only object missing from the house. They have asked for help from the community in their search for the suspected murder weapon and other information, but beyond that have not identified a suspect. For a fuller account, see Lisa Foderaro’s article in the New York Times.
Lois Colley was warmly regarded by the community, and was a regular presence at hunt meets, many of which were held at the Colley’s Windswept Farm. She was recently featured in a photograph in Foxhunting Life along with her husband and the Golden’s Bridge mounted field in front of the house.
We extend our sincere sympathies to the Colley family at this terrible time.
Posted November 12, 2015