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Latest Foxhunting Articles

Me and Norm Photo by Allison Howell

A Sea of Uncertainty

Me and Norm Photo by Allison HowellNorman Fine and myself at the Virgina Hound Show. Photo by Allison Howell.

It’s a question that most of us in the hunt field have to face – Are my riding days over? This is a question that has been forefront of my mind for the past three years. As I have gotten closer to another surgery to add yet another set of metal bars under my skin, I have been trying to come to grips with the idea of never riding again. And that conclusion has felt like an amputation.

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Vixen Meet Field

A Meet of Vixens and One Scarlet Fox

 

Vixen Meet FieldThe Vixen Meet Fields. Photo by John Wilkoski.

I jumped at the chance when I was asked to join the committee to plan and execute the third annual Mr. Stewart’s Cheshire Vixen Meet in Pennsylvania. I was thrilled to be on a hunt committee for the first time and had some big ideas brewing almost immediately. Luckily, my fellow committee members had the same big ideas to make this Vixen Meet bigger and better than ever before. The goal to make our Vixen Meet a destination, rather than just a one-day event, drove us to think big and think fabulous.  We rallied the troops from our hunt community to pull off such a big endeavor. 

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Grace

The Poodle and the Disabled Hen

 

GraceThe Mugshot of the Vegas Poultry Hitman, Grace. Photo by Renee Daniels.

Last March, five of us left Reno, Nevada with several horses and hounds from five different western hunts to drive four days to reach North Carolina to compete in the Performance Hound Trials Championships. The first night we stopped in Las Vegas, as Vegas is actually an 8-hour drive from Reno. We had booked a horse hotel for all the horses, and the hounds would stay in the trailer on the property. The horse hotel was less than a mile from the strip, which was a bit surreal to think about.

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FHL Photo by Dominique Morrison

Choose Your Own Adventure!

 FHL Photo by Dominique MorrisonThe Fields of the Junior North American Field Hunter Championships ride by with the venue in the background. Photo by Dominique Morrison.

Four Juniors from Fort Leavenworth Hunt in Kansas had a dream of competing on the national level at this year’s Junior North American Field Hunter Championship in Tennessee. The Championship included a mock hunt on the first day with an individual round on the second day for the top riders. Also included were opportunities to compete in hound judging, horn blowing, and whip cracking. The Kansas Juniors’ preparations took the kids and their parents on an adventure that showered them all with not only knowledge but also increased respect for the sport of Riding to Hounds.

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De La Brookes Foxhounds Dude at Maryland Performance Trial held in January 2023 Photo by Andrew Muro

Over the Cane

De La Brooke Foxhounds Dude at Maryland Performance Trial held in March 2023. Photo by Andrew Muro. Such a lovely example of a Penn-Marydel in De La Brooke Foxhounds’ Dude.  Not only is he a handsome fellow, but he would make a very nice show jumper with those tight knees!   Originally published on April 3, 2023  
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M Beautiful Photo Hounds Hunting

The Inaugural All Maryland MFHA Performance Trials

M Beautiful Photo Hounds HuntingThe combined pack.  Photo by Tisa Della Volpe Photography. 

On March 4 & 5th 2023, Wicomico Hunt Club hosted the first ever All Maryland Masters of the Foxhounds Association (“MFHA”) Performance Trials on Wye Island. This performance trial brought together not just Penn-Marydel hounds (as in prior years), but the full chorus/compliment of diversity found in Free State packs: crossbred and American hounds.

Fun Fact: the first foxhounds in the Americas were brought to the colony of Maryland by Robert Brooke in the mid-1600s, making Maryland the cradle of foxhunting in America.

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Grand Canyon Rainbow over Beer Can Fixture Photo by Mary Williamsjpg

Rainbow Over The Last Hunt for Grand Canyon Hounds

Grand Canyon Rainbow over Beer Can Fixture Photo by Mary WilliamsjpgRainbow over the Beer Can Fixture of Grand Canyon Hounds on the morning of their last hunt. Photo by Mary Williams.

The Grand Canyon Hounds of Flagstaff, Arizona had their last Closing Meet this March. Paul Delaney has been the Master of this hunt since its beginning in the early 2000s.  It has been one of the few "Western Hunts" and was the only recognized hunt in Arizona. Peter Wilson was the Professional Huntsman. Mary Williams, the Honorary Secretary, took this poignant photo of a rainbow seemingly ending at the water tower affectionately nicknamed "Beer Can".

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Mia JR Lobby

No Land Means No Hunting – Junior Members Lobby For Land Conservation

 

Mia Valdez is a 15-year-old Junior Member of the Keswick Hunt Club and member of the Mountain Skyline Pony Club.  She has an impressive resume of lobbying her state government not once, but twice.  Below is her account of the day.

 Mia JR LobbyVirginia Hunts Juniors met with First Lady Suzanne Youngkin and Representative Buddy Fowler. Photo by Joseph Svetina.

Photo: Virginia Hunts Juniors met with First Lady Suzanne Youngkin and Representative Buddy Fowler. Photo by Joseph Svetina.

The topic of this year’s Junior Foxhunting Day was land conservation and how the Virginia Department of Wildlife and Resources supports the efforts of many hunt clubs within the state. The importance of maintaining open spaces, the involvement of Juniors, and educating the general public about foxhunting were all discussed.

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jfhc 2 Photo by Dominique Morrison

A Celebration of the Sport for Juniors

 jfhc 2 Photo by Dominique MorrisonThe 2023 Junior North American Field Hunter Championship. Photo by Dominique Morrison.

“The future of our sport and land”

The Junior North American Field Hunter Championship, or JNAFHC, founders Douglas Wise-Stuart, MFH of Old Dominion Hounds, and Iona Pillion from the Blue Ridge Hunt had a dream, “Bring children to new hunting countries and open their eyes to the fact that these playgrounds don’t just happen to be there for them by chance but have been nurtured and conserved for the perpetuation of wildlife, open space, and for those who treasure the natural world.”

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