There And Back Again: Foxhunting Friendships Span the Continent

We have just finished the most amazing trip of our lives. Over the course of the season we traveled from the Atlantic to the Pacific. California to Canada. 15,000 miles with horses. Thirteen Hound Performance Trials. Fifteen more Friendship hunts along the way. Twenty-eight different locations. Twenty-eight unique experiences. Our overall mission was to “Wave the flag of foxhunting all across America.” What a great gig! We love this great sport! Representing the MFHA in so many locations was truly an honor and a privilege!

Penn-Marydels Overcome Windy Conditions at Wicomico Performance Trial

The latest MFHA Hark Forward Hound Performance Trial, hosted by Wicomico Hunt in Chestertown, Maryland, started in a whirlwind. Literally, Winter Storm Riley brought wind gusts over 70 mph, which resulted in travel restrictions on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, and overturned tractor trailers that closed I-95 to the north. Many participants were delayed more than a day with the high winds and traffic problems. Jan Sorrells, MFH, Sedgefield Hunt (NC), and I, representing Bull Run Hunt (VA) and Marlborough Hunt (MD), two of the five judges, had decided to come a day early due to the wind warnings.

Belle Meade Performance Trials: Beginners' Luck, or Great Hounds?

January 19th and 20th marked the 16th annual Belle Meade Performance Trials, as well as the seventh performance trials of the Hark Forward initiative. Six hunts and 42 hounds entered, including two hunts competing in performance trials for the first time. Midland Fox Hounds (GA), Bull Run Hunt (VA) and, of course, Belle Meade Hunt (GA) represented the “returning royalty” for this annual event. Newcomers were the Saxonburg Hunt of Saxonburg, PA and Aiken, SC, and Whiskey Road Foxhounds (SC).

A Huntsman Reflects on Inaugural Drag Performance Trials

As the huntsman of a nearly 100-year-old drag pack in the Pacific Northwest, Woodbrook Hunt Club (WA), I was honored to have the chance to hunt with Belle Meade Hunt (GA) and judge the Drag Performance Trials organized by Aiken Hounds (SC) in Belle Meade's hunt country. Traveling from Seattle-Tacoma International airport to Augusta, Georgia took up an entire day, but the journey was eased when we settled in with our very welcoming hosts, Epp Wilson, MFH, Belle Meade, Judith Craw, and the farm dogs Marty, Gracie, and Dusty at Wilson's Foxboro Farm.

Tejon Hounds Host Thrilling Performance Trials

The Hark Forward initiative invites foxhunters across the continent to join together and strengthen our community, no matter geographic distance, style of hunting, type of country, or nature of quarry. Tejon Hounds' (CA) Performance Trials last week were an outstanding example of interstate camaraderie, rivalry, education, and plain thrilling hunting in the vast open territory of the Tejon Ranch. Hounds from Red Rock Hounds (NV), Big Sky Hounds (MT), Santa Ynez Valley Hounds (CA), Santa Fe West Hills Hunt (CA) competed, and Juan Tomas (CA) brought hounds for one day of Tejon's hunt week.

A Huntsman Reflects, Part Two

Jennifer Hansen, Woodbrook Hunt (WA) huntsman, concludes her report on judging at the Drag Performance Trials earlier this year in Georgia. She was particularly impressed by the special challenges of laying the scent line so that judges would have opportunities to observe and score hounds through the day.

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