What a gorgeous day for hunting. We started at 8:30 at Ed Fry’s Fair Hill Stables in Chestertown, Md. I was running a bit late and my day started off a bit rocky when I went to touch the butt bar and Dixie kicked me in the hand. It was partially my fault because I was in a hurry and did not give him enough warning but he got in trouble regardless! I am sure everybody was staring at me but oh well horses need manners and he forgot his.
The farm is a big dairy farm that backs up to lots of other farms. Lots of open land and woods. The hounds were casted in the woods and we followed right behind the whips for a while and had some good trots and canters. Dixie hadn’t been ridden all week as I had something as close to strep throat as you can get. No swallowing for 4 days in a row and I just felt horrible. My friend’s horse was being a bit of a butthead bucking and kicking which was upsetting Dixie. Dixie was doing a super job of listening but was sure he was getting kicked and was upset. We were going up and down hills and across tiny tiny bridges (scary!). He did let out a buck once and I let him know that was unacceptable. I think he was watching her horse too closely! He has never ever bucked before. 30 min into the day he was as relaxed as could be.
We went up to wait for the hounds to come up and standing there we saw three foxes come out of the woods and under run under the power lines. The hounds were in the woods working but we think there were so many fox they were confused. Many times the hounds were splitting and it was hard to keep them together.
We were really moving around all day and sometimes we followed right behind the hounds and we got to see them chasing a fox which was amazing. Dixie does really well with the hounds but he did get spooked when one came up behind him in the woods. I didn’t see it or I would have turned him to face it. He gets anxious and sometimes acts like he wants to kick. I would be sure to discipline him if he did but he has not so far. I try to watch for the hounds and make sure to turn away from them.
I believe there were a total of eight fox spotted. There were fox running everywhere. We were out for about 2.5 hrs? It was a beautiful day and I was super pleased with Dixie. He got better at standing today especially as the day went on. He really listens well and does not care if he is leading or following which is very nice.
Some pics: note this groups is super informal. Most people ride in jeans and chaps.
Dixie and his clip job-
The master and one of the whip’s behind him
Riding into the woods
Standing and listening to the hounds
These are the power lines where seven fox were spotted crossing from one group of woods to another. I am told there is a fox in this picture but I did not expect anybody would take pictures today so I only had my short lense on.
I also joined a formal hunt (Wicomico) and they will be cubbing at the C&R center on Wednesday which is 5 min from my house. I am thinking I might be sick that day 🙂 I am planning on taking my other horse (Indy) out on Tuesday. I think he will love it as much as Dixie does.