36 hours, 23 miles, 15+ coops, 4 coyotes!
Hello friends =)
First, I would like to thank my Webmaster April Goettle for helping through my latest technical difficulties-hence the delay in my write up. If you need technical help: phone, ipad, computer, uploads, April is your woman!
The weather forecast for the weekend was going to be beautiful and they were right. What a spectular weekend!
Saturday we (23 riders, including staff)and the NHH hounds headed south from MFH Luke and Sam M house. 50 degrees, no wind to speak of, bright blue skies and the wide open beauty of the Sandhills.
The hounds worked well, it’s so fun to watch them working their way across the big fields. We rode and rode and rode-all the way to the outskirts of the Borrow Pit. The hounds voiced multiple times, but couldn’t sustain a scent and nothing was viewed, but we had so much fun riding!
I have a small confession to make. New member Victoria Kirilloff joined us Saturday morning. Beautifully turned out, including lipstick. She is going to ride first flight. Many thoughts are running through my head-where is the gate group and will I be able to find them when this greenhorn can’t keep up. Thank goodness I kept all those thoughts to myself. That woman can ride! And she’s fun company =) We dubbed ourselves the Magnificant Seven as we galloped all over keeping the hounds and huntsman within visual. We had one ground tester when the horse tried to do a driveby on a coop. The saddle slipped and the rider fell. The saddle was righted and the coop was jumped =)
roading home. Huntsman Dave, whipper-in Jubilee Miller
Sunday morning we hunted from Packards and we’re all feeling that things are going to be hopping. Full moon, all the coyotes should be napping in the sun with a full tummy.=)
We were about 800 yards from the trailers when the hounds started voicing. We took off in full gallop keeping them in sight. They lost the scent, regained the scent, lost the scent. We galloped along watching the hounds as they fanned out across the hills.
Huntsman Dave views a coyote and the lead hound makes a break for the coyote, there is actually a brace and Dolf I has his 4 coyote chasing pack with ours and they break off with one coyote and Dolf stays with him. The rest of us stay with Huntsman Dave and the NHH hounds. We can see them running ahead of us. They eventually have a loss and we regroup atop a hill where we can see for miles. Dolf doesn’t have a radio but Mercedes had dropped her phone into his pocket. Whipper-in Bre O calls him and he has lost his horse–he has dismounted to see what his hounds have put to ground. Typically his horse stands quietly while tied to a tree while Dolf checks on his hounds. Not today. Nero has decided to run with his people and gallops off leaving Dolf to walk back.
Whipper-in MFH Dave K radios in that he has viewed Nero galloping east. I’m thinking this is the proverbial needle in the haystack. What are the chances of finding a horse out here?!?! When low and behold, Eagel Eye whipper-in Bre sings out “There he is!” He’s in the next field over a hill and galloping east. Mercedes and I ride down the fence, she catches him, I find a let down and somehow Dolf finds us! It must be because I’m so directionly challenged, but it is unbelievable that horses and people can be found in that vastness. Dolf’s horse has broken one rein and Jubilee loans him her belt-a stirrup leather-to substitute as a rein.
After Huntsman Dave has collected all the hounds-with out his horn, no less! He switched trucks at the last minute when leaving the kennels and left his horn in his truck. The hounds have listened so well and the whips are doing an incredible job keeping up with the hounds.
We keep hunting and Huntsman Dave views a coyote! We take off running, he’s whoopin’ up the hounds and they give good chase and we run hard (so hard, my pour fanny is starting to get chaffed). I also became the Huntsman for about 10 seconds when I was unable to stop my horse and ran past the Huntsman and the pocket whip =(
We were unable to keep the line on this coyote, so Huntsman Dave circled around looking to get another chance to find him (he was BIG). TALLY HO! EE Whipper-in Bre has viewed another coyote! Again we follow the hounds, over coops (some pretty knarly ones at that), canyons, some tough riding ensued and my butt is SCREAMING. Praise the Lord, they lost the scent and we were able to walk.
Huntsman Dave called it a day and we returned to the trailers for a picnic lunch. It was a beautiful day to sit outside, eat and rehash the weekend. The hounds worked great, the staff was on their game: Huntsman Dave, Whipper-in’s: MFH Dave K, Bre O, Nancy E, Helen S, Samantha M & Jubilee M and of the course, the wonderful NHH hounds.
My rider of the weekend is Kallie Hainline. She got numerous gates, did some scouting when we were looking for a coop to catch up with the hounds, went up front and helped steady the hounds when they were carrying them through some cover. Thanks, Kallie!
This weekend we are hunting our new Arlington country on Saturday and beagle hunting at Yutan on Sunday. It’s supposed to warm up =)
Carine, NHH Honorary Secretary