What a weekend!
Tipton did not disappoint. First and foremost-the food was amazing, both in the quality and the quantity. Second, the weather was absolutely perfect. Not too hot, nor too cold. If there was wind, we didn’t feel it. Blue skies. Just a top ten day. I guess I should mention the hunting because that’s why we went
Saturday the hounds -Huntsman Dave brought an all bitch pack-roused up a coyote and the sounds of the hounds resonating through the trees is simply beautiful. The field didn’t view, but the road whips saw the coyote 3 times! The field did view the coyote at the very end, when Huntsman Dave and the hounds were crossing the Runway (a huge field that many trailers park in and we gather for the stirrup cup). He was thumbing his paw at the hounds.
If you’ve never been to Tipton, it’s beautiful country and so different than the Plains of Nebraska and Iowa that we typically ride across. We ride about 50% of the time single file through the trees, crossing multiple water crossings of various widths and depths and all of the crossings are very rocky. We wind through the trees on paths and sometimes we track through the trees picking a path much like the pioneers of old. Uphill and downhill with the footing changing from rocky to muddy to a thick layer of fallen leaves.
We emerge out of the forest and gallop across big fields of either row crops, CRP or grass hay fields. There are coops scattered through out, but also a gate right next to each coop, so everyone can get around easily.
We hunted for two hours and then gathered at Tom and Lyse’s beautiful starter castle for a fabulous, tasty lunch that Lyse and Tom catered. Two different types of pasta, salad and a ginormous variety of delectable deserts. Mind you, this was about 5 hours after a huge breakfast of quiche, bacon, sausage, muffins, croissants….
It was such a beautiful day, Helen went for a leisurely ride, some went for a walk, others gathered outside to just hang out and enjoy each others company.
About 5 hours later we all gathered at Jim and Susan McNutt’s house for —more food.
Daylight savings was making a comeback, so an early night was planned by many. In fact, it was almost a race to see who could leave the earliest.
Sunday was another bright and sunny day, starting off a bit crisper. Huntsman Dave took us through the larger stream crossing. We haven’t crossed it in a couple of years due to all the heavy rains the past seasons. We all remembered a few riders that have taken some dunkings in that stream over the years. This year everyone passed with flying colors.
We were just entering the forest when I heard Holly Barrett saying that a horse was running away with his rider. I stopped and there were about 5 riders behind me and we made enough of a trail block that the horse had to slow down, giving the rider the opportunity to stop him and jump off. She did an excellent job of staying on, guiding the best she could and making a quick dismount.
I took her back to the trailers and switched out bridles, giving her a little more whoa. Over the radio I could hear that the hounds had hit hard on a coyote and were leaving a trail of flames and smoke behind them as they chased that coyote right out of the country…..
It was a great time to take my new member on a ride and experience the beauty of Tipton and to regroup after her first try at hunting.
All the hounds were retrieved and we once again sat down to eat. This time sheppard’s pie, mac n cheese, salad and abundance of desserts, compliments of Lyse and Tom.
We all rolled our way to our trailers. Do you know how hard it is to drive 4+ hours home on a full stomach?
This weekend we are hunting Saturday at our kennel country and Sunday at Cumberland.
Friday, March 20 we have a Padded Pony quilting fund raiser/fun time scheduled. Please RSVP to me if you’re interested in going. Monies will go to buy more GPS collars for the hounds. We had a great time last year at our Painted Pony night. We hope to repeat it with this years quilting event.
Carine, NHH Honorary Secretary