The Chronicle of the Horse
MagazineNewsHorse SportsHorse CareCOTH StoreVoicesThe Chronicle UntackedDirectoriesMarketplaceDates & Results
 
Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec. 19, 2008
    Location
    Where The Snow Flies
    Posts
    2,423

    Default Getting into Hunting - Where to Start?

    There is a rather large hunt near me - Genesee Valley - and I am interested in seeing if it is something I would like to join. I'm itching to do more with my horse but I will be honest - the tradition and formality is a bit intimidating. I don't know any of the members so I don't feel like I necessarily have an "in" so to speak. How does one go about joining without an invite? Is this even possible?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 25, 2003
    Location
    Boston Area
    Posts
    8,387

    Default

    First step would be to contact the Hunt secretary or Master(s) and ask if there's a way you can observe a hunt. We have a few people who go to observation points via car where they can see the hounds work.

    Next see if Genesee Valley offers a "Learn to Hunt" clinic or lecture. Many hunts do that as a way to help prospective members learn more about the protocols and what an actual hunt entails. The clinic might include a mounted session where you can see how your horse works in a group, over varied terrain or even with some hounds.

    Some hunts offer the opportunity to go "roading" with the hounds. That's an excellent way to introduce your horse to hunting.

    Certainly the hunt people I know are very friendly and inviting. We all are excited when people want to learn more about hunting.

    Just a warning: hunting is way too much fun. It will spoil you for anything else!
    Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
    EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec. 19, 2008
    Location
    Where The Snow Flies
    Posts
    2,423

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogie View Post
    First step would be to contact the Hunt secretary or Master(s) and ask if there's a way you can observe a hunt. We have a few people who go to observation points via car where they can see the hounds work.

    Next see if Genesee Valley offers a "Learn to Hunt" clinic or lecture. Many hunts do that as a way to help prospective members learn more about the protocols and what an actual hunt entails. The clinic might include a mounted session where you can see how your horse works in a group, over varied terrain or even with some hounds.

    Some hunts offer the opportunity to go "roading" with the hounds. That's an excellent way to introduce your horse to hunting.

    Certainly the hunt people I know are very friendly and inviting. We all are excited when people want to learn more about hunting.

    Just a warning: hunting is way too much fun. It will spoil you for anything else!
    That's what I hope! Apparently I have a horse that is made to be a field hunter (so I've been told by others). She's an Irish Draught cross and is absolutely bombproof outside the ring. I think she'd have a blast doing something like this. And when my horse is happy - I'm happy.

    So from what you're saying, the hunts are not as closed or elitist as the impression I've gotten from some?



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2006
    Posts
    3,424

    Default

    Be forewarned...hunting is ADDICTIVE!!! Way too much fun!!!
    www.crosscreeksporthorses.com
    Breeders of Painted Thoroughbreds and Uniquely Painted Irish Sport Horses in Northeast Oklahoma



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep. 21, 2001
    Location
    Parker, Colorado
    Posts
    2,649

    Default

    When I was in your shoes, I found the website for my local hunt, which gave the phone number for the membership chairperson. I called! They invited me along to go hilltopping (via car) to observe and socialize. I was hooked!! Even though I didn't know anyone begin with, as I got to know folks, it was surprising how many of us had crossed paths or trainers in the past. It is a small world! The rest, as they say, is history
    where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan. 27, 2004
    Location
    Yonder, USA
    Posts
    2,561

    Default

    Ditto the advice you've already received. Once you've attended one function, keep coming to as many 'public' events as you can, be pleasant, and be persistent and interested in meeting members.

    Yes, there are some snobs--but aren't there in practically every group? IME, the vast majority of members are not at all unfriendly and are genuinely glad to see prospective members. *However*, they may be busy folks with their own lives and existing circle of friends who have seen many dabblers come and go with few actually joining and becoming active in the hunt. In other words, you MAY encounter a "wait and see" approach from some members that shouldn't be mistaken for snobbery or exclusion.

    The solution for you is to keep showing up, especially if you have a little time to volunteer (hunts ALWAYS have more work than volunteers). It took literally a couple dozen hunts and events for the crustiest old bats to unbend enough to notice me, but most of the regulars were extremely friendly and supportive as soon as they figured out I was serious and willing to pitch in and help.

    As for the tradition and 'look', don't let it intimidate you. The vast majority has roots in common sense, safety, and comfort, and you get used to the costume fairly quickly (especially since everyone else is doing it, too!) I'm almost fond of my Emperor Penguin suit.
    ---------------------------


    2 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun. 1, 2001
    Location
    Rosco, GA
    Posts
    1,908

    Default

    Wildblue's second paragraph is so spot-on that I nominate it to the Foxhunting FAQ.


    1 members found this post helpful.

Similar Threads

  1. What should I start hunting as a beginner?
    By martingeorg in forum Hunting
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: Apr. 27, 2011, 09:17 AM
  2. The Hunting Effect- info session on deer hunting
    By baylady7 in forum Off Course
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: Jan. 7, 2011, 10:48 AM
  3. Replies: 12
    Last Post: Mar. 16, 2010, 06:47 PM
  4. The age to start hunting - pics!
    By 3Dogs in forum Hunting
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: Feb. 11, 2009, 11:11 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
randomness