Reedy Creek Hounds
15911 Continental Rd.,
McKenney, Virginia 23872.
A beautiful, clear, sunny morning dawned in southern Virginia for the sixth annual opening meet of the Reedy Creek Hounds, Oct. 31. Once again, all the subscribers, landowners and friends of the hunt gathered in Stephensons’ meadow, near the kennels.
This year, however, there were even more riders than usual in the field, since it was also the last hunt of Virginia Hunt Week. Everyone looked beautiful, dressed in their formal attire and with their horses braided.
The traditional stirrup cup started at 9 a.m., and was followed by Ginger Rogers, one of the landowners, reading two lovely poems she had written. Then all eyes turned to the bottom of the field, as Tom McElduff and the staff brought the handsome pack of Penn-Marydel hounds up the field for the blessing, given by Father Murphy of Colonial Heights.
After the blessing, the pack moved off and was cast into the adjoining woods, where they picked up a gray fox for a brisk run. They stayed with the fox for about 25 minutes, running him through several coverts until they lost him on G.S. Clyborn’s farm. By this point, the sun was just about overhead, with the temperature rising.
Hounds worked hard to find again, but with no luck. The huntsman drew in his pack and moved to another covert, where we are usually able to pick up a big red who loves to run. He cast the pack into the covert, but it was hit and miss. The hounds ran for a bit but couldn’t seem to hold the line. They worked hard, feathering all about the fields and coverts, but came up blank.
Then, several deer left the covert and went across the road. After consultation, the MFH and huntsman decided that it was too hot. All hounds were on, so huntsman and staff roaded them back to the kennel.
It was a fun three hours, but everyone was ready to go back to the hunt breakfast, at the home of MFH Jim Culleton.