Take Me (Virtually) Hunting

I’ve wanted to hunt, at least once, as long as I can remember. At 70 I don’t imagine I ever will, though.
So I thought I would come here and ask a favor.
Please pretend I’m just about 30, which I was 40 years ago when I was taking lessons at a good hunter-jumper barn.
Please take me on a virtual hunt, on a good steady eddie hunter. Just walk me through it (or trot/gallop me through it).
I honestly wouldn’t mind going on a good steady virtual hack/road horse if that would realistically be better. I just want to “see” hounds and maybe jump something while I’m out.

You might enjoy this video from northwest Illinois from 2016

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Cool. Thank you very much.

Battle Creek Hunt https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=b2zwGocX7f0

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You can still go hunting at 70! Do it!!

I took my father out when he was 73. He used to hunt when he was a boy. He flatly refused to do any kind of preparation for his day out - get a bit fitter, improve his wind, do some riding. He then absolutely loved every single moment out on Exmoor, following foxhounds. We kept on the move as scent was good. Walking, trotting, cantering through beautiful scenery. No jumps on Exmoor but rocks, bogs and steep hills, sometimes at speed. We chatted happily with other people out and someone asked Pa if he still followed his boyhood pack. I began to get just a liiitttle bit concerned as he showed no sign of stopping and his enjoyment and enthusiasm were undiminished. After all, a 73 year old dad… so I announced that I was tired and that I wished to stop. We then had a lovely two hour gentle hack back home to the stables with Pa happily reminiscing about the day and past times riding. For the next three nights, my Mother told me, she had to roll him over in bed because he was too stiff to move! And for years after he took delight in telling everyone that we went home when I was tired.

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Thank you! That’s a lovely story! I know you both had a wonderful time.

How beautiful! Thank you.
And how cool to have the music from Black Beauty as the theme!

This looks like it was a fun day out.

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OP where are u located?

Georgia

Thanks. That did look like fun. And it made me realize I have done that sort of hunting. No fox, no hounds, but we used to trail ride a bit like that at my first barn, and later I went on trail rides by myself that included an outside hunter course and a trail with jumps along a river. And there I did have, not a hound, but a dog along.
I guess it’s the group outings I miss 'cause I haven’t done a lot of that in ages.
There was some lovely country in that video too, as well as that skewbald with the pretty white tail. How does he keep it so clean!

There are two types of foxhunters: those that ride to hunt and those that hunt to ride. Most videos will be in the field and very, very occasionally one might spot a hound. I now follow Basset hounds on foot precisely because I don’t have to worry about being kicked by someone else’s horse or falling off over a jump and I have far more chance to see the hound work.

Follow in a vehicle - that is another option if you want to see hounds. Not so much fun if you want to ride.

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Thank you for this. :slight_smile:
I love Basset hounds. Some friends of mine used to have one named Waddle!

My hunt has easily a dozen riders in their late 70s or even early 80s. Several of these even still ride in 1st.
If this is truly a lifelong bucketlist item, then make it happen.

Most hunts have members with horses available for full-service rental (e.g. show up at the meeting point with a clean and tacked up horse suitable for the rider’s stated goals). Depending on where you live, you might have several options. Inform the horse owner that you want to hilltop or ride in 3rd, and have never hunted before. They will provide a suitable horse, probably another adult to act as babysitter, and help you navigate signing a release and paying a capping fee. You should make sure you have a basic understanding of the ‘rules’ and know what to wear.

For one such member in my hunt, she charges $250/day for the horse, and capping will run you another $100 or so.

I’m a long time show hunter person who started fox hunting last year and I love it. It is definitely different, but a very welcoming community. Make sure you’re riding fit before you go out. Even hilltopping, 3-4 hours in the saddle is a lot if you’re not used to it.

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Thank you!

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