It's cutting them loose and having the pack run the rabbit until it gives up and goes in a hole or gets caught. And although the dogs usually don't catch it, they run like they want to. Just me and my pack of hounds, in any condition, on any day, in the roughest places I can find . . .

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Running Hare

Looking Across the Swamp Waiting on the White Rabbit
When you haven't done it in a while, you start to forget how easy it is. And how exciting. And how addicting. And how good it is for the dogs. And how much conditioning it takes for the dogs to do well. And just the sound of the music as dogs fade in and out of hearing. Most of all though, you forget just how glorious it is to have a pack of hounds pounding for hour after hour working together in screaming pursuit of the big white rabbits.

I saw Jeff Kerns a while back and the first thing he said was, "when we going to Michigan?" Two weeks later Jeff, Jeff Allen, the Old Man and I were headed north. Four guys, 25 dogs and a truck and trailer loaded full headed to the swamps for a little running.

Although we just took a short trip, it was an amazing one. The dogs ran great with lots of different dogs contributing. In fact, that was the best part of the whole trip. On every chase if you listened close, you could hear a lot of different dogs getting work done. All of us had some young dogs, but they handled the trip well and acted like they had done it all before. 

I took Ding, a pup out of Dennis and Dilly that had only been run in the wild three times and he ran for 4 1/2 hours with the pack one morning and found his way out of the swamp when we caught the dogs. There were several other pups and they all ran well with the pack and hung in the chases like veterans.

This was a great trip and I can't wait to go back. When you haven't run hare for a while, you forget just how amazing it is. Getting to see the rabbits in their white coats made it even better. And getting back to Jeff's question, "when we going to Michigan?" Soon, real soon.

I ran Dennis, DK, Meg, Cole, Poppy, Martha, and Ding. The Old Man ran Tony, Chip, JJ, Dixie, Suzie, and Dilly.

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