Drag hunting is hunting the clean boot. This is where a pre-planned human scent trail is left by the quarry which the pack of hounds then follow.
What to wear: It is important for all riders to be smart. Acceptable clothing is a black or dark coloured jacket and hat. Beige or white jodhpurs, long riding boots and a stock. Your horse must be well turned out with clean tack. You do not need to plait unless the meet is a ‘lawn’ meet as stated on the meet card. Some horses will have a ribbon in their tails. A green ribbon in a horse’s tail means it’s the rider and/or horses’ first time out. A red ribbon in a horse’s tail means is a warning that the horse kicks. Be respectful if you see a horse with a ribbon in its tail and provide the horse and rider with the space and support they need.
Test your brakes – hunting is fun, but it can be fast. Make sure your horse is fit enough for the day and that you have breaks and can top if necessary.
Field Master – The field will be told who their field master is for the day. You must stay behind the field master as all times.
Hunt Master and Whips – Ensure that you give the Hunt Master and Whips space as they control the hounds.
The hounds always have the right of way – always turn and face the hounds so that the hounds to not get kicked by the horses.
Always leave enough room for the person in front of you to clear the fence. If you stop at the fence you can represent when there is space, alternative look for another way though or follow the non-jumping master.
Look out for next weeks article on “Hunting lingo”. A Glossary of terms you may hear whilst out with the hunt.