Nelson County, Virginia
It was a cool and damp start for the 2009 Oak Ridge Fox Hunt Club’s (ORFHC) opening hunt held this past weekend at Oak Ridge Estate. The club has been in around since 1887 when it was originally founded in Lynchburg. It was moved to Oak Ridge in 1910 and Rita Mae Brown re-instituted the Fox Hunt at Oak Ridge in 1993.
Though the event is called a hunt, it’s not actually a fox hunt, but a simple tradition of running the hounds each fall in the rolling property of SE Nelson County, Virginia. ORFHC web site says, “We respect the traditions of this greatest of sports without being haughty.”
Though the morning started rainly, but afternoon the sun peeked out from time to time with the rain ending.
The ORFHC web site says formal season usually begins the first Sunday in November: Sundays are formal and Fridays are informal. We now go out two Wednesdays a month which are also be informal. The season ends on the Sunday closest to March 17th – St. Patrick’s Day. (Lots of Irish blood in our human pack!) Cubbing will begin again the first Friday after Labor Day.
ORFHC on the web at: www.oakridgefoxhuntclub.com
Come on NCL……..you can do better.
A fox hunt, like a rose by any other name, is still a fox hunt. You put hounds out to find the scent of a fox, and then the hounds do what comes as instinct for them, and chase the fox. Though “the kill” is not the desired ending of the story (since there would be no “next time” to chase the fox), it sometimes happens that hounds will catch and kill a fox: which we have PLENTY of around here…..and my chickens would like to see a few less. So let’s call a spade a spade.
Fox hunting is an ages-old tradition that has come under increased scrutiny and attack lately worldwide by those who do not understand it, or are simply misinformed……or those that read articles that were never edited by anyone interested in the entire story……. or syntax and grammatical accuracy (nudge nudge, NCL).
Note the traditional role played by the Church in the blessing of the hounds: something else that goes back many generations.
It should also be noted that the hounds are not the only ones acting out their primieval urges, since those riders gather after the hunt to share and stretch stories of the day, drink heartily, and sup with friends on a midday meal called “Breakfast”. Fox hunting in Virginia is a great tradition that I enjoyed many times in my younger days, and I hope it sticks around for many generations to come: and so do my chickens.
Wow! Homer think you had a hearty breakfast yourself today. Have a great week!