On April 28th, Denny Emerson wrote “One horse sport that has always preserved and protected open land more than all the others is fox hunting, so support that if you are lucky enough to be in an area where a hunt exists.”
In Vermont we are one such small hunt club and we would like to invite you join us for one or all of our 2022 non-hunting fundraising rides. These rides will take place on private property thanks to the generosity of local land owners who support our hunt club. The trails consist of rolling hay fields, wooded paths and tractors roads alongside crops. Some of the fixtures included cross-country jumps that are maintained by the land owners or the hunt club. Please read the description of each event and join us for as many as you can.
Guided Trail Ride BBQ & Boogie
May 28th, Saturday, 3pm, Timber Hill Farm in Richmond.
A late afternoon trail ride in the Winooski River valley followed by an informal social gathering with food, drink and prizes. Leaders knowledgeable with the properties will take out groups of 7-10. We will offer riders the option to join “First Field” which will walk/trot/canter/jump, “Second Field” which will walk/trot/maybe canter, or “Third Field” which will walk/maybe trot. People can move between groups if they feel they need to make a change. The pace of each group will be set to accommodate all the riders.
June 4th, Saturday, 8am – 1pm, Quiet Valley Farm in Shoreham.
This event is great for green horse/riders and experienced competitors alike. Ride at your own pace in groups of 2 to 6 riders. There will be trail options mapped out; short (5 miles) and long (10+ miles). The properties include rolling hay fields, wooded trails, private and public roads. There is a bridge crossing and several cross-country jumps. This is a wonderful way to enjoy riding through the beautiful VT countryside with your horse and friends.
Guided Trail Ride, Whistle Pig Tour & Tasting
June 23rd, Thursday, 2pm, Quiet Valley Farm in Shoreham.
An afternoon trail ride at a lovely property in Addison County, featuring a visit to the neighboring Whistlepig distillery and rye fields. Guides will lead groups of 7-10 in “First Field” (walk/trot/canter/jump), “Second Field” (walk/trot/maybe canter) or “Third Field” (walk/maybe trot). Given how horses can get excited at being part of a herd, the first 20 minutes of each group will be spent walking to settle the horses and give people the opportunity to move between groups if they feel they need to make a change.
Guided Trail Ride Farm to Table Brunch
July 17th, Sunday, 9am, Lilac Ridge Farm in Charlotte.
A morning outing in Chittenden County at one of our favorite hunt locations, replete with well-designed jumps, wooded trails, and open fields, and featuring a farm-to-table brunch, including from Philo Ridge Farm, a deliciously exciting example of sustainable agriculture over which you will be riding. The trail system is invitingly labyrinthine, so well-versed guides will take out groups of 7-10 in “First Field” (walk/trot/canter/jump), “Second Field” (walk/trot/maybe canter) or “Third Field” (walk/maybe trot). People will have the opportunity to move between groups if they feel they need to make a change.
October, 8th, Saturday, 8am – 1pm, Quiet Valley Farm in Shoreham.
A hunter pace is a low-key competitive event derived from foxhunting. Teams of four to six riders follow an outdoor course laid out over terrain which is meant to simulate the riding conditions encountered during a foxhunt – that is, a mixture of gaits that a foxhunter typically uses.
It is up to each team to guess what the pace we decided is the ideal time to complete the course and to adjust its progress accordingly. The ideal time is determined by sending out one or more test teams to ride the course before the event. On the day of the event, the team which completes the course in a time closest to the ideal is placed first. Most hunter paces are divided into three divisions, with different ideal times. Although jumps are found along the course, taking them is always optional for all divisions. Even though there is a competitive aspect to a hunter pace, most riders simply regard it as an enjoyable way to spend a day in the countryside with their mounts and congenial company. The placings are almost secondary.
New England Hunts Hunter Trials
October, 23rd, Sunday Huntington Farm, South Strafford, Vermont
This prestigious competition has been held by the New England hunts since 1932, with the various hunts taking turns hosting the event. In 2022 Green Mountain Hounds will be sharing the responsibility with North Country Hounds, and we’re pleased to be using one the regions’ premier eventing venues. While the Qualified Divisions (jumps ranging from 2’9” to 4’) are limited to active foxhunters riding their foxhunting horses, there is the same suite of Open Divisions available to everyone. Obstacles (20-25 of them) are of natural design such as might be found at a hunt. Hunt-specific challenges such a quick stop (Hold Hard), a quick exit (Gone Away), and opening and closing a fence will be included. Each obstacle is judged from the perspective of easy and smooth execution. Take advantage to ride this lovely venue with the friendliest people from all over New England.