Hunting hits the ski slopes

  • Three scarlet-clad skiers caught the eye of a Horse & Hound reader on the slopes of La Plagne, France recently. The intrepid trio were Daemon Edwards, joint-master of the Vine and Craven; Duncan Cinnamon, who will hunt the pack’s hounds next season; and Jack Bucknell, a former joint-master of the Garth and South Berks.

    “When Jack asked us to bring our scarlets, I was a bit dubious — especially as I don’t ski very well,” said Edwards (pictured on left with Duncan Cinnamon), still fragile after sustaining broken ribs in a fracas with saboteurs. “But we put on our hunting clothes, had a meet at a pub, and got a superb reception all day.”

    Jack Bucknell added: “We were holloaing and blowing our horns, and we heard the most wonderful holloa from up the slope — from an Englishman who must have been 90. French families were saying ‘bravo’ — they hunt boar in the area.”

    Meanwhile, a few peaks away at Les Deux Alpes, a party from the Pytchley staged a full-scale foxhunt. Will Spencer, whose father is a joint-master, hunted three couple of hounds, who chased the fox — aka Fred Harper, the trip’s organiser.

    Will explained: “The meet was at a mountain restaurant — it was delayed due to frost and snow — where we had port before the off.

    “The fox was given a 5min headstart and was allowed to use three lifts next to the restaurant, allowing the foot-followers and field of 15 good viewing. Due to bad scent, we could only hunt by sight.

    “People — including the lift attendants — soon realised what was going on and began to point us in the direction of the fox. It took us about an hour and a half to catch him after a couple of short, sharp runs.”

  • This news article was first published in Horse & Hound (14 April, ’05)

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