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Butkin and others who

(24 Posts)
MookySpinge Fri 16-Oct-09 16:23:43

. . . hunt, please talk me through everything I need to know/do/buy to get self and horse ready for our first time. So far on my list I have 'Serious Bit' and road studs, expect there are a few more things to think of?

mummydoc Fri 16-Oct-09 17:28:32

calmer ( for you and horse) large bottel of gin and alot of hot water and good bubble bath ( i reccomend badedas) for afterwards. this is my experience after taking nutty noddy and dd2 aged 4 hunting 2 weeks ago. actually noddy bless him was surprisingly good and dd2 loved it, iwas soooooo knackered afterwards , us leading rein mummies ran bloody miles, leaping ditches etc on the way

MookySpinge Fri 16-Oct-09 17:37:06

Oooh thanks for those suggestions, will brandy do instead of gin? Haven't felt this excited since I invented fancy sideways lateral show jumping earlier this year!

Seriously wondering whether I should be on a lead rein too though? grin

MookySpinge Fri 16-Oct-09 17:41:32

Do people still put green ribbons in their tails?

MookySpinge Fri 16-Oct-09 17:42:13

In their HORSES' tails I mean blush

mummydoc Fri 16-Oct-09 17:45:16

it would take a lot of money to make me take someone on a lead rein again, not because we didn't have fun, and noddy was super just i couldn't walk the next day !!! i have given up my personal trainer at the gym to fund childrens new and expensive pony habit - but boy i don't need it anymore ( gym not pony)

Butkin Sat 17-Oct-09 11:57:55

The things I bought when I first started hunting (a long time ago now!) were a hunt shirt, stock, tie pin, waistcoat and proper hunting coat (which are fantastic in all weathers).

I hunt in my Charles Owen show hat as it is up to spec and smart. However you could easily ride in a skull cap as long as it had a black or blue velvet cover.

I wear normal beige jods (my thickest ones) and long black boots with spurs (optional) and warm black gloves with good grips (I used to wear proper cream string backed gloves but they are hopeless unless new and well looked after).

I carry a normal whip. I own a hunting whip with thong but it is such a hassle I usually only carry it on special occasions.

I clip my horse and he wears his reins on the 2nd ring of a 3 ring gag with a flash noseband. I also use a martingale - more so that it gives me a neck strap! He wears normal shoes - don't bother with road studs as mostly on grass or set-aside.

Have fun - my cob was lame today on firm ground so not sure when I'll be ready to go!

Butkin Sat 17-Oct-09 12:00:15

P.S. DD has been out on the lead rein since she was little. I still run alongside her even now (aged 6). I'd suggest that DO's should not go hunting, led-off, until they are able to ride competently alone because even your most placid hack will get revved up out hunting.

MookySpinge Sat 17-Oct-09 13:43:02

Thanks Butkin

Are your lot friendly? Is it worth the slight schlep up the A14? I hope I can get away with brown boots, everything else I have or can borrow easily. I just need to keep bullying reminding my friend that she has promised to take me with her, and to look after us.

Butkin Sat 17-Oct-09 19:51:26

Mooky, in my horses prime I used to hunt with the Thurlow and have had a lovely time. Mostly racing folk who I already knew etc and fantastic hunting country. DD has joined their pony club.

However now my cob has slowed up, and I find it easier to go at weekends with DD, I now hunt mostly with the Suffolk.

They are a pretty friendly bunch and the field master, Gary Tate, is a very easy going bloke.

Both hunts have pretty formidable secretaries but they are nice once you get to know them.

Last year I also went out for one day charity buy) with the West Norfolk and they were incredibly friendly.

IF you decide go with the Suffolk let me know and I'll introduce myself and make sure you are OK.

MitchyInge Sun 18-Oct-09 09:46:27

Thank you Butkin hope I can take you up on that soon! If all goes according to plan I'll go out with the Easton Harriers first, see how we get on.

My biggest concern is that I'm just too novice for it, but there's only one way to find out. At least we can canter on our hacks now, am hoping fitness won't be an issue.

Butkin Mon 19-Oct-09 13:37:04

Mitchy, I'm sure you'll be fine. I bought my first horse in order to go riding and everybody said a complete beginner would struggle but I never had a moment's worry. There are always plenty of people who don't jump if you are feeling nervous.

My horses went out with the Easton when on hunt livery in that area but I've never been. Sound ideal for first time though.

A few tips for first timers:

1. Call the secretary in advance to make sure it is Ok to come and check how much it will be. They will also give you advice about where to park as most hunts don't allow you to park at all the meets.

2. Get there in good time and find the secretary and pay up without being asked. Then introduce yourself to the field master (find out from the secretary if you're not sure who they are).

3. Try to always follow the Field Master and try to keep up (so you don't get lost and in the way) without pressing on too hard.

4. When you want to go home wait for a lull in preceedings and then tell the Field Master. They will point you in the right direction. Say a cheery goodnight to everybody who is staying out longer than you. You wil probably find that 2 hours will be plenty the first time you go for both you and your horse.

snorris Mon 19-Oct-09 13:58:03

Every year I say I want to take my pony and have not yet had the chance. Last time I went hunting was when I was about 20 and worked for a family in the Brecon Beacons. (Very long time ago winkgrin).

MitchyInge Mon 19-Oct-09 18:43:04

ah my first pony trekking holiday was in the brecon beacons, it was the best!

thanks butkin, am actually going to print that off - then I will get back to pestering my friend for a date

I think the anticipation, like our first show, is almost as much fun as the event itself!

slightly concerned about how much plough there is, and whether to boot or not? we don't usually use boots except for x country, but that's not for such a long period of time hmm

MitchyInge Mon 19-Oct-09 18:44:04

I wonder if I will be scared when it comes to it?

Butkin Mon 19-Oct-09 19:25:21

Mitchy, You will be excited and probably nervous but not scared - it really isn't anything to be worried about. If you were going up to Leicestershire or Ireland then I'd be scared but not Suffolk/Norfolk which is mostly just keeping to the headlands and the occasional ditch.

When I first started I used to put on brushing boots and overreach boots.

However the reality is that some rubber overreach boots will probably either come off or rub and wouldn't really protect your horse if he struck into his heels - they are thin rubber after all.

Brushing boots may be an idea though - certainly should give your horse some protection and support although I don't bother anymore.

Remember to check the weather forecast and wear a jumper under your hunt coat - particularly if your coat is not very thick.

Be prepared for a lot of hanging about - although with a harrier pack they will get much more of a wriggle on that a foxhound pack.

MitchyInge Mon 19-Oct-09 19:48:21

very excited about the ditches! thanks for tip about the weather forecast too, had not even crossed my mind that it could be considerably colder in a couple of weeks

will probably not bother with either boots, he's never had an overreach injury to my knowledge and I haven't forgotten how lame poor Fox was from dirt that got into his brushing boots

gratuitous footage of Fox at Olympia smile

Butkin Tue 20-Oct-09 10:24:21

We love Olympia and are taking DD again for the M&M Monday. We've booked our usual seats next to the horse entrance - do DD can peer at them warming up!

For some reason I can't get the Fox footage to start up (the other ones are OK) I'll check again later.

Are you going this year?

Pixel Tue 20-Oct-09 18:03:17

I really really wanted to get to Olympia this year as we missed it last year, but events have conspired against me <adopts tragic pose>. I promised dd I'd take her and I'd feel too mean going mid-week without her, only her school doesn't break up until the friday and then she is doing her first ever gig on the saturday (she goes to rock school) so that doesn't leave much time (or energy!) to hot-foot it up to London.
At least I made it to the showjumping and dressage at Windsor, plus Hickstead a couple of times, so I've done quite well this year. It's just that Olympia is special isn't it?

MitchyInge Tue 20-Oct-09 18:37:23

I hope I can, always seem to be working though - some have qualified from the yard so could try to tag along

Butkin Wed 21-Oct-09 11:48:04

Pixel, If she likes M&Ms then Monday 21st is the day to go because they are on all morning and doesn't cost any more than buying an afternoon ticket. Also being so close to Christmas the entrance of Father Christmas in his pageant at the close of the afternoon is magical!

Pixel Wed 21-Oct-09 15:53:16

Oh don't! It's bad enough that singing The First Noel always makes me blub blush.

I love the M&M (I will get that exmoor pony for ds one day) but I don't think dd will be that interested. I have to confess here and now, in the tack room that what she really likes is the dog agility! shockshock. (Although the Shetland Grand National is a close second cos she loves dshetland even if she doesn't want to ride her). She just likes Olympia because of the fantastic atmosphere and being so close to Christmas as you said.

I know, a non-horsey daughter, I'm not sure how it happened either. I blame dh.

Butkin Thu 22-Oct-09 11:25:15

Olympia will have dogs and Shetlands - that is why it is much better for DDs than HOYS!

The whole thing is designed for short attention spans...

Southwestwhippet Sat 24-Oct-09 21:36:50

Have fun.

take something deliciously alcoholic in a hip flask

Wear a warm coat, warm boots and warm gloves.

Put a martingale or neckstrap on your horse so you have something to hang onto if you get nervous.

If your horse is wildly over excited don't make the mistake I did with my old horse of keeping her at the back as it just makes them worse. Go up with the horses nearer the front (but don't overtake the master).

If you can't stop when everyone else does, circle away from everyone else whilst you pull up.

If you hear someone in front of you shout something like 'gate' you need to turn round and shout it behind you so that the last person through will shut the gate.

I am very jealous. No hunting for me until next year when I am not pregnant any more. When I first hunted my pony I put tendon boots on in front and made sure I had a martingale. Otherwise I didn't do anything extra tack-wise, no 'strong bit' or 'studs' he wasn't even shod behind at the time! We had a FAB day.

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