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Etiquette

The Meet:

  • Arrive at the meet properly attired and mounted in sufficient time to hear the day’s announcements.  Be ready to go when the hounds move off at the designated time.

 

  • If you hack to the meet, stay on roads, and never hack cross country, even if you think you know where we are hunting.  It can throw the hounds off the drag scent and ruin the day’s sport.

 

  • Never ride on lawns, stay on roadways and drives as much as possible.

 

  • Remember that not all of the land that we hunt is open for trail riding. Never trespass on private property when not hunting.

 

  • Upon arrival, it is appropriate to greet the Master(s) and staff, and check in with the field secretary.

 

  • Introduce your guests and check them in with the field secretary. Guests must have prior approval from one of the Masters to hunt. Guests must complete both a WDH and WACF release waiver to hunt.  Both release waivers can be found here:  WDH waiver, WACF waiver.

 

  • It is helpful to have any fees and paperwork taken care of as soon as possible.

 

  • If you have a guest, you are expected to remain with them for the day’s sport.

 

  • Members with their colors have the privilege of riding up front.

 

  • Do not offer unsolicited riding or etiquette advice in the hunt field. If you see a situation that you think is dangerous or improper, report it to one of the Field Leaders, or the Field Master.

 

  • Do not engage in loud conversation; speak softly so as to not distract hounds.

 

  • Do not speak to or interfere with hounds.

 

  • Always turn your horse to face hounds, move aside to let stray hounds pass you.

 

  • Try not to get between hounds and huntsman. The hounds, staff and huntsman should be given the right of way at all times.

 

  • In regards to a stray hound, hole, wire or other hazard, a pointed finger and a quiet notification to the rider behind you of  "ware hound on right,"...or "ware hole on left"..is sufficient, this should be quietly passed along. Never shout or scream for the entire field to hear. It is very disruptive to working hounds.

 

  • Never ride over crops or planted fields. It is always best to follow your field master in single file formation, as they usually know the footing.

 

  • When riding in open fields, be cautious about passing slower moving horses and of course, never pass your Field Leader or the Field Master.

 

  • Stay a good distance behind the horse in front of you, crowding and bumping can encourage the best of horses to kick.

 

  • If you must leave early, it is imperative that you ask your Field Leader or the Field Master for permission to leave and for the best route back to the meet so as to not interfere with the remainder of the days sport or place hounds in jeopardy.

 

  • Do not open your flask in the forest preserve or on the prairie path.

 

  • Always be courteous and friendly to the public. Public relations are everyone's responsibility.

 

  • Try not to hold up traffic and stay with the group when crossing roads.

 

  • It is always thoughtful to thank Masters, staff and your field leader at the end of the day’s sport.

 

  • As always, if in doubt....just ask! Your Field Master and Field Leaders want to make sure you have a great day in the field!

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