A great day sabbing at the Cotswold Vale Farmers’ Hunt today, who were attempting to hunt around Sandhurst, just north of Gloucester. We teamed up with pals from Three Counties Hunt Sabs, Southampton & South Wales with our forces split over four vehicles.
Upon leaving the meet the hunt were soon on to a fox, with sabs already present jumping into action and splitting the pack with horn calls. We quickly arrived and our foot sabs were straight into the field in pursuit, forcing them to move off and setting the tone for the rest of the day.
Great deployment of our vehicles meant that they then stuck to hunting a small area next to the River Severn, with various groups of sabs having eyes on them and us popping out in front of them when they least expected it. Hounds went into cry shortly after as we were following them up a track but our presence meant that the huntsman had no choice but to call them off and take the pack away from the area the fox was seen fleeing.
After more riding, stopping in farm yards (no doubt to try and formulate a plan) and about turns, the hunt headed back to the meet at around 2.30. Around half of the visibly pissed off field decided to call it a day and the huntsman, hounds and very few of the die-hards left the meet to try and get at least a bit of hunting done. But alas, we were there to make sure that it wasn’t to be!
With most foot sabs now in one group we stuck to the hunt like glue. Hounds were sneakily put onto the line of another fox by the huntsman, car sabs rushed ahead to cut them off and others put horn and voice calls to good use and called the majority of the pack back to us. Another fox away to safety with the huntsman left trying to get his hounds back together and considering his next move.
They then headed to Sandhurst Hill with us in tow. Hounds were again in cry, this time with the huntsman encouraging them on. It didn’t last long however and sabs soon used horn calls once again to bring the pack to us. This seemed to do the trick, after gathering the hounds the CV were soon heading back to the meet with us following, this time for good.
Great communication, navigation and tag teaming ensured that we were always one step ahead of the hunt, second guessing their every move and leaving them with very few options of where to go. We had constant visual on them, with foot sabs always very close by and intervening when necessary. Two foxes helped away, hounds getting to know us and our calls a bit better, new sabs introducing a few pairs of fresh legs and a rather crap day hunting for the Cotswold Vale Farmers’ Hunt. And some glorious sunshine! A solid days sabbing.