What can I do to prepare for foxhunting?
Participating in off season trail riding, exposing your horse and you to as many different scenarios as possible is invaluable. Both horse and rider need to be in good shape to handle our country. Reading Wadsworth's "Riding to Hounds in America: an Introduction to foxhunters" is a great resource.
How do I join in for the first time?
After speaking to the secretary and making sure you and your horse are ready, we encourage you to come out in an appropriate field for your and your horse's skill set. It's great to have a seasoned buddy and their horse accompany you if possible.
Be prepared for rolling fields, steep wooded trails, lots of creek crossings and cows.
We have 3 fields to choose from, available to all.
1st field - moves on behind the hounds and huntsman. Be prepared to gallop and jump. Our jumps are coops, stone walls and rail jumps.
2nd field - moves on but goes through gates and allows for some jumping.
3rd field - walk, trots and canters, depending on who is out that day. Our activity will be geared toward the youngest child's (or eldest adult!), or the greenest horse's comfort level.
ALL the fields see great sport and have enjoyable, fun and safe outings.
Do I have to be a member to participate?
No! We welcome guests always. Please do call the Honorary Secretary at 703-727-6095 to ask about when would be an appropriate day to come. Guests may cap a total of 6 times, and may apply their cap fees to their membership.
What is "ratcatcher attire"? And what does it mean "Farmer's pack"?
So - without going into a 300 year historical review of foxhunting...A Farmer's pack is literally that. Generally a private, smaller, informal hunt on a farmer's land. Being that we are one, ratcatcher attire is always appropriate, on any day. A "ratcatcher" was the person who often worked for the hunt (in days of yore) who carried the terrier who'd go down the hole after the fox. He dressed in tweeds and browns. Hence the name. In modern day riding clothes, what does this mean? The answer is "it depends on your hunt" - Sometimes ratcatcher is only appropriate in the early weeks of hunting, called cubbing season.
At Snickersville, it is appropriate always...Your tweed jackets, colored stock ties, beige, grey or rust breeches, and field boots are most welcome. On a very hot day, a polo or riding shirt (any color OTHER than Red) would be fine. If your jacket is a navy or green "tech fabric" from showing, that is great! It also means that a modern ASTM approved helmet is absolutely fine, as is your safety vest. And if, come "formal season" you love your black melton, starched white stock tie, flat tack and dress boots - that's great too. And, if you've earned your "colors" at another hunt, please feel welcome to wear them. Children should always be dressed in neat and tidy riding clothes. Half chaps are encouraged for warmth as well as protection from briars. In inclement weather, however they can be kept warm and dry is fine. We are lucky to have a couple great riding consignment shops in the area. And when we say rain gear or cold weather gear is acceptable, we mean it. We ask that you and your horse show up fit, neat and tidy, in clean tack, ready to hunt and have fun.
How often does Snickersville Hounds meet?
We meet twice a week, Wednesdays and Sundays, during the season.