You may not have noticed this activity in the Lake District. Despite its popularity, it is a low key event that is not widely advertised. However, this sport in which hounds race along a pre-planned route is great for spectators and dog lovers alike.
Hound Trailing has its origins in the 18th Century but it wasn’t until 1906 that the Hound Trailing Association was formed to govern the sport. Hound Trailing is essentially a race between hounds over moorland, fells and fields. The hounds follow a pre-laid trail of aniseed.
Often the hounds will have to cross a barbed wire fence where a wooden rail has been placed to prevent any injury. The first hound to cross the finish line is declared the winner. During the race the owners will be shouting and blowing whistles to encourage their hound.
Hound Trailing is a seasonal sport, extending from April 1st to October 31st. Throughout the season there are five main events:
- May Day
- Dog Produce
- Bitch Produce
- August Premier
- October Meet
In addition Hound Trails take place about 12 times a week throughout Cumbria. As well as being a great spectator sport, Hound Trailing is an event where you can have a bet on your choice of winner. You may also see Hound Trailing at one of the many agricultural shows held throughout the summer in the Lake District. If you want to keep up with the latest Hound Trailing news, the Keswick Reminder reports of the latest results.