Ladies saddle up for the hunting and more at mammoth event
More than 150 ladies are expected to travel to counties Meath and Galway to take part in a side saddle hunting extravaganza next month.
Riders from the United States, Britain and continental Europe have already booked their flights to take part in the mammoth side saddle event that will see ladies ride with the Tara Harriers in Co Meath and the Grallagh Harriers in Co Galway.
Side saddle rider Susan Oakes is the driving force behind the weekend, which will also include a hunt ball, formal reception and a traditional Irish ceili session.
The side saddle hunting weekend will begin on Friday November 29 with champagne reception in the Headfort Arms Hotel in Kells. The reception will be followed by a fun hunting-themed ceili night with lots of hunting songs, music and anecdotes and poems.
On Saturday, November 30, the ladies will attend a lawn meet of the Tara Harriers, hosted by Orini Jackson and Nevill Jessop at Brittas House.
Riders will be given their allotted horse at the meet and all the hirelings will be steady, comfortable and sensible types with brakes and steering. Smaller ladies and children will ride some top class Connemara hunting ponies and smaller cobs.
All hirelings will have been schooled side saddle before the day of the hunt and will have hunted the country before.
"The day's country will consist of parkland and farmland. Going should be good and jumping will consist of ditches, banks, fly fences and uprights as we will be hunting in an area where there is an extensive cross country course," explained Susan.