Three Creek Bassets

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Photos by Patricia Branan-Wendell, Equestrian Influence

The Mells Foxhounds of Lynnville, Tenn. are enjoying weekly (on Sundays) Basset hunting with Three Creek Bassets or the Okaw Valley Foot Bassets at the Sugar Valley Farm in Lynnville, Tenn. Mells hunted with Three Creek Bassets from the Sugar Valley Farm in October and November, 2020. Mells will be hunting with the Bassets in December, as well.

Three Creek Bassets are a private pack hunt located in the St. Louis, Missouri area, founded by Mrs. D.J. Moore in 1966. The pack was handed down to Mrs. Moore’s daughter, Laura Carpenter Balding of St. Louis, who is Joint MBH, and the pack is now entrusted to Lei Ruckle, who is based in Alabama.  The pack is the only pure America Basset pack in America.

Lei Ruckle, MBH and her Three Creek Bassets participated in the Fall Basset Trials at Aldie, Virginia, October 22-24, 2020, placing second in the Five Couple – Thornwood Bowl division. Three Creek also won the Dawson Trophy for Best Presentation over the three days. The pack won the Dawson Award in 2019, too. A special member of the pack, Melba, at age 14 months, was the 2018 AKC/BHCA “Absolute National Champion” at the field trails held in Chicago that year.
On Sunday November 8, Three Creek Bassets held their Blessing of the Hounds at Strathalbyn Farm Club, near Weldon Spring, MO. Laurie Hartung entertained folks with her bagpipe at the Blessing. The meet also celebrated St. Hubert’s Day, November 3, Hubert’s birthday, also known as the feast day of St. Hubert. St. Hubert (656 – 727 AD) is the Patron Saint of Hunters, and is honored among sport-hunters as the originator of ethical hunting behavior.

Three Creek Bassets celebrated Thanksgiving morning, November 26, 2020 with a meet at Three Creek Farm kennels.  Usually, they host a big tailgate dinner after the hunt, but this year were unable to host the annual meal because of COVID-19. But Laurie Hartung was back with her bagpipes to play for the crowd. To ensure continuation of the sport, those who attended were expected to wear masks, keep their distance from one another, and utilize hand washing/sanitizing to prevent the spread of the virus.

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