Once again, Sandy Creek Beagle Club
was the gracious host to the AKC
Large Pack Nationals, and I was again
able to attend with the help Dan Kane
some other good friends. This was the
last of my 4 weekend back-to-back
trials, and it wrapped up my 23-day
stay in Canada and New York. I had
attended the Canadian Beagle National
LPH Trial the weekend before, Ottawa
Valley B.C. the week before that, and
the 2-day CBFTA trial the weekend
before Ottowa Valley. By the time I
returned home to Indianapolis, I had
put some 4,495 miles behind me, but I
enjoyed every mile. It’s always
good to see my northern beagling
friends, and I always manage to meet
some new ones. Bill VanDeBogart from
AKC, and Mike Luchetta from Purina
were in attendance. I see these guys
more than I do my own family it seems.
It’s always good to shake their
hands again. They truly support the
great sport of Beagling.

We didn’t get quite the same
pleasant weather for the Nationals that
we got last year. This year we got that
wonderful lake-effect snow that always
dumps on the elevated Tug Hill region
of Upstate New York. When Dan and
I left Lansdowne, Ontario, it was in the
forties and clear, as it was when we
passed through Watertown, NY (about
27 miles north of Sandy Creek). When
we got within five miles of Sandy
Creek, the temperatures had dropped
substantially, and we drove into a wall
of falling snow. Arriving at the
clubhouse, we found 6 – 8 inches of
the white stuff that had been there since
the Thursday before. This would be the
first snow of the season for most of the
dogs competing. I was fully expecting
nose adjustments to affect the running
to some extent.

It’s always good to meet up with
the regulars, but I was particularly
delighted to see some of the Canadians
come down to compete. I’d just
seen them the week before in New
Brunswick, and here they are in New
York. I didn’t know they were
coming. Jim and Dale Bungay from
Nova Scotia, who won the Canadian
Nationals with their 13-inch bitch
FTCH Eastcreek’s Kristy’s
Angel the week before, traveled 19
hours to get there. They overnighted in
Woodstock, NY before coming in to
Sandy Creek. (I told them they should
have been in Woodstock in 1969!) The
Steeves from New Brunswick
attended, Andrew “the Giggler�
Shearer from Ontario, and Clair
Murphy from Prince Edward Island
sent a hound with the Steeves. I made a
bet with Andrew before the trial started
that he would place his hound FTCH
Awful Bawlin Mobile Checker (half-
brother to Art Beamer’s Viagra
hound). Checker’s been on a
streak, as has Viagra (aka Viggie). I
also saw Massachusetts beagler, Joe
Gamache, whom I’d met for the
first time the week before in Canada.
This sport really transcends all
geographical borders – state,
province, or country!
The barn at Sandy Creek, cloaked in
Canadian Beagler Dale Bungay (right) travels a long
way with her hubby Jim to compete in this trial.
Beaglers head up the road to watch the big males
November 4 & 5, 2006 - Sandy Creek Beagle Club, Sandy Creek, NY