Oct. 28 & 29, 2006 - Fundy Trial BC, St. John, NB, Canada
Before I begin the write-up on this event, I want to share with you a word. Dedication. If I came
away from this event with nothing else, if I could only use one word to describe the CDN National
Beagle LPH trial, it would be “dedicationâ€�.  Here we have a major event in its fifth year, created
and organized on the grass roots level - originally by a small group of beaglers and
independent of the
Canadian Kennel Club. They did this on their own. It is attended by the Who’s Who in the sport
of Large Pack beagling, and in its short, 5-year history, has national sponsors, Regional Awards, the
Purina Top Ten awards, and its own Large Pack Hall of Fame. An event of this magnitude, the caliber
of dogs that compete, and the distances some of these beaglers travel (from both sides of the
Canadian/United States of America border) to put their best on the ground, can only be achieved by a
pure demonstration of dedication to the sport.
It was a 12-hour drive for me and
Dan Kane from our point of departure
in eastern Ontario to our destination,
Fundy Trail Beagle Club in St. John,
New Brunswick, Canada. Some folks
traveled even farther to attend, but the
beaglers who came down from
Newfoundland… honestly, I’ve
never seen anything up to what they
have to do to run their dogs with ours.
For the sake of abbreviation, I will
refer to these amazing beaglers as the
“Newfies�, a name coined by
American troops stationed on the
somewhat remote, northern island of
Newfoundland during World War II.
The Newfies arrived about a half
hour before us on Thursday evening.
I’ll throw a few names out there
for you; Gary Rumsey, David Chafe,
Bud Constantine, and Steve Rumsey.
I’ve included a map of some of
the routes taken by beaglers attending
this trial. If you don’t know
where these places are, or youâ
€™ve never made the trip, it wonâ
€™t mean as much to you until you
see it on a map. To get to this trial,
the Newfies make a 12 to 14-hour
drive across their island Province to
catch a ferry that will carry them and
their van, loaded with dogs and
belongings to Cape Breton, Nova
Scotia. This begins a 6 to 8-hour ride
on the water, and they are at the
mercy of the weather, so they begin
their trek a day early to allow for
delays. After they dock at Cape
Breton, they have another 6 to 8-
hour drive across Nova Scotia and
down to St. John, New Brunswick.
For those unable to make the trip,
their dogs are brought and handled
by those who can go. A round trip
accounting for these guys amounts to
a minimum of 40 hours on the road
and 12 hours at sea. By the time this
dance is over, the Newfies and their
hounds will have traveled a difficult
1800 miles on land and 192 nautical
miles by sea. This is a tough bunch of
die-hard beaglers, but what
gentlemen they are; I never heard one
complaint. They were happy to be
there, they support this trial every
year, and they bring some stiff
competition along in those dog crates.
Here’s a big KUDOS to the
beaglers of Newfoundland!
Over the course of our 720-mile one-way drive, I watched the landscape change from the granite
hills scattered with colorful maples, oaks, and pines of Lansdowne in eastern Ontario, across the
flatter “Indiana farm-looking� lands of Quebec, to the rugged, evergreen-laced hills of New
Brunswick. On every horizon, the hills take on a purple hue, and the dense forest of pines and
spruces jut straight up out of rocky ground. Along much of this stretch, the New Brunswick main
highway, there is a tall fence with cattle chute type gates that steer and divert the local moose
population away from the highway.
New Brunswick landscape.
The Newfie dogs arrived first.
Courtesy of Mapquest.com
(Click on certain pics to see some
full-sized versions of interest.Wave your mouse over
them to see which ones are linked.)