Monday, February 9, 2009
Summerville Youth Coon Hunt
The Summerville Chapter of the South Carolina Coon Hunter's Association held their annual youth coon hunt and bench show on February 7, 2009. The event draws kids from the area who are interested in the outdoors, and for some avid competitors they are competing for an invitation to the State Youth Coon Hunt to be held February 28 at the Webb Wildlife Center in Estill, S.C. The Summerville event is one of seven qualifying events throughout the Palmetto State that the S.C. Coon Hunters Association supports. For more information try the Internet at www.sccoonhunters.com. Their youth coon hunt tournaments are well established and really provide an excellent outlet for youths to stay connected with the outdoors through the tradition of coon hunting. The Summerville event features youth but requires efforts by parents, judges and hunting guides to provide the total experience. One note, no guns are allowed on these "hunts" becasue no racoons are harvested and the competion is "won" by the assigning of points when coon hounds perform in the woodlands at night. Great weekend weather brought out many participants with 9 youths in the bench show and 21 youths coon hunting. The 12 junior hunters (age 21 and under) and 9 senior hunters (age 13 - 17) go into the woods in groups, or "casts" and their coon hounds are judged when they "stike" the trail of a coon and when they "tree" a coon. Some say the call of the coon hounds when they strike and tree a racoon is the sweetest sound they ever heard! Hunt sponsors included Dog Days Supply, Millingport Hunting Supply, Bright Eyes Lights and Lowcountry marine. Photos are courtesy of Ed Kimmons and depict Sr. Division Sportsman award winner Matt Elkins with his father Brian, and Jr. Division Bench Show winner Katelyn Toto with her father and her dog, Busta.