At the end of October the woods and fields were at their autumn peak as the Sugarloaf Mountain Bird Dog Club hosted their annual fall trial. The Freeland Kennel Club grounds near Weatherly, PA were groomed and all was in place this October 28, 2023 morning for the continuation of the tradition of competing bird dogs that goes back to the the 1960s on these grounds.
Hunting in the first brace, Super Storm Liz set a standard that the other 17 competitors could not surpass as she earned the first place ribbon. “Liz” hunted the course with her remarkably fast pace. She virtually flies from one objective to another. Even with this speed, she does not outrun her nose. Proof of this was that she rang up 3 sharply executed finds. Her first find was just 100 yards off the breakaway. When her bracemate failed to back, this did not unhinge Liz. She stayed high and tight throughout the lengthy flushing attempt. Birds were reluctant to fly at times due to the light rain that fell throughout most of the trial.
Liz registered two more finds spaced out along the hunting course. She was found pointing in a hedgerow and then near the end of the course. No other dogs rang up more finds than Liz. While there were quite a few other dogs with multiple mannerly finds, it was Liz’s hard driving, classy running, sharp bird work and strong finish that had her eclipse the field.