The Countryman's Weekly


September 21
07:06 2022

That first autumn session on the lamp

By Penny Taylor.

THERE is something special about the first lamping session of the year. We have biked and run the dogs for weeks and they’re bouncing, raring to set foot on those fields that have been out of bounds all year.

The sense of anticipation is overwhelming, and even after so many years I still get that thrill of nervous excitement, that tension in the pit of my stomach, as I check the lamp and battery. Slip lead! Where is it? Probably in the bottom of a game bag somewhere.

I have never used a custom slip lead, preferring to use a rope lead looped through itself, with the rope handle bit around my wrist. It serves just as well as a slip lead designed for coursing, and there is no messing about with catches which may or may not be as secure as they should be; neither is there any fiddling about trying to fasten it properly again after a run.


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