This book is about Ed Vance’s 25-plus years of hunting with hounds in California, Nevada, Utah and Montana for both bear and mountain lion. As a young man who knew nothing about hound hunting, Vance pursued knowledge of the sport with tenacity and eventually became an expert outfitter. He traveled across the country to find the right hounds and to spend time with veteran hunters and hound breeders from which he could learn. His passion was hunting his hounds and outfitting was a means to an end – to live a lifestyle of hunting – which he did. Ed followed his dogs on foot for as much as twenty miles in a single day, but he also loved to hunt off horseback. He had a truck designed to carry his horse and dogs in the back of his pickup.
Ed Vance is an enjoyable writer with a story-telling style of communication that’s easy to follow and identify with. I found the book hard to put down. It’s a no-nonsense type read with just the right amount of details to tell the story, while clearly showing the reader who Ed really was. It’s a solid mix of hunting adventure, hound hunting action, and a look into the human-related challenges of this lifestyle. Vance’s incredible adventures chasing hounds before modern GPS and telemetry will make you ponder if you’d have had the grit to hunt like he did. The book also sheds light on the cultural and wildlife-management tragedy of California outlawing lion, and now bear hunting with hounds. I would highly recommend this book to houndsmen and non-houndsmen alike.
Listen to our Podcast with Ed: