The eleventh annual Hotchkiss Sheep Camp Stock Dog Trials will be occurring May 9th, 10th, and 11th, bringing along an array of events, items for purchase, and a great experience for every ranching enthusiast and layperson alike.
Come watch these expertly trained dogs perform a variety of tasks guided by their handlers, and be amazed at the accuracy and detail the dogs achieve at a simple whistle from their owner—and keep in mind that the sheep have no prior training. Using a combination of nine commands, the handler directs the dog to perform the trials in order to gain points. Wilda Bahr, a renowned trainer and judge of dog trials, will be presiding over the events, while Les Mergelman, a veteran announcer, will be describing the events for the spectators’ benefit. At lunch breaks, Judge Wilda Bahr will narrate a demonstration in order to allow the spectators to get a better grasp on the judging, point assignment, and overall process of the runs.
If at any point a break is needed from the dog runs, there are several alternative attractions worth visiting. Stop by a sheep shearing demonstration all day Saturday, view a variety of trials artwork, including Jennifer Jung’s featured piece, “A Good Eye,” or stop by one of the many vendors for some memorable souvenirs or a tasty meal.
The events will be taking place within walking distance of downtown Hotchkiss, Colorado, which boasts many of its own attractions, including restaurants, lodging, and various shops. Experience the town behind the trials over the course of the weekend.
An entry fee of $4 on Friday and $5 on Saturday and Sunday allows spectators to have access to the runs, beginning at 8 a.m. Friday and 7 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. For more information, visit the trials website, http://www.hotchkissdogtrials.com/index.html.