The idea is to locate the fox or foxes by means of radio direction finding. The fox transmits a signal on a set timetable on a previously announced frequency; be aware of last minute frequency changes due to interference. The 'hounds' then have to locate the fox by means of measuring the strength of the received signal from various locations that the hounds decide to travel to between the foxes transmissions.
What do you need to go Foxhunting?
- A means of transport
- Small beam antenna
- Mobile (or preferably handheld) radio for the frequency being used
- Map, normally OS Landranger Series, for MSARS we tend to use map#198
- Pencil, ruler and compass
- Variable attenuator is nice to be able to reduce the received signal when you get close to the fox
What do you have to do?
The hounds normally start from one location, for MSARS, Cyprus Road Car Park is usual.
Make sure your radio is tuned to the correct frequency, and on the first transmission swing the beam to get the maximum signal level.
Mark the direction of the signal on the map with the aid of a compass if your sense of direction is not good. From here proceed to another point where you can park up safely, preferably 90 degrees from the direction of the signal and take another reading when the fox transmits for the second time.
Repeat this a third time and you should have a triangle at the crossing points of the pencil lines. The fox should be in that area, but beware, 'it ain't necessarily so' - signal reflections can cause havoc!
Repeat the measurements until you run the fox to its Earth. The stronger the signal the more attenuation you can use until you find the fox. If you do not have access to an attenuator you use your beam horizontally, or remove the antenna all together, just using the handheld if you are very close but cannot find the fox.
You may need to abandon your vehicle in the latter stages if the fox has been devious in location.
Foxes should be located in a publicly accessible area, but not necessarily in plain sight.
This is not an exhaustive guide but an insight into how to go about it for the first time.