Date = 27th April 2015
Run Number = 1612
Venue = The Farmer’s Boy
Beer = GK Golden IPA; Doombar; St George’s
Hares = Ketchup & Jaron
Runners = 15
Virgins = 1
Visitors = 1
Après Hashers = 0
Newies = 0
Hounds = 0
Total = 17
Membership = Celebrating Ketchup’s coming out for Hibernation!
During the day various Hashers received various forms of contact from Ketchup, calls, text messages & emails were sent out to check that he was the nights Hare! Once this was confirmed it was a case of getting over to the Farmer’s Boy, with Jaron, & arriving there to set off some 30 minutes before the majority of the Hash arrived.
While the Hares scuttled around the Trail, the rest of the Pack gathered in the Car Park across from the Pub where they discovered that there is a new looking Petanque pitch there, or a large square of pebbles! Anyhow, care was needed to avoid the hundreds of charred nails that are scattered across one part of the car park, looks like they had burnt some old pallets there at one time & just haven’t cleaned up afterwards.
This week saw a Newie Jason & Beth a Virgin, the Newie coming from Guernsey & even the sight of Ewok wearing a Guernsey Harriette’s T-shirt didn’t put him off of staying to join the Pack. A very brief idea of what the Hash Markings was started to be explained to the Newbies before the JM called the Circle together. The Pack were welcomed to the correct Run number, it was all very brief [We should appreciate this as the rambling GM is back in a couple of weeks! – Ed] then Paxo added that the Hare was out there still setting the Trail.
Without further ado the Pack were ushered out on to Brickendon lane, to head off to the northeast passing the Old Thatched, black & white building of the Five Horseshoes which sits amongst the other homes on the gently turning road toward the north, Mr X pointed this out & the fact that it hasn’t been a Pub for Donkey’s Years. In fact it ceased being a ‘Beer House’ in 1956 when it was sold by McMullens, with the proviso that it would not be used as a Pub again.
Along the way Mr X chatted to the Newbies to reinforce what Herts Markings were & then going out to Hash on Guernsey, the infamous 29 hours Flight out there last year was brought up!
The likes of Sloppy Seconds, Max Factor, Alfa Male & My Lil’ had some competition this week, as Mark E Mark was back & putting in an effort, but this week saw Zing-a-long-a-max showing up after quite a long absence from the fold of Herts Hash.
Passing by the row of very bold yellow coloured houses along the lanes’ edge, Zing-a-long-a-max told the RA that he had to be at this Trail as he once was a milkman who’s round that took in this area, but even he had never noticed the cottage that was the Five Horseshoes further back.
The Trail passed on the opposite side of the road to the quaint little Chapel of The Holy Cross & St Alban, soon after this the Hash were off of the road, which was a relief there where those driving Chelsea Tractors in these parts who seem oblivious to the speed limits - as a black Rangerover came steaming through in to the northern end of this rustic village.
A CHK was found by the pond on the green area where the Village Well in what was Bourne Orchard, Mark E Mark headed off on the track due south on a bridleway beside the farm house & its walled gardens. Mark E Mark was soon coming back as the Trail was found on the footpath heading out eastward over the fenced in fields, the RA recalled when this area was once a maze made out of Maize! The route would cross over the uncapped driveway that leads in to the Celtic Harmony Camp that sits within Bourne Wood.
Along the way there were a few signs that must be for the Kids who visit the educational camp, but there was one sign that attracted the RA’s attention as it asked Walkers not to upset the land owner’s pheasants! This made Mark E Mark & Paxo laugh, no pulling faces at the game birds then?
Alfa Male, Max Factor, Sloppy Seconds, My Lil’ were quickly over the small wooden footbridge over the hedged-in ditch separating the fields, the smaller field being dotted with several pheasant feeders. They were soon on their way by more hedgerows & heading out toward the various buildings & units that cluster around the small area of Monk’s Green.
Once out through to the centre of the farm area, a CHK was found on the narrow, single track lane. Mark E Mark & Mr X were not convinced that the Trail would follow the track to the northwest, as there is not much out that way in the way of Footpaths, however this didn’t stop others from Checking that way.
A Call of “On!” came from the east side of Monks Green farm, which led the others to follow on between the Holiday lets, business units & various other buildings here, Max Factor came back toward Mr X & Mark E Mark for she had already found the Trail & was as proud as punch to have done so it warranted coming back to tell everyone! The Trail led out by the old Chicken units & Piggery to find the next CHK by a wide open entrance to a field, with a signed path over this to Jepps Wood in the east.
Mark E Mark searched off on the footpath, whereas Mr X chose to take to the Track beside the large farm units to head southward in to Brambles wood. There the RA would pick up the Trail & followed the Track as it turned to the Southeast. However, the Dust would soon run out & Mr X slowed up before having to turn around as Sloppy Seconds, My Lil, Mark E Mark, Alfa Male & Max Factor all made good on the RA’s mistake by picking up the Trail westward on a meandering desire line through the northern edge of the woodland, they swept up Paxo, Skip & the Newies, Beth & Jason up with along them.
Mr X took his time before entering this section of the ancient woodland, he marked the Trail with a couple of Sticks so that Psycho, No Eye Deer, TBT OBE & Fliptop at the back of the Hash. Ewok was with them, but having discussed food for the next Weekend with Psycho & No Eye Deer, she took off to gallop along & put in an effort to start to catch-up with the rest. When she caught up with Mr X, Ewok got to hear about the hot & spicy coleslaw that Psycho makes. [If he thought it hot, then it must be! – Ed]
On the way through the woodland the Trail would dip every so often through shallow patches of Shiggy that most tried to avoid by side stepping them, though some patches of mud were a too bit large of that. As the Trail moved westward the Pack passed below the bottom edge of the Celtic Harmony Camp, in one field several Bosses could be seen for the camp’s archery field.
The next enclosed field contained some old goats, Paxo pointed this out to the RA & Mr X commented on the fact he was more worried about the Old Goats of the Hash, as Skip came running up behind him! Paxo then turned his attention to pointing out a ‘fearsome tiger’ in the wood, this one being made of fibre-glass.
Further along there was a large figure of a Bear standing rampant, this encouraged the RA to shout out ‘Help! Help! Here come the Bears!” à lá the Hair-bear bunch cartoon! Just a bit further along & the Trail would come to a halt as the First Held Check was discovered by the footpath out of the wood & through the horse paddocks leading back to the Bourne Orchard.
It was here that it was noticed that My Lil’ & Paxo were matching Hash-shirts. [How many do they have each? – Ed] rumours spread about the two phoning each other up to deliberately arrange this clash! A change of subject as more talk about the experiences of some of Herts Hash with the Guernsey Harriettes, as well as other Hashes & events around the globe! Soon it was time to move on & the way was already known as Mark E Mark had scouted things out in the section of pine forest.
Another arrow made of sticks was laid down to show the Back-markers the way, which was needed as Ewok admitted that earlier those behind had walked & talked, they had taken their eyes off of the Trail & gone astray! Once through the plantation, the Trail came out on to one of the wide forestry tracks, Zing-a-long-a-max was soon off over this rugged rutted southwest to northeast track & in to the next plantation.
As Ewok ran down the slope toward Broxbourne Wood on a path toward the Paradise Park end of the wood, she heard Mr X mention the fact that there was a ‘Dogging spot’ in a car park somewhere down near that neck of the woods. He admitted that he had never heard of ‘Dogging’ until a few years ago when Paxo mentioned it after the Hash were going to have a picnic at the car park, Paxo said it was in the Hertford Mercury about the going on’s that had been occurring there. That picnic Trail was moved when the RA had read the local press report!
Zing-along-a-max started back up the gentle tree covered hillside, after he had run out of Dust. Max Factor & Alfa Male came back with him just as the others went off in to the denser pine plantation on a crafty turn off of the southerly track that the Hare had set.
This was a long trot arcing around to emerge from the plantation & on to a more established Track splitting the different woodlands that make up the whole of Broxbourne wood. Another Held CHK was found on the edge of the wood before the Picnic area, of course more Dogging tales ensued, as My Lil’ said that he has to go there once every two weeks! There were enough lurid stories, which made the Pack glad that Pebbledash wasn’t there this week! It was also added that the off white/grey Donnington shirts worn by My Lil’ & Paxo would be good at masking certain stains, & we are not talking of wallpaper paste!
Back to the Trail, this now avoided the notorious car park & moved eastward near the Special Brook, then out on a rather nice soft man-made path heading to the west end of the woodland to Pembridge lane, Dust led up a few yards to a CHK on the end of Devil’s Lane.
The Devil’s Lane runs through Starch Grove toward the edge of the Brickendon Golf Course, Mark E Mark was keen on this & he dragged the other FRBs down there, though My Lil’ & Mr X weren’t as convinced for they knew it had to go a long, long way down to White Webbs lane & then along this to pass over the Ponsbourne Rail Tunnel, before coming back north-eastwards to finish a long loop back up over the golf course to Brickenden.
It was now getting darker & the dusky light meant it would be too far to go on the early Monday Trails of the year, so Mr X & My Lil’ soon discovered that they were correct on going back to look up the lane on the shortest route back to Brickendon. There were narrow verges to use to avoid the passing traffic, before the lane widens on its approach in to the village, just beyond the entrance to Brickendon Golf Club the On In was found.
When the Keenies had changed & entered the Pub, they expect to see TBT OBE, Fliptop & Psycho in there, but none of them took the possible short cut by the horse paddocks & instead did the whole trail. They would come in about 15 minutes after the first of the Keenies were back.
The Pack enjoyed the Ales before heading out to the rear garden for the Down-Downs, while most took the external route, TBT OBE had to go through the restaurant end of the Pub! Anyhow, the Hare was rewarded for a good Trail, that he didn’t know he was setting until earlier that day! He was joined by Mr X who was last week’s Hare.
Other Down-Downs included Paxo & My Lil’ for matching shirts & a knowledge of ‘Dogging’, after this there was the return of Zing-a-long-a-max to run part of his old Milk Round! The Tow Newbies of Beth & Jason had theirs for completing their first Herts Hash Trail! The Hashsit went to Ewok for asking why Paxo hadn’t taken her to the Dogging Spot!