Date =                            17th August 2015

Run Number =             1632                                                                                                                                     

Venue =                        The Cross Keys (The Jolly Tossers)

Location=                     Gustard Wood

Beer =                           Side Pocket for a Toad; Doombar; plus two others!

Hares =                         Tent Packer

Runners =                    12

Virgins =                       0

Visitors =                      0                                        

Aprčs Hashers =         0

Newies =                       3

Hounds =                      0

Total =                          15

Membership =             Better Marked than the previous week’s Trail? (In Parts!)!


            The turnout this week seemed to be low as the Pack began to arrive for the Trail, the skies were overcast but there was no threat of rain at all, perhaps it was down to being peak holiday time?  Anyhow, there was a late surge in numbers as Tent Packer & Mrs Mallet’s Daughter, Tent Peg, arrived with her two daughters Sophia & Isobel.  These three boosted the Pack to 15!

            It seemed that the GM was in a hurry to get through the introductions, he was soon on to telling the Pack about the Trail & the words “Its better marked than last week!” raised a few eyebrows & received a number of “Bitchy!” calls.  Also mentioned was a ‘sweet stop’, short cuts, the chance of seeing a ‘Back to the Future’ Delorean car & the worst bit of “You should all be back before it gets dark!”

The Pack were ushered away over the small green area in front of the Pub car park, on his way through the wispy tall grass the Hare broken open one packet of sweets for his Sophia & Isobel, even ‘Mr “Women & Children First!”’ Paxo said that this wasn’t right before the Hash was properly underway.

 Beyond the small football goals on the green space & the Dust led into a part of one of the wooded stretches of Gustard wood that lines road out in to Blackmore End.  Vigorous Screw Balls asked Mr X if he this week he was feeling ‘Knackered?’ but this weekend he had not been away Hashing & was feeling a lot more with it than on the previous two weeks. 

Max Factor, Alfa Male, Vigorous Screw Balls & Mr X led the way out to the lane of the Kimpton road, where a carefully placed blob of Dust on the start of the path into the next section of woodland across the lane lured Alfa Male, Max Factor & Vigorous Screw Balls in amongst the trees to the west, but the RA had other ideas & he turned up the lane to head north-westward in to Blackmore End.  Mr X would find the Dust heading along by the upmarket homes on the west of the lane, so he called out “On!” as he followed this to the end of the isolated old section of the original lane.

Once at the end of the dead-end lane arrows directed the way over to the east side of the lane & in through a gap in the hedgerow to the crop fields north of where the Pub lies.  As soon as the Hash entered the farm field, there was a notice saying “No Access to the wood!” which mean with no path over the field to Hall Wood there was only one way to progress & that was straight along beside the roadside hedgerow to the north.

The ground was as hard a concrete as the Pack made their way through to the field’s northwest corner, there a CHK was found in the corresponding corner of the next farm field, Vigorous Screw Balls set off to look through hedgerow but the traffic put her off of venturing any further as there is no sign of a footpath along this part of the road to Kimpton.  Mr. X on the other hand fancied following his gut -instinct & take to the path out over to Kimpton Hall Farm, this would prove correct as the FRBs headed along the grass track by a fenced off paddock that is home for a few large white bovines.

Max Factor & Alpha Male made up lost ground tom pass by Mr X & Vigorous Screw Balls as they stopped to say ‘good evening’ to a Gent out walking his elderly Labrador.  Alfa & Max would find the next CHK where the Hall lane track begins by leaving the farm & heads down north-eastward in to Kimpton, but Alfa Male & Max Factor were stopped in their tracks down the hedge-in track, just as Mr X pointed out the other option of the north-westward path through the valley of wheat that was ready for harvesting.

Vigorous Screw Balls was soon down the north-westerly footpath through the wheat, the Trail dipped with the contour of the land & rose up, along the way overhanging ears of wheat scratched at bare Hash legs.  Up ahead of Vigorous Screw Balls & Mr X was a bloke out walking his dogs, one hound was yapping at the on-coming Hashers & needed a lot of shouting at by his owner to get him to follow on.

The Land rose up once again to find a CHK on the top of the ridge, where another path runs across it from northeast to southwest.  While Vigorous Screw Balls chose the wrong south-westerly option, Mr X took to the opposite direction to follow on behind the dog-walker, who was acting a little strange as he kept looking around to see what the FRBs were up to! Behind him.  He eventually put his dogs back on leads & skulked off through the hedgerow in to Kimpton.

Mr X was on track as he led the way up to the Held CHK at a point where the path reaches the hedgerow on very edge of Kimpton, a bright pink screen covered up the new houses under construction on the other side of the hedgerow.  The other completed new homes were not there either on the last time the Hash passed through this way!

It took a while for the rest to catch up, My Lil’ & Paxo arrived before Pebbledash & Ewok (in their matching t-shirts) & they weren’t alone in being in the twinned T-shirt stakes as Alfa Male & Max Factor both had Herts Shirts on, things will change when you’ve Hashed a bit longer & the T-shirts start to amass!

The Hare finally came running along with Sophia & Isobel to make it to the Held CHK, the sweets were soon dished out.  For some, the Starbursts were not as good as the old Opal Fruits & the blackcurrant ones tasted nothing like blackcurrants! 

Back on the subjects of T-shirts & the RA asked Tent Packer were he got a Kraków EuroHash Hare’s T-shirt from, it turns out that Tent Packer bought it out in Poland, Mr X Knew that Tent Packer wasn’t a Hare for any EuroHash Trail but Tent Packer admitted he was prepared to pay for it as he doesn’t have any ‘Hare’ Shirts for when he sets a Trail.

The RA took time to tell those around him about the sale of the White Horse, a place he used to visit years ago &  several times a ‘Herts CAMRA Community Pub of the Year’ that McMullen’s closed & sold off for a lesser bid than a consortium of locals who wanted to buy it.  At the moment the locals are resisting the planning application to turn this community asset in to a private residence.

Anyhow, before TBT OBE & Tent Peg arrived, the Keenies were showed the way down through the hedgerow & down the steps by the edge of the construction site to run down in to Kimpton proper.  As the Trail was about to turn to the east & head down the High Street, Mr X explained to Vigorous Screw Balls that in the other direction, at the west end of the village were the once famous ‘Watercress Beds’ in the river Mimram.

It wasn’t far down the High Street that the next CHK was found, near to an alleyway leading away on the north side of the road at the Junction with the start of Claggy road.  From here there were some who took a short cut directly down the High Street, since the suspected there would be a loop to the north?  They were not wrong, but they didn’t know the extent of how far the others would have to go to on as this excursion north of the village, climbing some 180 feet in altitude up the hillside!

If Sludge was present on this Trail & on the short cut along the High Street, he would have said “There were no T’s to prevent him taking this option!” but there was no need for the absent Sludge’s philosophy as My Lil was there on hand to mention this as if he was Sludge’s understudy!

The loop would head up Park Lane, then up the hill side as the lane turns in to an uncapped track in to Park wood.  The Trail would keep heading northward before turning to the east & crossing the Hitchin Road at Cuckold Cross, a little further eastward then the Trail would descend back in to Kimpton on the Hitchin road just above Bury Farm. 

Back in to the village & the Trail turned right to head back along the High Street toward where the Pack had been before, but before ever getting that far the Trail crossed to the south side of the high Street & then took to one of the numerous footpaths leading between the homes to run behind them & head southward up out of the village.

The Trail now led the Hash up through the recreation grounds, TBT OBE, who had taken the short cut through the High Street on his own, had missed this turn off & continued eastward until he reached Ballslough lane, he too now had a climb of 180 feet in altitude to get back on the level.  He would make his way up the steep climb on the tarmac as it lead southwards, it was a long walk for him as he followed this lane all the way back to the On Inn.

At one point TBT OBE was worried that he was on the wrong route (Which he was) & he asked a ‘proper runner’ passing by him “Is there a Pub up this way?” the runner replied that there was & if TBT OBE was thirsty he could have a drink of the runners water from his water bottle.  TBT OBE turned down the offer as he realized he was near the Beer!

Back on the Trail & just beyond the local Bowls club the Trail would turn westward to run along through the top edge of the crop fields in the valley west of Kimpton, there were a couple of options off to the north & these were searched by Mr X & My Lil’ but no Dust was found on any of them, instead the Trail just seemed to take to Hall lane again. 

The Delorean that was mentioned was on one of these Dustless northbound options, but it turned out to be an AC on the back of the low-loader & not the Iconic Back to the Future Car.  Mr X said it wouldn’t see you though the week, let alone to take you to Oct 21st 2015 (Yes Folks, that is the year Marty Mc Fly & Doc Brown go forward in time to in to the Film).

Next along the Hall lane was the chance to search through the farmyard of Kimpton Hall Farm, but this only lead back around to the private road the ‘Delorean’ was on & this had been searched!  With the Hash Markings being “Better than the Previous week’s” the RA & My Lil’ could not fathom out where it was supposed to go & once out by the enclosure of white cattle, they both decided to follow the Out Trail back Inn, since there were no marking to direct them otherwise.  Perhaps the trail was supposed to be like a lollipop shape?

On the way back up on the level, Mr X & My Lil’ kept looking over to the other side of the fields to see if any newish red Herts Hash shirts of the FRBs could be seen on their way Inn over there, but there was nothing visible on the way to Hall Wood, nor could any calling of “On! On!” either.

Mr X & My Lil’ arrived back at the On Inn, expecting to see the rest already there, but there was no sign of anyone else.  It was a while before TBT OBE arrived after his off Trail experiences.  Still it took time before the rest started to come back Inn from the same way that the RA & My Lil’ had come back, just as the light started to fade under the overcast skies.

By the time Tent Peg, Sophia & Isobel were followed in by the rest of the Pack it was gone 20:30 hrs, Tent Peg didn’t hang about & packed the kids in to the car & drove them home, as no doubt it was heading toward their bed time, or was it to avoid listening to her Dad’s the GM’s aprčs Trail speech? 

Tent Packer ordered a few baskets of chips, which were most welcome & some wondered whether these were to appease the Pack after a longish Trail?  It worked!

The Down-Downs went to the Hare for setting the Trail; Vigorous Screw Balls had hers for it possibly being her last regular Herts Trail; Pebbledash & Ewok were out for matching outfits & unlike Max Factor & Alfa Male, they aren’t marrying each other!