Date =                            29th November 2015

Run Number =             1650                                                                                                                                     

Venue =                        The Talley Ho!

Location=                     Barkway

Beer =                           GK IPA; Doombar; 

Hares =                         Fliptop, Pepé le Pew, Paxo

Runners =                    10

Virgins =                        0

Visitors =                       0                                        

Après Hashers =         0

Newies =                       0

Hounds =                      0

Total =                          10

Membership =             Who was the Hare?


            Well the recent weeks of good, warm & often sunny weather of late was certainly missing thing morning, though the RA had made sure that the early morning rain had been blown away by the strong gusts of wind, which was probably a fair deal.  So, the Pack were left with moody looking grey clouds that would be suited in a painting by Turner.

This week’s turnout was on the low side as these grey skies may have put a few off, as well as later being reported that there were a few who weren’t feeling so Tickety-Boo this morning.  Two who were there & looked a slightly bit jaded, from the previous Day’s Full Moon, were My Lil’ & Mr X. 

On the way in the Hare had called Mr X to say that he was setting off on an almost ‘Live Trail’, which led the GM to question who was the Hare? 

Originally the Hare was going to be Mr X, but the Full Moon on Saturday put pay to that idea, so Fliptop said that he would step-in as Hare.  But then during the week Fliptop remembered an important Family member’s birthday was planned for this Sunday!  Paxo then called Mr X mid-week to say that he would take over from Fliptop, but he would have to set it live.  Then Pepé le Pew threw his hat in to the ring by saying that he would take over from Paxo, so it all now seemed to be sorted, until Paxo ended up taking back the reigns as Pepé le Pew dropped out in preference of Haring the next weekend, which left Paxo back in the ‘driving seat’ & he opted to set it ‘Live’! [I hope you are keeping up with all of this? – Ed]

The Pack arrived to find that there have been a few changes to the old Pub, most of which would be discovered après Trail.  Tent Packer & Mr X wound up Sloppy Seconds by telling him about the number of possible Hares for this Trail & that in the end it was Sparky who had set it!  Sloppy Seconds was taken in for a bit but then he was relieved to hear that Sparky wasn’t the Hare after all! [Sloppy Seconds was not alone at the thought of that prospect! – Ed]

Sparky arrived at the Pub & was too busy getting changed as the GM called the opening Circle together, having completed the introductions there was no Hare to call in to explain what was out there for the Hash to encounter, then the RA received a phone call from the Hare to warn of some skittish young horses that were running loose on one part on the Trail & that Hash Hush had to be observed!  Sparky, especially, was warned that there should be no Hash Horn at this point.  Sparky left his horn behind as he started off on the Trail.

It took a while for the outbound Trail to be discovered, with Pepé le Pew & Milf heading southward down London road on its way by the local petrol; station & out of the village.  They were called back as the rest had found the Trail on their way up northward as the London road becomes the High Street, the Trail was on the left, west, side of the street as there was only a path on this side that runs along by the old red-brick wall of a large property until it reached a point directly across from Gas lane, a double set of arrows pointed over to run down this eastward dead-end lane.

Alfa Male, Max Factor, Sloppy Seconds, My Lil’ were off down Gas Lane as Mr X followed on with a bag of flour the Hare left behind for a ‘volunteer’ to mark the CKS.  The Pack passed by a very nice large new home to the north of Gas Lane, built well back form the High Street homes.

The tarmac soon ended & the Trail took to the footpath that cuts diagonally north-eastward over a small enclosed field.  Milf, Pepé le Pew & Sparky eventually caught up as the Dust led out in to the larger fields beyond the hedgerow.

Alfa Male went wrong at the CHK on the driveway down to a remote detached home of Rushing Wells, he was right over at the opposite end of the field before he realised that there was no Dust over there. 

The Trail would make its way down through the property of Rushing Wells, some admired the Tesla Car that was parked up there.  Tesla are electric cars that are named after ‘Nikola Tesla’ who as an early pioneer in AC electricity & rival to Edison’s DC powered power grid for homes in the US & the rest of the world.

The Trail left the concrete area around the one-story home & then took the Hash over the river Quinn to head out over the fields to the east of Barkway.  It was a long stretch that was fairly straight as it stretched out over the open ground that the wind rushed across at times.  It led to the corner of Earl’s Wood, a large plantation with no rights of way through it.

The Dust kept to the footpath as it became hedged-in on the south side, with the woodland to the north this route became sheltered from the wind.  A CHK was found before the end of the south-east corner of the wood, Max Factor & Alfa Male both went through the hedgerow to search in the harrowed crop field to the south but they would soon be back on the main path as it makes its way out in to an enclosed paddock at the Grove.

My Lil’, Sloppy Seconds, Milf, Sparky, Pepé le Pew & Tent Packer all headed further out eastward toward Bury Farm, but after reaching the wooden fence & the gate to the old outbuildings, they were seen cutting back through the paddock to its northwest corner, Alfa Male, Max Factor & Mr X cut off this part to catch up with the FRBs on their way over to the east edge of Earl’s wood. 

The Dust ran along the Track up to a CHK where it joins the east/west track via a T-junction that splits Brickhill Grove from Earl’s wood, there a Held CHK was found.  While the Pack regrouped at the Held CHK, Sparky went off in to the sparse undergrowth to go scare the squirrels in the Grove before the Pack started searching once again. 

Pepé le Pew decided that he would search off to the east & he would go a very long way out beyond the large block of stacked up hay-bales before My Lil’ discovered the Dust out in the opposite direction.  Pepé le Pew was called back!

The Pack were now heading along the stony drive back toward Barkway, along the way it was noticed that the signs to state that Earl’s wood was private were slightly over the top brass plaques.  The Pack’s calling of “On!” caught the attention of the sheep grazing in the fenced of field south of the large house at Cokenach, they were soon head down again eating the grass as the Hash seemed to be of little interest!.

The Trail left the northwest corner of Earl’s wood, now there was a blast of cold blustery air as the Hash dashed over the open gap & followed the driveway down to Earl’s wood cottage, thankfully this was lined with a hedge on either side, which acted as a much needed wind-break. 

Off of the stony drive to follow the footpath as it changed tack slightly to go around the outside of the fenced off gardens of the not so small Earl’s Wood cottage, this now ran through the small orchard that sits beside the grounds of the cottage.

The next CHK was found by a junction in the path, Alfa Male had now gone a long way over to the southwest but no Dust was to be found on the path out to dead-end of the short ‘Burrs lane’ that leads back in to Barkway.  He would come all the way back to join the rest in crossing a small wooden bridge over the stream like Quinn, once over this the Dust would take the Hash around part of the outer edge of the Recreation ground, where the local Football team were busy playing a match.

Also on the Recreation ground were an area of kids play equipment, over in the opposite corner a new Pavilion that one local ran the Cambridge half marathon to help raise funds for its construction.

            Out of the recreation ground by way of an alleyway footpath between two of the homes to emerge on to the High Street beside the village War Memorial.  Double Arrows pointed the way straight across on to the elbow like bend of the Royston road, which it makes its way out to the west.

The large imposing metal aerial of the RAF Barkway Mast dominates the skyline as it sits in the farm fields behind the homes on this side of the village, this was constructed as a part of the RAF’s GEE war time & post war Navigation system which was developed by the US in to the LORAN navigation system, GPS would make this a redundant featured in the Cold War years it was used as a part of the NATO/USAAF/RAF Early warning system but now it is a silent giant.

After a short way along the Royston road there were more double arrows & these pointed the way over to the southbound drive off of the first bend in the road.  The Pack had now become a bit stretched out, with Pepé le Pew & Max Factor following on behind Sloppy Seconds & Mr X, the latter was still marking the way as the route led on behind the Churchyard of Mary Magdalene.

The Dust now came out to the end of Church lane & a CHK was found.  By this time the likes of Milf, Tent Packer, My Lil’ & Sparky were well out of sight & earshot.  So, Sloppy Seconds decided to check it out around the bend & away from the High street, Mr X marked the CHK followed on after Sloppy didn’t come back & this led on to Max Factor & Pepé le Pew also heading the wrong way.

Mr X was told by a girl out walking that the other man had gone this way & that gave Mr X a false sense of hope that he was ‘On’ Trail.  Eventually Sloppy & Mr X realised that there was no Dust at all on this route, for by the time they reached a duck pond they should have seen Dust, especially on a small brick pump house that was well out of view from the CHK.

            Max Factor & Pepé le Pew were turned back to the Church by the returning Mr X & Sloppy Seconds & having reached the CHK again, with a bag of Flour still in hand the RA said that he would mark the Trail out to the High Street, as an official Short Cut whether it went that way or not as they were too close to the main artery through the village, but there was no need to fear the Trail the Dust was found down by the old Fitch-gate to the Church & this would lead back on by the old ‘Wagon wash’ for cleaning carts & wagons in times gone by when this village was on the Coaching-route to Cambridge & the north from London.

Now it was simple task of heading southward along the archetypical village.  Passing by the village Duck pond, then the local School, on the opposite side of the road was one very vividly painted house that did stand out. Then there was the old red-brick building of the ‘Reading House’ which is now home to a book lending service.  After the roadworks on the High Street the Trial led the Hash by the Stallibrass Alms Houses, incidentally there is a cottage currently advertised as ‘available for Ladies of retirement age & above, who come from the village, Anstey, Nuthampstead or Reed’.

 The Hash would find the On Inn just before the double arrows that were on the way out.  The Tally Ho! Is the last remaining of the 20 odd pubs that Barkway used to boast of, it is name is a reminder that the Puckeridge Hunt used to come out this way in its search for their quarry.

The Pack found the warmth of the Pub most welcome, it took Sparky a long time to get changed after the Run.  With not much for the RA to see on the Trail, having been at the back to mark the route & the CHKs for any late-comers, that there weren’t.  So, the Hare’s Down-Down was put off for a week.  Paxo got in an order of chips from the Pub before the Pack all went their separate ways.