Run Number = 1692/93/94
Venue = Henlow Lakes
Location= Henlow Bedfordshire
Beer = Various over the weekend
Hares = Mr X & My Lil’
Runners = 17/19/16
Virgins = 0
Visitors = 0
Newies = 0
Hounds = 1
Total = 18/20/17
Membership = Gone to the dogs!
Friday began with the Hash arriving at various times of the
afternoon & evening. Max Factor & Alfa Make had invited everyone to meet at
shed Pod for a barbeque at their lakeside fire pit, which was a large
metal cauldron & upon the grill were sausages, chops & ribs.
Over the weekend Mr X & My Lil' were billeted in Lodge 2, that had the name Woodpecker hanging outside the porch French-windows. In what was an ironic twist, that couldn't have been scripted by the Scribe, Skip found himself in 'Buzzard' Lodge. My Lil' wasted no time in getting an Old Buzzard joke in at Skip's expense!
But the comedy gold just grew for the next Lodge along, weekend home to Paxo, Ewok & Pepé le Pew when they arrived, but more importantly Pebbledash, who were given the ‘Swallow' Lodge! The rest gentle reader will be left to your imagination! [You wouldn't be far from the truth with what you just thought! - Ed]
The air outside of Max Factor & Alfa Male’s pod was filled with an aromatic smoke from seasoned wood burning in their fire pit, but from outside of the sheltered frontage overlooking the moat like lake, the drizzle began to fall so things became a little cozier as the Pack huddled up to take shelter.
Colin arrived & he had a few cans of ‘Slowly Tortoise' – The Old Wife Beating Juice, which he freely handed out, these were appreciated even by the non-lager drinkers when they tucked in to the chili sausages!
Max Factor went on to explain that Alfa Male had purchased the fine sausages & meats from Harlow Market, adding that the way the order was explained to the butcher, it left him believing that Max & Alfa were poor students, so he was more than generous with the topping up of the order.
The drizzle began to ease slightly as Mark E Mark & Lobby Lobster arrived with Louie, enough of a respite for My Lil' & Mr X to set off & mark the Pub Crawl Trail out of the lakes, then westward through the common land behind the newer small estate on the east of Henlow High Street.
A large black patch of burnt grass bore witness to a recent fire on the common then it was back to green, damp grass on the desire line to the southwestern corner of the common, those on the trail would have to duck down to pass through the gap in the wooden fencing, made a tad easier as one of the horizontal planks had been removed by the locals.
Having passed through the small orchard like enclosed area, the Trail passed out through a gap in the hedgerow to lead out on to the dead-end of Arlesey Road, once the old road but now cut off after the new roundabout was put in, this side street would led up to the Crown.
The humidity was still pretty high this evening, it was noticeable as soon as these two entered the Pub, which was packed with diners & drinkers. So, with a nice pint of Deuchars IPA in hand they settled for a bit a peace & sat outside.
By the time the first pint was finished there was no sign of the rest of the Hash, My Lil' was on his phone, which unlike popular belief doesn't come in a large red metal box, after BT phased out the icon Red Phone Box in most places & are now rare to see outside of London & other large cities.
Lobby Lobster answer My Lil’s pleas, saying that the Pack were on their way, with this news the two set off to mark the way up the High street & then off on to Park Lane, this would lead behind the Engineers Arms, the safer option than trying to get the Pack by the front of it without losing them!
The Five Bells was similar to the Crown, bustling with diners & not having a lot of space for drinkers! Anyhow, Colin had caught up with the Hares, he was with Sludge, then Psycho & Skip arrived. My Lil' was now under the belief that Sludge had driven there & not been ‘On Trail’ but Sludge was vindicated in his interrogation when he mentioned having to duck through the fence in the corner of the common!
Alfa Male, Max Factor, Lobby Lobster & Mark E Mark sat outside with Louie, as neither of the two Pubs were pooch friendly, probably to do with the number of diners? After a quick pint of Ruddles County, it was off the short way to the Engineers' Arms & the greatest & widest choice of Ales & Ciders that evening.
Spoilt for choice, the decisions were hard, but in the end the Pack settled in around the corner in the 'Games section' of the Pub. Well, this would turn in to a great evening as Max Factor got out the Jenga game. Far from being the "Game of firewood!" as Mr X described it, the Hash bore witness to some really interesting games that would definitely be in the Premier League' of Jenga.
It was amazing that the Harriettes could be so dexterous with their fingers [Whoa there Pebbledash! – Ed] at removing the wooden slats, while in contrast Mark E Mark's efforts with porky sausage like fingers raised a few laughs, he even threaten to get out his Cock & use that, which Brought the house down!
If the Jenga wasn't enough, a game of Uno was to follow, it was such great fun that the time flew by, before long it was closing time & a walk back to Woodpecker Lodge. A long enough walk that deserved a night cap of Port, as well as Honey Vodka entertained the troops until gone 02:30 Hrs.
Bacon butties were the order of the day, well they were for breakfast in Woodpecker Lodge. Mr X was up & ready to go off to set the Trail by 08:15, but he would not be seen again until after 11:00hrs due to Grate-Northern/Thameslink playing their usual trick with their Train set by cancelling the Train he should have been on, again due to lack of drivers!
Mr X called My Lil’ to explain he’s be late, meanwhile Sloppy Seconds, TBT OBE, Tim, Pepé le Pew, No Eye Deer & Whatever She Says had all arrived, two of the newer arrivals were unexpected & obviously don’t bother to respond to the emails & Farcebook when a request was put out for numbers!
Anyhoo, some enjoyed the bacon sarnies on offer at Woodpecker Lodge. Ketchup made sure that those in Woodpecker were also treated to Satan's Nuts (cashews covered in chili powder) which were very hot, plus chili pork scratchings which had slightly less heat intensity.
Finally Mr X arrived back at site & was eager to get things going, but Paxo & Pebbledash were only just starting to tick off the items on their Lodge Itinerary of the hundred or so items they would be accountable for if they were missing, unlike the Woodpecker Lodge, Swallow Lodge was missing a couple of items, so they had to report this to the site office & this would take some time.
Paxo did get around to the welcoming speech, & around 25 past the Hare got to explain what the Pack could expect to encounter on the Trail. There was mention of a short cut, if the SCBs stuck with him, to be aware of horses, dogs, the eggs the dogs left behind, a Held CHK, Food Stop before he added bits about low flying aircraft, golf balls & other nonsense!
While Paxo & Pebbledash went to reception, the rest got the Trail started out of the Henlow Lakes entrance & took a left on the footpath that runs along the western edge of the site. Louis couldn't wait to have a poop & much to Lobby Lobster & Mark E Mark's frustration he started going while running along!
A CHK was discovered at the end of the path, where it joins the one from Arlesey Station, where Colin & Alfa Male were amongst the FRBs who had gone the wrong way to pass under the Flyover & toward the Station.
Pepé le Pew was among the few standing in the CHK, saying the rest had gone wrong, which pleased the Hare as he marked the CHK up to the north. The Hash were now going to find out how big the Henlow Lakes area is as the Trail would take to the Path which almost circumnavigates the park.
It was quite humid & dry to start with, the shelter of the trees & bushes stopped any cooling breeze. Behind the hedges to the left was an area where a huge plastic dinosaur was & Colin's tent nearby, his temporary abode with it flooded end that he told the Pack about. Bloody show off everyone is rich enough for their own pool in a tent!
Plenty if fisher folk were seen in the many pegs by the lakeside, on the other side was the River Ivel. The Trail turned from north bound to westward for a short way, then arced southward again before hitting a southwest path. Whatever She Says stopped to ask the Hare if the Trail turned to the right, it did as the Dust finally headed away from the lakes.
Having run about three quarters of the way around the park before
it reached the Track leading up from on the Arlesey Road to Henlow Grange & head
up to pass by the front of the
Fat Farm Champneys Henlow Grange, the next
CHK was found outside of the drive way into the wrought iron gates.
The Hare was happy to see Tim & Colin were heading down Coach Road, toward Park Lane in Henlow where the Pub Crawl Trail went, so there would be no Dust that way as to avoid any confusion.
The likes of Max Factor & Whatever She Says all moved on from the CHK when the Hare pointed the way northward on the drive as it passed behind the grounds of a local school. The Hare was glad to see that No Eye Dear had continued on beyond the track off to the east, she had found the Bar CHK straight on.
The Trail now headed eastward toward Poppy Hall Farm. Having crossed the low brick bridge over the river Ivel the track led on to a split in its path before reaching the farm house, there an arrow pointed up the left fork.
The dusty track now took the Hash northwestward, Tim & Colin continued along the dry open route as it turned to the north, again the Hare was delighted as the two up front had passed by the intended route & were on their way up to a Bar CHK.
Those behind the ones returning from the Bar CHK now took advantage of this & searched off on the 'New Path' that disappeared in to the cordoned off area of nature reserve, these ponds reed beds were home to a variety of wildlife.
Mr X told Jaron that he had seen Dragonflies & Damselflies as he passed through to set the Trail, there were even a host of little birds flitting about through the Bull-rushes & reed beds.
The Trail crossed various streams again on one of the wooden bridges in the reserve, then it came out over the Ivel & in to the edge of a meadow, with a zig-zag ramp. No Eye Deer spotted & pointed out the large carving of a Kingfisher about to dive in to the river from the south side of the bridge. Again Tim & Colin were heading in the wrong direction as they headed away from the CHK by the bridge to look westward toward the top of the village of Clifton.
There was only one other way to go & that was northward over the meadow, with a large clump of trees in the center blocking the views of the northern exit from the meadow, the FRBs were split either side of this copse & once on the other side No Eye Deer joined the rest as they headed toward the next wood carving, this one being a totem like Owl upon an Otter but some at first thought it was a Badger? Could have been worse as with Pebbledash on Trail there would have been uproar at the mention of it being a Beaver!
Over the wooden steps & up in to a series of farm fields, drier land from the lower meadows & this could be felt to be harder underfoot. This was Kingfisher Farm land & at the gap through the hedgerow in to the next field to the north a CHK was found.
The Hare waited for the Dust to be picked up, Alfa Male set off westward on the permissive 'dog walkers' route along the hedgerow to Langford, there was no Dust that way, Colin said “Whoever that is up there, it’ll be the ‘kiss of death’ as I am going that way as well!” which was all very prophetic as soon they were called back as the Trail progressed northward up toward the stables in the distance, once in this field the FRBs could bear witness to Paul over up at the dividing hedgerow frightening whatever lives within!
At the Stables the Trail took a kink in its path, passing through the tip of north-eastern corner & out in to the southwestern of a fallow field, this was rougher ground & after a 90° turn the Hash were northbound again, all the way to the Langford road, by the Garden Centre. No Eye Deer & Colin briefly went off on their own to a gap at one side of the official route out through the roadside hedgerow.
Once over the Langford Road a CHK was found but no one was fooled into heading westward, instead the Keenies all chose the opposite direction & were soon On Trail, even more fortunate for them was the fact none were lured over the Ivel & on to the Bar CHK in the southern end of Langford.
Instead, the wise Keenies took the footpath running northward along the west bank of the Ivel, a scenic trot now ensued, with various sections of common, meadow & Farm land of Waterend to the west, on the eastern bank were lots of nice looking homes, some with their own boats up on the shored up bankside.
For Whatever She Says a trip down 'memory lane' was coming up for he was born in Langford, as were his Grand Parents. That said, there were a lot of new builds that weren't there when he resided in this part of Beds.
The Pack found the next CHK at another of the mills on the Ivel, for a short 21 mile river it had quite a few mills along its course. Anyhow, a few, like Sloppy Seconds went wrong by going in to the new reserve of the common, while no one was really interested with carrying straight on toward the next Mill, Sludge had been over the single, narrow footbridge over the Ivel & in to Langford, but was soon sent back when the Hare marked the CHK that way!
A bit of street running through the village saw quite a few stopping off at the local convenience store to get a drink, for the weather was still really humid. The Hare was feeling it on his second trip around & was spotted drinking a bottle of fizzy Scottish water!
The Hare shouted to those continuing along through the village to hold the next CHK, which was found by St Andrews Church. It seems that the Hare's dehydration made him forget that the only a few hundred yards further on was the true Held CHK.
The Hash passed by the Wrestlers, well what was the Wrestlers as it is now shut & has a banner proclaiming it will soon be opening as Langford's Tandoori restaurant. Whatever She Says said "That only leaves the Plough!" In a melancholy way! [This could be the future if you wish for alcoholic free Hash Trails! What a nightmare! - Ed]
The Pack were now fairly well strung out, with Lobby Lobster, Mark E Mark & Louie keeping TBT OBE, Skip & Psycho company at the back end, by the time the main body of the Hash made it to the Held CHK, here the Hare handed out Haribo sweets [Other confectionaries are available! - Ed] but the back markers would miss out.
It was also here that the Trail split, with the long option crossing the road to head down a footpath off behind East Road & then Queensway to the farm fields north of Langford, however, it was not the only split at this point as Pepé le Pew needed to pay a visit to the Plough the Hash had just passed by, he was joined by My Lil', TBT OBE, Skip, Psycho etc.
Whatever She Says questioned the Hare as to where the Trail would go, he was spot on when he said "Does it head out to the railway cross over & then come back to the Biggleswade Road via Sheepwalk?"
Just to make sure the rest if the Keenies were 'safety conscious, Mr X warned the Keenies that they would twice cross the main line tracks, all four lines needed care with the express ones having Trains travelling along at over 100 mph! He didn't want to see any Hertfordshire Hedgehogs flattened in Beds!
So, Colin, Tim, Sludge, No Eye Deer, Alfa Male were among those intrepid FRBs who did the loop over the railway to the east & back, meanwhile Mr X, who was three quarters of the way on his second time around was going to mark the Short Cut & take that shorter route.
What Ever She Says also joined Mr X, & not too far behind them was Max Factor, as the second Convenience Store in Langford was shut & she couldn't get any refreshment. The short cut passed by Biggleswade Rugby Club & the Long Trail rejoined just by this as Sheepwalk came in from the east & up to the Biggleswade road.
Some could have been mistaken for this being a Healthy Hash Run,
with a Run by the
Fat Farm Champneys Health Resort, as a little way up
from Sheepwalk the Trail turned off on the Holme Road to the west, a short way
down this are the grounds of Jordans' Mills, home to the famous porridge oats &
The Trail ran on the footpath by Jordan’s' visitors car park & again Whatever She Says was surprised how things have changed, for opposite the Mill entrance used to be a rundown cottage, which has now been a very plush looking mini-mansion. The Trail came out on to the road bridge, to cross over the Ivel with its series of locks & weirs, the old bridge is right on a sharp bend in the lane & after a turn to the north the new modern mill could be seen.
Whatever She Says seemed to be on his quest for an alcohol free Hash, inviting those with him to go to the Jordans' Cafe for a Coffee! He was in his own for that & he soon gave up on that idea as the rain began to come down.
The Trail crossed one of the arms of the Ivel, for here it is splits to provide feeders for the mill when it was water powered. The last leg of the Trail, as Sloppy Seconds correctly pointed out the distinctive green footpath sign which indicated it was a mile & a quarter to Biggleswade. The path along by the Ivel is now complimented by a new gravel cycle way on the west side of the hedgerow, which was far easier to run on but not as scenic as the waterway option.
The Ivel, in parts, looks like it could do with some help as large reed beds are silting bits up on the way in to Biggleswade. After a long straight he Trail came up to a CHK near the bridge for the Biggleswade by-pass, but there was no time for shelter beneath this for the Hare or Whatever She Says as they carried on into the Park of Franklin Recreation ground, the walled edge to the river was the first sign of the site for the Food Stop, but with the rain still falling it was first decided to bring the picnic site to under the canopy of the Horse Chesnutt Trees, & not in the smaller area of shallows by the river.
Mr X went off to get the Clangers from Gunns Bakery, [No they are not wooly knitted puppets! – Ed] but then had to go to the hole in the wall machine for some readies, as they don't take cards. Dosh in hand, & after a quick stop for some softies from Poundland, he received a large cardboard tray of warm Clangers, just brought in from the Gunns’ Sandy Bakery. The only snag was what were the various flavours?
The Steak was easy to guess, as there were more of them, but the others only the two veggie curry ones could be distinguished. The next issue was getting the tray back down Mill lane & over to the large Willow beside the Ivel, it was now a slight ordeal as the wind had picked up, it was like watching 'The Plank'!
The rain had ceased & so the food stop was brought back to its original spot under the willow tree. The Hare, unlike what Whatever She Says did to No Eye Deer one time, explained that the end of the pastry Clanger with the scores is the sweet end of the snack, for Clangers are like proper pasties, the Bedfordshire equivalent, with a meat & veg main at one end & a sweet at the other.
The Pack arrived in small groups to be fed, it seems not only their running/walking pace but their drinking pace also effected when they reached the end of the Trail! Sloppy Seconds & Tim had to purchase their own Clangers, for they didn't let the organisers know that they were turning out this morning.
Anyhow, a little more precipitation began to fall, the ringlets expanding on the surface of wide shallow area in the Ivel were an indicator of this. This sight made some question what happened to the "River Crossings" the Hare mentioned in his pre-run talk, this was a Red Herring like the golf balls. But not the low flying aircraft!
No Eye Deer was impressed, that after looking at her mileage covered, 7 Miles on the Full Trail, that Mr X had managed to get around again in one day - clocking up over 14 with setting the Falsies as well.
Having eaten, the early arrivals headed off to the Golden Pheasant, a short walk around by Gunns Bakery & on passing Mr X thanked the girls in the shop, saying that the Clangers were delicious, then it was to follow the arrows around the back of Biggleswade Market Place & up the High Street.
Arriving at the Golden Pheasant Mr X was to find one corner of the Bar taken up by the Hash. The Golden Pheasant is now an 'Ale House' - though owned by Charlie Wells Pub, there is a good selection of guest Ales & a couple of Ciders!
Max Factor was first to try the Lillies' Mango Cider, well, what a nice drink. In fact too easy to drink, it tasted just like mango juice, even Pepé le Pew enjoyed his sip of Pebbledash's one, considering he isn’t a fan of mango which earlier saw him fingered it out of Pebbledash’s Clanger. [Calm down Pebbledash! – Ed]
Mr X went for the Chocolate Stout, which has real chocolate in it, you could certainly taste it, then a Mango Cider which complemented it quite well. The Mango Cider was pretty popular, most had one as it was rather refreshing.
Tim said that he liked the Clanger stop, adding that he often tells people about trying Clangers, so it was nice for him to eat one. Colin decided that he would read out the quiz section of the paper, which resulted in himself, Tim & Mr X not doing too bad. A quiz night must be arranged!
Outside in the Pub's rear patio garden the locals were trying to erect a gazebo, cue about erections & Pebbledash! The Hash enjoyed looking on as one local sat there on the bench-table while the test spent ages in getting the canopy up around him, he didn't budge or stop drinking as poles & canopies were moved around him!
The Pack moved out in to the courtyard garden to find that the rain had all but ceased by the time Ewok called the Circle to order. Mr X was called forward to receive his reward for a Trail that the Pack enjoyed, even the rain in the final leg couldn't spoil things! After Mr X had dispatched his Down-Down it was normal service resumed.
Among those out for a Hit were Whatever She Says for his nostalgia trip along the Trail Mark E Mark & Lobby for Louie & his long running pooping at the start of the Trail.
Tim was also out with Whatever She Says for being a Bedford Boy, the toast was to the Clangers! There were plenty of other Hits & with a few new songs being sung, though No Eye Deer was shocked at the lyrics of one the RA sung!
TBT OBE was out for being the only Structural Engineer there & he didn't assist the locals in getting their erection up out the back! [Steady there Pebbledash! - Ed]
Colin was out for his naming, taking his position on his knees as the Pack voted 'Where's Wally' in preference of the other suggestions from the Floor! The usual Shiggy, Flour & Ale was donned upon his head before he dispatched his Down-Down.
The Pack were then reminded that Jaron was well overdue for a Hash Handle, Mark E Mark's suggestion of "Here's a packet of crisps, go sit on the garden son!" received a lot of laughs, also a lot to ponder on!
After the Circle there was time for a quick pint, then Pack would now split in to two groups with the majority going back on the train to freshen up, Tim & Sloppy Seconds didn’t have tickets, but the RA gave them tow of the pre-order Groups save Tickets. Unfortunately, just like the write up for the EHMR Run, he’s still waiting for his ticket money back from Sloppy Seconds!
A smaller group went for an extra Ale at the New Inn. Mark E Mark, Lobby Lobster, Mr X, My Lil' & Ketchup all had to sit outside at a table in the passageway, where Jaron was with his crisps, as the manager said that dogs were not allowed in the Bar!
Louie wasn't too upset by this, for he would soon get a pig's ear [no not the rhyming slang for a beer! - Ed] as there is a Pet Shop opposite the Pub, Mark E Mark said Louie should be sent in on his own to get what he wants, but common sense prevailed & Lobby & Ketchup went in with Jaron.
There was some ribbing of Ketchup, as it seems that he has developed a soft spot for pooches, will the Ketchup household soon be hearing the patter of furry paws? Not to be left out, the non-canines were treated to other porcine products, these being Pork Scratchings.
Time to get the train back, having alighted at Arlesey, Mr X found the climb up the steps for the bridge over the railway lines was not as hard, or painful as the previous time he did this after setting the Trail.
Back at base & while awaiting the time to get off to the Greyhound track, there was more Polish Honey Vodka to get through. The Rain started to come down again, so Alfa Male orders Taxis, well one taxi that did a repeat trip the couple of miles to the Transporter Micro Bar, just a short walk from the Greyhound Stadium.
Ales straight out of the barrel, not a bad selection, & for the GM, who had now joined the Hash a nice selection of ciders. Flanders had also come along as she too was up for a flutter at the dogs.
The short walk over to the Greyhound Stadium was a blast from the past for Mr X, as he spent many a time there as a kid when his parents used to race greyhounds there. Well, it hasn't really changed that much, with the exception of the large marquee that sits on the left of the finish line. It did seem a lot smaller than back in the 1970 & 1980's.
Utilizing the Party 10 option, the Pack shanghaied a table in the bar, the process of getting a drink & then laying a bet began. It soon became clear that the odds would not be great, many of the races were reduced from the usual six dogs in a race to three! Ewok was happy with the small tote window in the corner of the Bar at Henlow, as unlike the ones at Newmarket as she could see over the counter!
Never the less, there were a couple of winners reaching the heady heights of £11.20, the biggest win was probably Max Factor & Alfa Male with their Trio Bet! The evening went quickly & soon it was time to get a Taxi to return to site, there was a nightcap of either the Honey Vodka or Port, or both if greedy!
Where's Wally Brought some more Stella, as the fire pit was lit outside Woodpecker Lodge & the evening became the early hours, though the smoke was a little overpowering.
For some in the Swallow Lodge would be treated to a scene that could have been from Southpark's cartoon series within, of Terrance & Philip! Luckily it was warm enough for the windows to be left open & let the methane out to replenish the ozone layer, the hole in which had been shrinking up to that point!
Mr X cooked the last of the bacon for breakfast in Woodpecker, whole My Lil' set off to set the Sunday Recovery Trail, which he got around quicker than expected. Jaron was up & about & decided to name his knitted Monkey ‘Colin Monkey’ so we now have two of these on Herts Hash, well one is wooly-head, floppy & limp wristed, the other is a toy & more reliable at turning up.
Bacon Sarnied up, TBT OBE packed up & set off before the Run, he was off to watch the Seniors Golf at Woburn, but in his haste he left his cap & sleeping bag case behind! Then in Woodpecker, Jaron was fascinated by the geese that decided to pay a visit the Lodge patio, encouraged by Ketchup, he fed them a few little bits of bread. This was fine until lured by the bread, they were emboldened enough to come right through the open French windows & in the front room, as it is with some animals as soon as food goes in it comes out! One of the geese shat on the floor!
The Hash circled up for the final time this weekend, those who had survived scrubbed up fairly well, considering the previous night! The GM called the Pack together, then the Hare stepped forward to hive his spiel, which was really short. The mention of short cuts was picked up on, but not as much as the bit about it being a short Trail.
The Pack set off out of the main entrance & then turned right on the access road down to Arlesey Station & a fresh CHK was found not far from the previous day's one. Dust was found under the fly-over & while Max Factor, Where's Wally & Alfa Male looked up the exit road & out to the main road, only to find a T!
Mr X was out over to the gate on the common, but came back when the Falsie was wrongly called as "On!", he would go back to down Old Oak Lane & then once over the famous old pack-bridge of Arlesey Bridge, right before the railway station, he turned southward to find the Dust a little further beyond the gate he was almost at earlier, there he entered Glebe Meadow Reserve.
Ewok, Alfa Male, Max Factor & Where's Wally were soon back up with Mr X on the way toward the wood on the meadow. They soon got ahead of him as he went wrong in the meadow.
Into the wood & the Trail started off on the path along by the Railway line, a CHK soon had Mr X going wrong as he continued on this path, while Alfa Male & Where's Wally turned westward before finding the path by the Ivel leading southward around the ‘Old Moat’ as the reserve becomes Arlesey Old Moat Reserve, most of the former defense is hidden by the wild undergrowth these days.
Mr X bumped in to a group out walking, confusingly they had a spaniel that looked like the spitting image of Louie!
Jaron was up with the FRBs, while Ketchup was further back on the Hash, as the Trail crossed a couple of short planks that acted as a bridge over the ditches that are tributaries to the nearby Ivel to the west, Ewok & Max Factor kept an eye on Jaron
The Dust led out of the wood & the Keenies now had a slight loop of a run by the curving route of the Ivel behind the tree-line. The SCBs were led along the path by the railway line. A CHK was found on the wide bridge for farm vehicles, Mr X thought the Trail would head eastward toward the bridge leading out of the meadow & over the Railway in to Arlesey, but Where's Wally & Alfa Male had found the Trail in the fields to the west of the Ivel.
The Trail headed over the wider flat bridge over the weir, to run over to the west & once on the cinder Track it turned northward up a farm track that forms a bridle way, having turned on this Mr X was surprised to another group of walkers & they too had a Louie lookalike! Was it National Spaniel walking day?
By now Where's Wally & Alfa Male were so far ahead of the rest, but the Hare's cunning would take them off to the west on a long trot off of the main northerly track, this would end in a Bar CHK!
Mr X benefitted the most as he was just far enough behind them not to be lured around the bend after them!
The w stuck with the main cinder track up by Cityfield farm to come out on to the Arelsey Road, where the On Inn was found, a short trot around the access road led back under the flyover & in to the site.
A Circle was called outside of Woodpecker Lodge, while the Pack enjoyed the cheeses & biscuits Psycho & Skip brought over, Mr X got out the remaining cheddars, Chili Chocolate & chili cashews.
Down-Downs were of a watered down Vodka. The Hare was rewarded for his Trail of 40 minutes, the weekend’s organizers for getting everything together. Ketchup was out for his Dr Doolittle exploits with the goose crapping in the Lodge!
Jaron was due for his Christening, bit all of a sudden came over all shy & wasn't prepared to kneel in the circle, so Ketchup had to take his sons place, as the name Prince Garmin [Cue Adam & the Ants ‘Prince Charming’! – Ed] was bestowed on Jaron. Ketchup took it well as he received the Sacred Shiggy, Holy Dust & All Hail the Ale!
After the Circle the Hash would shower & then a brave few headed back to the Engineer’s Arms, to catch the Grand Prix, enjoy more Real Ale & Cider before Price Garmin got out the Jenga! Meanwhile Pepé le Pew, Pebbledash, Paxo & Ewok played Uno, & after he got fed up with the Jenga, Prince Garmin went & got another deck of Uno cards so there were two games on two tables.
This would later become a large a game with Lobby Lobster, Mark E Mark, Mr X, My Lil’ & Ketchup all joined the others. Things start off a bit weird as the two groups had been playing to slightly different rules, so a compromise was reached & the afternoon was whiled away playing games until the Football started!
Finally the day had become afternoon, the Footie was bland to say the least & it was time to move on. A great weekend was had by all & the venue may be worth a look at again for another event?