Date = 16th October 2016
Run Number = 1701
Venue = The Cross Keys
Beer = Timothy Taylor Landlord, Rebellion IPA
Hares = Tent Packer
Runners = 11
Virgins = 0
Visitors = 0
Newies = 0
Apres = 1
Hounds = 0
Total = 12
Membership = Some getting ahead of themselves!
The prospect of foul weather may have put a few off of venturing out, others were away on the Herts Hackers Golf weekend, all of which would seem fairly ironic later on.
Mr X & My Lil' had text the Hare to say that due to having the UK's worst rail service, they would be a couple of minutes late in arriving, all in hope that the Pack would hang around long enough for them to stow their bags.
Having alighted from the train, the two walked around to the High Street, just as they approached the Cross Keys they were met by the sight of the Pack running toward them, seems that the Circle was short & sweet.
With no vehicles available to leave their jackets & bags, the RA & Beer Master ended up hiding their gear in the outside smoking room at the back of the Pub, departing in the hope that the regulars in the Cross Keys were of an honest disposition?
Tent Packer waited for these two to come back out on to the High Street, the trio then set off southward in pursuit of the rest, which seemed to be a simple premise, which in reality wouldn't occur. As they set off the Hare mentioned that there were some ‘magic mushrooms’ out on the Trail, not that Mr X or My Lil’ were tempted to pick any.
Getting by & avoiding the shoppers & God Botherers milling about on the side road of the High Street, the faint remains of a CHK was discovered at the junction where this side street part of the High Street ends at the junction where it stops on Station Road, something which Mr X & My Lil' failed to see on their way from the Train Station.
Mr X was soon over the road & off down the alleyway between the end of the row of shops & the isolated Harpenden Arms Pub. Dust was found leading further southward up to Southdown Road but he then went to far as he failed to see the double arrows pointing over the bend in Southdown Road from the St Albans Road to the green space of the Common.
By now the dark overcast clouds were closing in, looking up the Common there was no sight or sound of the rest of the Hash. The trail would pass by the cricket pitch & then the soccer pitch were a few kids were out being coached at footie training.
The Dust would then head in to the wooded area along a part of the course of the stream, Tent Packer now had to call to the two ahead of him as they missed this drop down to the small mature reserve. They cut through between the trees & came out to the CHK by the small wooden footbridge over the gushing brook, a sign of the heavy overnight rain that happen in these parts.
The Trail emerged from the wood to the open common, the RA believed that up ahead in the distance he could see Paxo coming back down Saint Johns Road & into St John’s Wood as if he was on a Falsie. By the time the three had made it up to Walker’s Road there was no sign of Paxo, or anyone else who resembled a Hasher, just a few dog walkers & their pooches.
Once over Walker’s Road the Dust led up in to the wood by way of the wide marked horse riding route to a CHK where an east-west path crosses the north-south one in the wood.
It was here that the weather turned, & it wasn't for the better. But instead of sheltering beneath the broadleaf tree canopy the three ploughed on, taking a left turn to the east & then southeastward to come out of the wood at the corner of the soccer pitches where an adult match was under way. Still there was no sign of the rest of the Hash.
Later on it was thought that the Hare & the other two were actually ahead of the rest, who were sheltering from the in St John’s wood. Away from the southeast corner of the Football pitch & on to a CHK point on Cravell’s Road, it didn’t take too much effort to discover the Trail continued on to the Golf Course on east common, not that there were that many golfers out this morning.
The tempest began to blow over as the Trio headed southeastward along the side of the fairway, a kink in its route led around the contour of the holly & other green shrubs in the tree line along beside Limbrick Lane to the east. There were a few dog walkers taking advantage of the lack of Golfers out on the fairways & were seen wandering away from the marked route, the Hash however stuck with the white post marked way.
A CHK was found on Limbrick Road, it was here that the Trail finally stopped its southerly way. The Dust was discovered along the narrow Limbrick lane as it heads over to the St Albans Road in the west, the journey was temporarily halted to allow a couple of golfers to get there seconds shots off, then it was over to the other marked way on the west side of the common. Now the Three were heading down the west side of the common, hardly stopping on the way back over the narrow lanes they had crossed on their way over the east side.
Looking back it was now obvious that the rest hadn’t run so far ahead that they couldn’t be caught, it was that they were now behind the ‘breakaway three’. The lack of CHKs being marked should have been an indicator, but since most of these had been battered by the downpour it was a little less noticeable, also the breakaway three should have seen or heard the others if they had run down this way whilst they were on the opposite side.
It was along the west side of the golf course that the ‘magic mushrooms’ were spotted – these distinctive red & white spotted mushrooms are familiar from childhood books & the type of things gnomes sit upon, Amanita muscaria, commonly known as the fly agaric or fly amanita, is a psychoactive basidiomycete fungus, used in Siberia as such, they are also used in some religious ceremonies – none of which would happen with the RA in the final Circle at the end of the Hash!
When the Trail came back over Walker’s Road the Pack had seen more Golf Course than the Hackers who were away! Mr X had to be called back from heading back over the last section of the common, near to the cricket pitch & kid’s soccer, on the footpath beside the St Albans Road the faint Trail & the Short Cut markings could be seen. Still believing that they were behind the rest, & with My Lil’ having left his wallet in his jacket which was back at the Pub, these two elected to take the short cut.
So, while Mr X & My Lil’ followed on behind the sporty red-head out jogging along, they headed down the roads edge back in to Harpenden town centre, the likes of Sparky, Mother, Lemming, No Eye Deer, Max Factor, Alfa Male & Paxo all crossed over the St Albans Road to take to a route over the west side of Harpenden, which would lead them around on to the Rothampstead Research Site via the Hatching Green part of town.
Things still weren’t going to plan with this Trail, as somewhere along the line Mother, Lemming & Sparky disappeared from the rest, to where they had gone to nobody knows. The Hare did pick some of the others up the others & he, like Paxo took a photo of the end of the Trail, which was to pass through the still standing scaffolding structure of the finish line for the Harpenden 10 K the week before, so of course some had to have their photo taken passing through this.
Meanwhile Mr X & My Lil’ passed opposite the Sliver Cup, a Pub that Herts have run from many times before, when Shambler used to Hash with us. Mr X said that Shambler probably had his wedding reception & honeymoon there! My Lil’ said that his wake & ashes will probably scattered there!
Mr X & My Lil’ were back at base, getting to their gear before the first drinker to be served came in to the smoking shelter to have a drag on his cigarette. They met up with Mrs Mallet, who then promptly disappeared down the shops after leaving Tent Packers Bag under the bench seat in the small side bar.
The Hare arrived & enquired as to the whereabouts of Mother & Lemming, then he recalled that Sparky was missing too! Mr X said that he had only seen Mrs Mallet & the Hare’s change of kit bag! Everyone made it back, though it took then a while to get changed in to dry clothes, with the exception of Sparky who as per usual takes eons to get himself sorted out!
The Hare had arrange for some food, he was celebrating a Birthday this week, so the Landlady had prepared a very tasty Chili! Sparky had finished his faffing around to be the last to enjoy the chili. Then Rustler arrived, just in time to see Herts at the finest, after their second pint.
Lemming was on form & there seemed to be a running theme when it came to areas to live, with ‘Arlow being mentioned several times at the expense of Max Factor & Alfa Male! Some headway was made on the Christmas Weekend, with a deadline of Thursday being made the cut-off mark to get enough numbers of ‘Herts Only’ for it to take place, sadly it looks like we will not have enough Herts to make this viable.
The Circle was called outside, by now the weather was sunny, as the RA had promised out on Trail when it was lashing down with rain. The Hare was awarded his Down-Down for bravely setting the Trail twice in what at one point was torrential rain.
Sparky & Lemming were out for one being a technophobe & the other trying to stitch the RA up to sort out Sparky’s Files on his laptop & transferring them from his camera! Paxo got the Hashit, after the RA (Who’s stand in of Sloppy Seconds had awarded it to Paxo the week before) Paxo admitted he got it for “Turning up!” so he was awarded it again for “Turning up!”
Then it was back to the Pub for more puerile talk as George’s name was raised [As long as that was all that was raised with George! – Ed], the RA was just grateful that Pebbledash wasn’t there!