Sheep Shagger made his solo haring debut a fair way down Canal Rd, writes Alice, and in the area close to the Frozen Dick house apparently.
The pack was small but raring to go and the brief told us we were on sheep related paper, a nice touch. The hare was pretty sure it was about 5 km and there were FTs marked with sheep in red NO signs. When asked about check backs from Vs it became clear there weren’t any Vs just circles.
Away we went on the start of a tight course that tried to wiggle a runnable route out of a narrow grid of tracks and orchards. It was promising to be a literally close run thing. How would the hare control the pack?
I struggled to get past Tiptoe then Rooter stepped across me.
The first check was hidden behind a tree although when you stopped and turned round because there was no paper visible either side of the t junction, you saw the check. I went right to check-wrong! The breadcrumb paper was rather thin, tiny strips that someone tore into thinner tinier strips that some runners had trouble seeing.
On on was called left and into an orchard or two, another check and through a wide barbed wire fence unmarked onto more paper and then a check that led to our undoing.
The pack spread and a clear On On from FRB Graven on a track the other end of the orchard. I caught up and we saw paper on both sides of the barbed wire fence. Portent of gloom or a masterful debut?
He and others tried finding ingress to the overgrown field while Graven, as senior hasher, sent me down the clear path on paper to find the False Trail, he reliably informed me was down there.
On and on I jogged, obviously too far for a falsie and so it was. Into another orchard and out with a flash of songthao red through the trees. Uh oh. 10 minutes in and I was back at the A. Sheep Shagger’s face was a picture! The FRBs converged behind me and it was time to take stock.
Graven re-ran the out trail while I jogged backwards with the hare to show him where we’d hit the in trail. I think he was so focussed on the out trail and making that well marked but tricky at checks, he’d missed the proximity of the in trail. A new hare common gaff.
No matter, we set off again, the Kwazi checking like a good un and running down trails. Suddenly we see the rest of the pack, ABB, Strangely, Pig, Pussy Whisperer, Square Rooter etc. They were standing around and debating. Didn’t look promising. They were confused, trail was confused and what we did know was that paper was both ways fairly close by.
Paper was found in a field but going backwards, then down a clear path and then 3 pieces hidden after a long gap which suggested a circle somewhere but also that we were in reverse again. Despite good will, head nor tail was really made of things so groups made their own ways home trying to follow the in or the out backwards to try to ascertain where we went wrong.
Calls weren’t always heard clearly or perhaps made and tempers got a bit hot here and there. Hash is a game, should be fun and there’s only 3 main moving calls. ‘On on’ for on trail. ‘Checking’ when searching from a check. ‘Looking’ when suddenly off paper and trying to get back on. If the pack call clearly and often, we’ll eat the trail and not irritate each other. End of vent!
Back at the A, Sheep Shagger was trying to come to terms with everyone’s advice. The circle was low key as folk relaxed. Luckily the terrain was flat and we got mixed up close enough to the A both times so no-one really stressed or panicked. A few gently funny tales of the Udon outstation were told and enjoyed by your scribe Alice.
Strava routes were revealing. They all looked like a figure of 8 overlaid on a loop of another 8. Pack ran between about 3.5 and 5.2 km I think in about 45 mins.
On on on was in Bier Stube with unfortunately smoking patrons in our vicinity. Lucky Chuck Wao went home to recuperate.