Run 708, June 12th 2019.
WHERE: The Druids Arms, Stanton Drew.
HARES: Cinders and Kerb Crawler.
WHO: 35 hashers, 5 hounds and 1 visitor.
RUN REPORT: This inevitably quantitative and qualitative K&A/Bogs hybrid turned into a major washout...unless you were flour, in which case a stoic defiance of the markings against this June deluge predominated the trail. We frequently neglect Sandy Lane both for On Out and On In but not this evening - perhaps it was the presence of a Tithe Barn and a field of cattle doing the herding that tempted us. Or maybe the pack were so keen to make a tardy scribe plus Ropey and Fondue trail in their wake that they quickly sought the open, very tall grass? Whatever the cause, Croucher remained on hand to maintain the link between the BRBs and the dim and distant, and the cattle seemed well accustomed to a pack running through them without a Rebore-in-Red, so much so that they failed to sniff out the many bovinophobes on offer. Also stinking the trail out for the wrong reasons was the normally wary hound Mudlark who had gone for a roll in something not even recommended among the canine elite - prior to finally colliding with the runners who had been seen scaling distant heights (particularly Cinderella in his beacon orange), the weather nearly opted to ease off to turn Mudlark into some repugnant street art, but it did have a heart and duly opened half a heaven once we reached the sweet stop en masse. Not content with a view of a coombe or two, there was ample dried fruit on offer along with non-tangy pastilles, complete with the universal resumption of "Check It Out"! Despite assertions to either side, Bendy (and of course Poppy, with Sweet FA encouragement) saw fit to sprint ahead in search of flour while the rest briefly parted their separate ways. By now we had noticed the prevalence of R/L as opposed to R/W splits, so as to emphasise how long runner routes can be and how much shorter a walker/wimp route is - no such hard luck in finding a way back through several stiles and shiggified farmland to the tarmac preceding a pretty regular On In/Out unlike that Sandy Lane. Here we have grown accustomed to negotiating the electric fences only to be confronted by less respectful cattle than the rest of the trail (in Rebore's absence Fondue stepped up to the plate and simply uttered "Hey!" a couple of times to disperse We The Curious Cows - no need for concern from them, after all they were not even destined to be on the menu...
CIRCLE: Suited and de-booted for a crowded pub, we had to applaud Fondue and Mudlark for their helping hand from nature in cleaning up, though we may have gone too far in suggesting Houdini had not come dressed for British Summer (there are technically 9 days or 1.5 hashes still to go, for those like me who only speak Solstice).
ON ON ON: Butcombe Beer either made you hastily disappear or stay to drink the bar dry, the former missing out on the duo of chip trays that came out with enough sausages for 3 per omnivore; you even had enough resources to make them swim in ketchup and mayo. Dongle and Software's residence par excellence beckons next week - you have my testimony that haute cuisine will reign supreme.
Run 707, June 5th 2019.
WHERE: Morrisons Car Park, Weston-Super-Mare, later upgrading to Fondue's stately abode.
HARES: Fondue and Bendy.
WHO: 17 hashers and 2 hounds.
RUN REPORT: Good old Morrisons with their 2 hours of free parking - particularly if you pop in to stock up on drinks for complimenting your hare hostess. While teetering a few times between Milton and Locking Castle the FRBs played hard to get a few times, though one meeting was perfectly timed and ended up with the walkers doing more than their share of the checking and On Backs. Being asked to drop and give me twenty circuits clearly brought about their enthusiasm for a sweet stop in amongst the statue symbols of Plumley Park, with the healthier option of dried fruit every bit as keen to appear in a group photo as the hashers who wouldn't keep tranquil long enough to be counted. I remember how this enormous Castle-come-Estate appeared almost overnight back at the turn of the millennium and has never been easy to find a way out of on any number of wheels; thankfully we were not only on several pairs of stumpy legs but also had a runway with Roman straightforwardness to it pointing us to one of Weston's blooming cycle paths. Once mounted, it was an easy 8:30 retrace to where the hares no longer felt we could go wrong, ready to distribute maps to those naturally lured to the lower reaches of West Wick by the concept of far-from-cheesy Fondue cooking...
CIRCLE & ON ON ON: Make that a simple polygon praising the hare for the late recruit of a compatriot to maintain disorderly proceedings while she returnd On Outward to finish the culinary prep. Pavlova retained its title of Fondue's piece de resistance, though partly though stoic resistance against the rivalry of her even Garfield-satisfying veggie and standard lasagne with garlic bread better than supermarket made. Blue enough above too for us to eat it all up out on the patio in preparation for the hike further afield and inland with the K&As next week. Here's to a vain attempt to convert them onto fish hooks, turnbacks, R/Ws et al...
RUN 705, May 22nd 2019.
WHERE: The Village Hall turned Tannery Bar, Claverham.
HARES: Kerb Crawler and Cinderella.
WHO: 16 minus 1 plus 1 plus 2 hashers and 2 hounds.
RUN REPORT: Probable virgin location inspired a lot of virgin territory for us to bedeck a third of this trail with, and it was all soaked up by an up and plodding Coppertone who made it cross country to the A370 before turning back in an On In manner. Quite an understandable reaction for the convalescent, given that by this stage we had already needed to contend with a trio of electric fences and a herding by horned cattle made that little bit trickier by the fact that we had no Rebore-in-Red among our posse. All ways seemed as good as any by the time we were called on to monitor traffic again, but "thankfully" it was only brief as our emergence alongside Littlewood Lane preceded a very steep hill up into Bigwood. FRBs both walking and running had no need to feel guilty about finishing off their sweet stop wine gums as gelatins of a similar vein were already being shared with the BWBs by Kerb Crawler, though once we restarted before lactic acid could some concern emerged when the co-hares were overheard muttering "may not see you again". There was indeed some cause for bewilderment, though I sit here still in wonder as to whether it was some divine intervention that got the walkers ahead of the runners or (far more likely) that my sense of runners' direction had been dulled by the many checkpoints (and a dozing caravan) on the runners' trail. Whatever the motive, we emerged on the evergreen trail around Goblin Combe with the walkers having cut the swathe through foliage to end up on very much the wrong side (thankfully not the wrong end) of barbed wire. It quickly bowed its head to give us a choice of oxygen rich trails; the one for choice has previously featured Scoutz In The Wood but not tonight - perhaps they had been warned about an even more dangerous creature than their usual repertoire that marks its territory with flour and yells "On On!" in banshee style. Daylight and even sunshine were still in abundance as we navigated sheepishly through the outskirts of Cleeve, spotting a pair of R/W splits outside the ex-Lord Nelson which may yet host future hashes in another guise. To count Coppertone as FRB now seemed fair, no less the fact that he had destroyed no checkpoints and left the runners to circumnavigate the cricket club prior to a lengthy On In. This ensured yet another Cinderella-perfected arrival back at 8:58 - it's all becoming so natural after nearly 13 years.
CIRCLE: As well as an extremely happy returns for Coppertone in all his half-trailblazing glory, there was also the desperation for Clawed Balls to land himself a more family friendly handle by going above and far beyond false at every checkpoint he came to on the trail; no such hard luck...
ON ON ON: A teetotallist may not be the best person to gauge a venue promised to be cheap with beer, but a £1:60 pint of Coke is definitely a great starting point. Great value for hash grub money too out in the Sprummer twilight - anchovy and veggie pizzas (no, they didn't have herbivores on top of them), along with carrots, cucumber and Pringles to make light work of the Hummous. Puts one right in the mood for next week's Castle Trail-Blaising.
Run 702, May 1st 2019.
WHERE: The Old Inn, Congresbury.
HARE: Rocky Horror.
WHO: 16 hashers, 1 hound and 1 visitor - wtflour?
RUN REPORT: Nothing personal against Rocky doing a little copy and pasting from the St George's Eve hash, surely - just lower than expected Sprummer numbers. Dongle and Software were out to score as many home made brownie points as possible prior to On Out debrief, and such an abundance of energy was soon in demand as soon as we had made rare use of a traffic light (not even for regrouping). A few checkpoints pointed us across the A370 and out past a back garden which we had been advised to skirt rather than invade - plenty of near-equilateral triangles promptly followed to keep our heads clear of the obstacles around the back of Cadbury-without-chocolate, before a hybrid of walker and runner uphills led us further astray to the surroundings of the non-chocolate hill fort (Croucher briefly vanished up a coombe without a paddle before a combination of hashers and sheep herded her in the right direction). It turned out that walkers were decreed as the Rambos as some stubborn (but thankfully unhorned) cattle emerged from where Rocky could not foretell - luckily none of us were in Rebore Red and it was a quick couple of hops back onto the territory of ruminants with wool, and then of course the shared territory of running bipeds. Out briefly onto the A road again the Star on Rhodyate Hill beckoned (many a provider of £100 worth of hash grub for the sum of £30), but the haute cuisine instead constituted a sweet stop with humbugs, tangy pastilles and wine gums (the reappearance of tarmac even irked Duracell sufficiently to temporarily wander off and use technology on the hash). By now we had a good inkling of how to reach that copy and paste from fortnights gone by, and that it would mean a good deal of A370 conquering again spliced with a good half hour under interception storage. Before we could even think of emerging from the foliage we needed to take in the sights and smells of more wild garlic, some bluebells blooming their last and a fish hook for 5 which may even have been fully obeyed! Perhaps they knew that reward beckoned in the long downhill that was long uphill (no flour remained, though I wouldn't put it past Rocky's organisation skills to have found a way to recycle each blob). Once again it was walkers taking the Rambo high road back to tarmac, though we were all united in noticing the slightly disconcerting absence of a galloping Cinderella once a regroup appeared to finish off the sweets. Off briefly lolloped Walky Talky to find Cinders (still occasionally called "Dad" on bogs hashes") doing none but gallivanting his way back down to earth.. We passed on the chance to recruit wondrous dog walkers who had passed the regroup before we then passed them, preferring to reminisce about St George's Eves gone by while wrapping the trail up around a neighbourhood who thankfully don't take hash symbols as imminent signs of burglary. The means of preventing an On Out / On In crossover proved to be effective if not quite ingenious, and so Millennium Green Down Downs it was with all past it and accounted for:
CIRCLE: Somehow this wasn't quite enough of a Grand Old Duke hash to warrant the same song for the hare; perhaps our ascent had been less punishing. Bendy though would certainly not have felt punished when told to "get a life, get a life, get a life life life" on account of her recent centurion status, and nor could Cinders put his brief disorientation down to a mighty respectable 2102 finishing time.
ON ON ON: Down and Dirty had already commandeered the Old Inn's back room for the secretive remainder of then brownies plus plenty of chips and sandwiches of the ham, egg, cheese and even mystery variety. Good thing the seldom drunk dry Airport Tavern run next hash cycle will be all her own haute cuisine...
Run 701, April 24nd 2019.
WHERE: The Downs School, Wraxall.
HARE: Inchworm – aided by REWIND.
WHO: Around 21 hashers.
RUN REPORT: Advertised as the Bluebell hash, the trail lived up to its name with bluebells a plenty. Eager Beaver had to disappear early, although managed to see the first of the bluebell glades, and reserve scribe, Cinderella, managed to catch up with the pack shortly after Eager had left, and just in time for the sweet stop. A few more bluebells and wild garlic, then a gentle run in past the this year’s lambs enjoying the pleasant evening, before a short drive took us to the Failand Arms just before 9 for a bread and chips supper.
CIRCLE and ON ON: Bumbaye bought good news on Coppertone’s improving health ( and told to pass on everyone’s best wishes to him), and received a down down for only coming once a year. And Doug, who only came out for his first hash on run 700 on Monday made his mark, or rather Poppy did with one of her paws on the front of his shorts. So it seemed natural that Doug should receive his new name of "Clawed Balls" as a result.
PS: did anyone else note that the route this week took on the shape of a hare’s head?
Run 700, April 22nd 2019.
WHERE: The Plough, Congresbury.
HARES: Software and Dongle.
WHO: 40 hashers and 5 hounds.
RUN REPORT: Behold the dizzy heights of a joint hash, complete with an Easter heatwave to bring out the crowds young, old and canine. At limber up (not designed to make us any warmer) the well established hares mentioned ups and downs spliced with wild garlic and a separation at the rallying cry of runners and walkers - virtually an even split as it transpired. Millennium Bridge and Green inevitably followed local rival pub the Congresbury Arms (formerly the Ship and Castle that never sailed and was only ever stormed by hashers), followed by a staking of our claim to what remains of Congresbury's depleting greenbelt (if the building site was anything to go by); Missapp even saw fit to do a long loop of her own in the direction of the perimeter fence. Time for some of that up and up and up - not only paying a visit to the undercover nature reserve en route but also coming across the bane of vampires as a regroup appeared in crossroads form. Not all of the young bucks had arrived when it came time for the FRBs to call On On with a Check It out, inevitably still upwards and into a runner/walker split with a 300 metre summit promised for the former. When two tribes fail to go to war, one food stop is not all you can score - sweet stop at first seemed unique for runners who had a few hash flashers among them (a perch was even sought for those cinematic poses), but when we emerged from the foliage on the Gothic outskirts of Wrington it became clear that reward would follow on many fronts. Even those who ignored/claimed ignorance of the meaning of the downhill fish hooks were not to be denied - for a forced obstacle to overcome would appear in the form of farm machinery. One tractor with trailer came up, another went back down, the provocative gender stereotypes about driving also prevailed, though patience was a virtue when it came to manoeuvring those enormous wheels round a corner with hashers watching at their beer stop. Duly obliged before another tractor or two (plus the young walking family fraternity caught us up), the culinary highlights included veggie and omnie sausage rolls, quiche without Lorraine, cheese with the only fruit it permits to share a cocktail stick with and of course a mixture of down down bevvies.
CIRCLE and ON ON ON: Grand Old Duke of York was the compulsory toasting for the hares, along with a reminder from Duracell that this trail certainly had not had too much concrete. A pleasant riverside On In to the Plough beckoned with the Vitamin D still beating down on us, arriving back at base sufficiently early to reach a consensus that daytime hashing had not been exploited with a lengthy trail. A garden shindig helped us to bask in the sun, taking in enough energy for two more trails in as many twilights. Plough one's way through that!
RUN 699, April 17th 2019.
WHERE: The Old Inn, Clevedon.
WHO: 20 hashers and one hound.
RUN REPORT: There are no rules! The virgin hare certainly knew whether we we coming, going or On-back-outing even if a bum had burnt bridges in setting it. A second Land Yeo crossing beckoned in as many weeks for lengthy On Out, though all on concrete for the time being as those in all surface shoes started to bemoan. One of these was Duracell who may have found it was draining his internal battery, though surely some expenditure was saved by it being a "one blob and you're on" trail with Court Woods seemingly not on the Old Inn agenda. A sense of culinary teasing was as short-lived as it was excruciating - first we went through a subway without a sandwich, then the Belly Busters snack van had seemingly shut up shop from Hither Green, and then ALDI was bypassed without the concept of an enormous sweet stop being realised. No, food would have to be the reward for petroleum hi-spirits - firstly a swift dash across, up and off Ettlingen Way, then a Green Cross Code inspired crossing of On and Off sliproads for the M5 (at least we didn't reverse up them), and then a more gentle pace past Clevedon Craft Centre to lull those false senses of security. For next there beheld the walkers' mad march up Court Lane (I used to go about 50mph along here, as a learner) while the runners finally quenched their cravings for tall grass alongside. They were quick enough to rejoin though in time for another of the safe M5 type crossings, branching off again for walker and runner greenery alongside the Land Yeo (the re-established and certainly not rusty Rebore even led the pack at one stage with enough time to turn a corner and...ahem..."water some flowers"). Even those with a Virgin On The Ridiculous lack of direction felt we were destined to now On In at 8:30; therefore surely nobody was unpleasantly surprised to be led down All Saints Lane and viva la Court Woods! If another M5 crossing were to beckon we would have been touching on ASS hash lengths, so the balance was deemed just right when various ups and downs led us to a semi-cliffhanger sweet stop. Plenty of liquorice appeared in non-allsorts form here (we were the ragtag group for tonight, after all) and at most people were frightened a tenth to death by the descent alongside a gully to the lesser known Court Woods doorway opposite Valley Road. One best laid plan was to not quite be tonight - a dash up the ripple to a beer stop with Mrs Bumburner had been planned, and normally we would never shun a trail's non-hasher but for 9pm already being very near - rest assured then it was nothing you didn't say and smiles were all round for this trail, complete with the stroll past Strawberry Hill in semi daylight; somewhere on said hill a NI NO symbol is still currently being deciphered...
CIRCLE and ON ON ON: Duracell had already scarpered away from a Down Down for whining about too much tarmac, Software though had not for whining about those that whine about too much tarmac. For a virgin hare there also appeared three virgin Bogs who had been recruited from the bar at the Star last week (just to blow my own hash horn, I was also a non-scribing virgin here once upon a time). Take note the grub is usually as top notch as tonight - plenty of chips were garnished with an abundance of white and granary sandwiches, mostly ham and egg. We finished all but a doggy bag's worth of this out on the patio while the quiz was in full swing, and a quick reminder went around that the 700th run will resurrect the Monday hash with Bristol hashers, with two more hashes including the bluebell run in as many days to follow. Perhaps I really should give up my day job...
RUN 698, April 10th 2019.
WHERE: The Star Inn, Tickenham.
HARE: Deep Throat.
WHO: 22 hashers and 3 hounds.
RUN REPORT: Classic never dies when it comes to Bogs territory, particularly when your grandmaster hare continually comes up with new cherries to put on the cake. We remain well accustomed to a slightly harey On Out up Clevedon Road (in hope of not quite hashing that far) then diving out of petrol's reach onto the Land Yeo greenbelt. Make that a wet woodland history lesson from the hare as a Moorend Spout regroup followed a bridge with wimp and Rambo ways across it - no less a W/R followed as walkers retraced their small springs footsteps to the riverside and the runners drained away along the Middle Yeo. Software suffered no namesake failures in the promptly acquired role of pressing flours for the runners, not even with a dwarfing pylon in close proximity - indeed it was the entire off the floor contingent that tried to catch up with the distant walkers as the crow would have flown; not a great ploy if you need energy in reserve for an uphill that the hare prophesised for later. At one point leading (and welcomingly returning) FRB Bend Over looked destined for a leap of faith over the water (Yeodelling?) but came to her lack of hash senses and trod flour again just as the Cinders plus one pack completed their not yet customary game of catch-up over the tall grass. A long burst of speed proved insufficient to catch those walkers in time for sweet stop, though thankfully also insufficient for arrows seemingly pointing On In to be trusted - an Out and In pair of symbols dutifully made as much of a ruckus as their homophonous instrument, thus ensuring a drumroll from the walkers and their sweet stop remnants - not just tangy haribo but the regular good example from Deep Throat of dried fruit in abundance. No less regular came our tried and tested ascent to Cadbury Camp, to some a pity it had to be such an equilateral angle (what were you expecting - a Scalene scale?!). Having glanced at the natural monolith rearing up before her, Kerb Crawler may at this point have decided to rest her calf and head On In - perhaps a foal would have been more successful. Slowed did the walkers considerably, but Ropey and Roisin showed considerable quick adjustment to the Bogs trade by reaching the semi summit of a beer stop right beneath the fort, pipped to the post only by a far from rusty Croucher and...ahem...Brigadoon! All that possible lack of checking and talk of early beer could have played a part; defiance in the face of any relapsing prepatellar bursitis no less so. Here we stood (some even sat!) waiting, waiting and waiting for runners to emerge from a route branching on and off of Cadbury Camp's tarmac - even the setting sun seemed hesitant to turn in for the night without the knowledge that Bogs had again stormed the fort without casualties - but with lactic acid again influencing our decision the walking fellowship split into short cutters, fort circumnavigators and the hare and scribe who stayed back to illuminate the landing strip for runners. Alas, they emerged from the same uphill as us one-step-at-a-times, claiming not a trace of flour until Deep Throat put them so right they may have been tempted to go back looking for it. Time was beer, though, and so on and around it was to find a fish hook for four on the descent to civilisation had certainly survived - for runners the best rule to adhere to here was number 1 - there are no rules! So scuffed out that symbol was then before heading along Washing Pound Lane to hang out those exhausted hashers on the Siegfried line On In - conquering the fort and its battlements turned out to be easier for some than hurdling a stile-less gate which was not even intended for use at On In, taking the latest touchdown to a tried and testing 9:25 (though of course it is Cinderella's On In time that grabs the headlines).
CIRCLE and ON ON ON: Rebore and Down & Dirty showed up to help drink the bar dry after storming the fort, after the hare had received the customary Grand Old Duke of York Down Down (we never dreamt of leaving him up there) and Bend Over had pretended not to have been a returnee. Along with a trough or two of chips plus many a sandwich variety there also came bar entertainment in Ropey and Roisin's hit it and hope pool, plus the constantly buffering TV which actually added occasional drama to those watching a sport played with floodlights rather than head torches. No doubt we will provide the entertainment at On On On for the Old Inn quizzers next week...
RUN 697, April 3rd 2019.
WHERE: The Blue Flame, Nailsea-ish.
HARES: Dressing Down and Up All Night.
WHO: A dirty, houndless dozen.
RUN REPORT: If you believe everything you read, you will be anticipating a big soak and a big freeze before Spring truly hits us - well, a little bit of the former may have put paid to a good turnout at the eternally burning Blue Flame, though handsome reward was certainly part of the itinerary. At mission briefing we were told about runners' routes potentially washed out, along with the first arrow it seemed as the hares reeled themselves and the FRBs back in and out onto the shaggy par excrement excellence. A very good thing too that we had welcome returnee Rebore (fresh from cancelled speedway - he likes dirt tracks in general) on call to whisper to any livestock, but it was mainly the latecoming Cinders brigade that heeded his metaphorical red rag and took in a lengthy runner circuit - in fact once the walkers spotted a miraculously surviving Regroup symbol a very brightly coloured set of runners homed in - one was Rewind in his signature yellow cape and the other was Cinders making the trail's future look bright. They were soon to jet off again though - by which stage we were back in suburbia and fearing a relapse of an eternal turnback a la classic Brigadoon from these parts. Well, there was some symbol unrest - somewhat bedraggled walkers grew a little weary/lactic acidic at waiting for the runners' second return at a sweet stop that they firstly finished off many of the tangy Haribos themselves, and then even briefly started talking about Brexshiggy before opting to plod on. The trade agreement reached of course was to keep some sweeties in reserve for those whose boots were made for takeoff, and they caught up quickly just as us walkers were passing the shock horror of a "Sprint!" symbol on the grounds of Nailsea and Backwell RFC. No sign of the 200th run symbol (another Briggy signature) but plenty of opportunity still for us to come a trail cropper - first there was a brick of a bridge over deep albeit watered-down shaggy, which fate conspired would form a mutually destructive pact with Eager Beaver. The latter picked up a stubborn but eventually extricated thorn for his troubles, but we all briefly found the briefly hare-less going tough in relocating petrol for the lengthy West End On In. Either the night's farmer gossip or simply our Somerset fame had spread, for one wannabe boy racer apparently chose the long diversion around our motley crew (clearly they had been briefed that hashers hunt in packs of at least 6), so a nice flat end to proceedings it was then to the delightfully uniform Blue Flame.
CIRCLE and ON ON ON: Still plenty of pumps to choose from at this drinking den comfortable enough to allow the hares a deli-teful ship in of garden grub - most of the cheeses vanished as quickly as the olives, baguettes and even cornerchons, even if the neighbouring sheep quickly realised they weren't getting any and scarpered back to their grass. As well as a toast to returnees and dried off hare pieces, a literally sparkling happy return was presented to Up All Night (enough for me to save some doggy-bag-style for Down & Dirty). The Bogs classics revival theme continues next week with a DT-inspired march to the Star at Tickenham - just when you thought we had combed all of that territory, up steps the GM...
Run 695, March 20th 2019.
WHERE: The White Hart, Weston in Gordano.
WHO: 21 hashers and 2 hounds.
RUN REPORT: Following the wrong paint blobs as opposed to flour blobs led to a late arrival by yours truly along with Ropey and the as-yet-handle-less Roisin, though helping ourselves to the most convenient space in the car park and previous co-haring experience from here (albeit in the direction) helped a massive dollop. It took but a light jog or two down Weston Drove to quickly pick out the jogging lights in the distance, no doubt well briefed by Houdini planning another miraculous escape from the shiggy in time for a 9pm down down. Still, a little navigational nous was needed to spot the bridge too near and to make sure it wasn't the sheep doing the herding - treading tarmac once more, the revelation soon reached us BRB whippersnappers that fish hooks for 5 and 6 were completed in the assumption that our head torches were not those of hashers. Scandal was thankfully not heaped upon scandal when reaching the sweet stop just prior to Walton Brook's shiggy and boggy return - not only were enough gelatin goodies retained for the omnivorous Eager and Ropey, Roisin also snapped up a share of the remaining chocolate peanuts - a vegan's best friend. Runners then briefly caught the notion that they should stick with this Z road, but even then 'twere not long before the tardy trio were left to their own paces again. Many a helpful arrow across the non-babbling Brook prevented us from treading water or even thin air, many a Deep Throat meanwhile turned lollipop man once a B-road crossing back to Beer Stop was called for - we did of course have the quarter-hourly nearby chimes of St Peter and Paul to remind us a brisk pace would be needed for that 9pm homecoming.
CIRCLE: Drinks emerged for all tastes and tolerances, far enough off the road for safety and not too far off to avoid this advertising opportunity for Bogs to traffic. Hot Fuzz and Wet Fuzz (what, no shiggy fuzz?) were the Bogs virgins presumably not recruited while out driving, Houdini was the hare with a backwards memory well appreciated.
ON ON ON: Meadows, Orchards, molehills-come-mountains, a slightly puzzling shanked granny knot to undo in opening a gate - this On In made sure it was all squeezed in; likewise the food that I did at least take a visual sample of ahead of skittles duty. Chips were not quite chunky but also certainly wider than the McDonalds variety, as were the ragtag sandwiches and a salad with enough rocket to make you blast off to Rewind's Back well voyage mystery...
Run 694, March 13th 2019.
WHERE: The Sawyer's Arms, Nailsea.
HARES: Eager Beaver.
Run 693, March 6th 2019.
WHERE: The George, Abbots Leigh.
HARES: Coppertone and Inchworm.
WHO: 12 hashers, 1 well wisher and 3 visitors.
RUN REPORT: It wasn't just the scenery that quickly lured us back to these parts as will be revealed - our well-wishing but convalescent Inside Out indeed preferred the Inside to any On Out and so it was a non-baker's dozen that were going to get dirty. Runners and Walkers had their own Manor of reaching said Road out near Abbots Pool, with some friendly and naturally well-lit bikers pointing out flour arrows to the latter. The lack so far of copious shaggy meant we did not literally stick to the tarmac, instead simply calling back those who checked far and above at the various surviving circles of flour (not usually a location with many screams of "petrol", but needs must). We had been forewarned of the slippery stuff underfoot, but not so much the novelty of an enormous figure of 8 that would meet, greet and ye - treat our visit to West Tanpit Wood. Particularly as it came with a speed split away from the traffic and an upping of the stakes when it came to flour hunting. Walkers were quick to feel lonely when they heard the runners' distant On Ons tantalising their way through the trees, and so a makeshift marshmallow stop from Bag Lady was most welcome prior to a return to the regroup symbol miraculously just as intact as it was 0.33 hashes previously. A return here of course meant a likely splice of On Out and On in, but not before Abbots Pool had been visited by all (not sure if the runners may have On-Outed it; I'm flagging) and duly declared a hashers' nature reserve (if that doesn't preserve it, what will). We had kept within recovery's distance of home base all night (one more plus side to a figure of 8 in amongst a figure of 0) but the legs told us it was getting on somewhat before a touchdown at 9:20 albeit with nobody shivering; could Spring beckon?
CIRCLE: Make that a low-key rectangle in our crowded, cosy corner, keeping the hare congratulations to a minimum in terms of length and volume - plenty instead to fill our mouths...
ON ON ON: Ulterior hashing motive - the ciabattas were back! While not yet provoking a chorus of "can we hash here every week?!", they certainly made the popping-in-to-say-hello-and-eat-dinner Woodbine, Inside Out and Dressing Down feel welcome in culinary and numerical terms. They even had Eager Beaver friendly chip/wedge hybrids on offer - turns out Doggy bags have another purpose than merely for carrying your haggard hound home...
RUN 691, February 20th 2019.
WHERE: Casa de Deep Throat y Red Light, Clevedon.
HARE: Deep Throat.
WHO: 13 hashers, 2 hounds and 2 visitors.
RUN REPORT: A grandmasterly trail and warm-up just as we were in danger of forgetting how to do the hoki-coki, and a welcome return as well to Dressing Down and Up All Night plus Woodbine, especially as Mudlark has had few companions at her eye level on recent shiggy splashes. No runner was about to spurn a loop-de-loop around Herbert Gardens, particularly on a night when several checkpoints ended up being solved by the walking fraternity (Rewind in particular being reined in from false On Ons and Coppertone taking point as he is becoming re-accustomed). We have thrown the footpaths around Highdale in the blender more than thrice over time, and this time the resulting conglomeration was two runners' loops, one of which had Houdini as a brave participant with a gammy foot. Well, none but the sturdiest of souls and soles could win out against the looming ascent onto Dial Hill's less familiar playing field - after all, there were but fallen trees to hurdle as well as absent rope swings to motivate, and so the real impetus for reaching these dizzy heights (still ahead of runners, to boot) was a sweet stop of the ultra-guilt-free variety. Assorted haribo there was but a few, but much more of a demolition job was done on the crystalline ginger, darker than dark chocolate and the very regular DT choice of prunes; after all that it was no surprise to see running head torches come tumbling down form above and afar. Now that we were ensconced within one of our well mapped stomping grounds it was left to chance just what way we could be brought back down to earth - a Rippleside? A strawberry hill out of season? No - we somehow found a New Dark Way along Old Park Road en route to the well worn lines and arrows just underneath Clevedon's peak, where constellations and sitters on the hash were always likely to abound, what with all the running witnesses having found another limb to briefly go off on...
CIRCLE: None too many misdemeanours to report though we certainly preferred to christen this as a "He Marched Them Up To The Top" hash rather than as boring and simple as the hare had prophesised. In terms of the marching down again, almost a novelty befell us after all these years - a speed split after the beer stop. To walk was to encounter some reggae music fans marching themselves to a spot where they assumed peace would prevail, to run was to savour the cricket club pavilion all ahead of the by-now-compulsory zigzag back down to a Hill Road On In - a far from exhaustive 8:45 loomed at the finishing straight, that's the time rather than the fish hook number.
ON ON ON: It was a case of Red Light serving up what was insisted was a DT soup concoction of leek, cauliflower and broccoli complimented by ciabatta - we had been good enough to eat up all our sweets first, after all. With the weather continuously on the up we may not need cosy indoors at the end of a hash much longer, but On On to the Grove Sports Centre possibly with chilli next week all the very scrumptious same!
Run 690, February 13th 2019.
WHERE: The Kings Arms, Easton-in-Gordano.
HARES: Kerb Crawler and Walky Talky.
WHO: 13 hashers, 1 hound and 1 pub-sitter.
RUN REPORT: Never a big ask to take in new surroundings from the Kings Arms, never a bitter Pill to swallow. A convalescent Inside Out wished us a well way out while keeping watch over those preparing grub, signifying another On Out with circumnavigation of the St George's Parish without the parishioners (or the roadkill of our last such outing!). Petrol paid us the proper respect as we commandeered the elevated way over the M5 and down onto Avon Cycle Way terrain, and the non-motorised transport was just as forgiving for a runners' loop into a turnback. In fact, the only non-homo-sapiens transport that did lay insult to this trail was the equine shiggy dotted along this back-back route, so it was up to our good selves to make things a little more of a challenge than maybe even a co-hare would want. First there was Fondue, Coppertone and a much cleaner Mudlark getting sufficiently lost to force Deep Throat into mid-hash use of technology, amidst that there were On Ons from every direction thankfully including the correct one, and then the Sweet Stop threw its own massive spanner and hammer in the works while nonetheless having the chivalry to offer up non-tangy pastilles. Walky Talky opted to pave the way for the still-looping runners at this point, but the hagglers didn't have too long to wait for the stragglers before venturing forth (with a little favour repayment for bikers, of course) to Pill Harbour not via our accustomed itinerary. This also meant a few walkers completing the checkpoints (and, since a lot of turns came forth, with aplomb!); if anything was likely to finally rein n the runners it was a regroup to replenish apparent flour supplies, followed by the revelation out on the grassy knoll that it was actually to round up the beer stop! Cue flattened sphere:
CIRCLE: We didn't need much of a clean-up, but that didn't stop the mango juice fermenting into something tasting of soap for some and mango for others; for others the beverage of choice was that stuff apple and sometimes pear juice ferments into. A down-down from high up was necessary for those who got lost and called premature On Ons, though we probably also would have awarded one for the declaration that 5 miles-nay-minutes of the trail remained, with yet another 9pm touchdown or as good as. I hope this isn't enough of a norm now to be an unwritten rule among Bogs lore...
ON ON ON: Guitarists of the aspiring professional variety were just packing up before we encouraged them to stay around for a few jester jigs in the front lounge, taking in a still studious and semi-scribing Inside Out in the process. If the foreshadowed chunky chips and stacked-high sarnies were not to your...okay, my taste then there was a small slice of delicious buttery coffee cake to opt for from the bar. Given its "small size", one can assume the large slice would have been the rest of the cake. On on to another fine host with generous hash run and culinary portions next week, of the GM variety in one sense...
Run 689, February 6th 2019.
WHERE: The Langford Inn, probably in Langford.
HARES: Software and Dongle.
WHO: 14 hashers and 1 hound.
RUN REPORT: A pretty persistent precipitation we normally do not mind on the hash (even if it made the increasingly solitary hound Mudlark resemble a Baked Alaska by the time of On In), but when fragile markings became the mainly non-existent kind, consternation threatened to reign supreme. Traffic cooperated by making plenty of way for us at On Out, and then those who were merely in it for the comfortable and cosy aftermath pretended they had not seen the On In symbol which would later substitute itself for cider and water stop, all the while missing the massive white arrows that grew in their descendants' place (a tutorial on the concept of a checkpoint was even deemed a necessity at one point). In between some daring dashes over bridges and shin-deep shiggy it was Coppertone who began leading the troops beyond footwear enemy lines, capturing the runners' flag while they were making an effort to wander into Wrington territory, though even they returned in time to savour the surrounding smells of Monaghan Mushrooms who really would be more popular if they grew in floral shiggy. No better time than the future then for a non-aromatic sweet stop; first we needed to kiss a few gates en route to non-bovine civilisation and perform a redundant circumnavigation of a field - all in the name of hash fun rather than a co-hare's bearings getting lost in the shiggy, of course. If it really was a bit of AWOL you were after, head back in the direction of the smell. First there was Eager Beaver who (having spent most of the night boasting about knowledge of this area by daylight) took a tumble into light shiggy following a plunge of faith over a stile, and then seemed to briefly inspire BRBs to opt for the tarmac track back to base. No let up for those fun guys who followed the mushrooms, though - with the bracken-emblazoned footpath swallowing up and then spewing us out onto Stock Lane (farm and veterinary traffic country), the rain did at least let up a little, though not sufficiently for our route back to the vet grounds to constitute dry or permeable land. Reward did come though with extra liquorice on Maysmead Lane plus the executive decision to down-down indoors. All that ducking and diving had dulled our sense of time, but no bother - it was yet another 9pm-on-the-Cinderella-dot touchdown!
CIRCLE & ON ON ON: A slight lack of order was quickly explained by the grandmasterly Deep Throat's appearance at the pub only, with many items of attire left to dry under the glare of the octagonal gazebo's heater. After congratulating the hares again for expanding their repertoire and promptly forgetting all the twists and tumbles we had endured, grub was promptly up. Not sure if the Langford is a Virgin Bogs (or hash altogether) pub*, but it was certainly out to impress a la the Ciabatta George at Abbots Leigh. Spicy salsa, ketchup and mustard were among the pick of the dipping sauces, with sausage quarters, spring rolls, filo wraps, chunky chips and a multitude of sarnies all taking turns to dive in. All well worth the tiny increase in subs - time to eat like the King's Arms at our tried and definitely trusted Pill next time under the stars...
*Once before. Hallowe'en 2007.
Run 687, January 23rd 2019.
WHERE: The Bristol House, Weston-super-Mare.
HARES: Naughty bairns Brigadoon and Ballsport .
WHO: 21 hashers and 2 hounds.
We're on the march with Briggy's Army!
We're going to the Bristol House!
And we'll really climb high up, though we didn't reach the top
Yet we are still the greatest Bogging team!
I heard it said that Drop 'Em was a returning Bog Queen
Some people said the sweet stop was the tangiest they'd seen
That Eager and Rocky were the only fish hooked 2
But Briggy's Tartan Army loved the Grove Park sweet stop 2!
Back on the march with Briggy's Army
We headed fast past the Blakehay
And we huffed and puffed so hard when we reached the Boulevard
Cos Briggy stopped us going down Highway!
When we reached the Milton Road we really were to show
The BRBs a short cut that they could never know.
They represent pace setters and they have to do or die
For runners cannae do it, no matter how hard they try!
We're on the trudge with Briggy's Army, we're heading back to Bristol House
And the runners shook us up..appearing to fill their cups
Cos Briggy's are the greatest Bogging Team. Yes Briggy's are the greatest Bogging Team!
Yes, Briggy's are the greatest Burns Night Team!
CIRCLE: Snap out of it - those shameful 12 out of 15 fish hook rebels were overlooked in favour of Software's description of a checkpoint as a circle (clearly we just needed to turn her off and back on to remedy this) as well as welcoming Virgin Amy who had doubtless needed little persuasion from her connoisseur acquaintance Missapp. Speaking of excellent taste...
ON ON ON: Climbing one half mountain means demolishing another of the Haggis, Neap and Tattie variety, including those that prefer not to line their stomach with stomach. Pastures new for the ASS Hash were also announced in the form of coastal Porlock - better get saving that cider!
Run 686, January 16th 2019.
WHERE: Grove Sports Centre, Nailsea.
HARE: A "live" Kerb Crawler.
WHO: 17 hashers and 1 hound.
RUN REPORT: A hunting pack quite aptly set off from the sports centre with the intention of merely down downing the hare rather than feeding her to the hounds – luckily the persistent threat of precipitation meant she was anything but crawling along the many kerbs and making it a “one blob and you’re on” night. During the early stages the gap was undoubtedly stretched by multiple On On echoes which fooled front runners into returning – “you’re correct, we were calling back the falsies” – you get the idea if you’re a Bog (or anyone who likes to pretend it’s army training). The fact that the hare scent was by now diminishing rapidly was further exacerbated by the much stronger aroma of rival eateries the White Lion, Noggins' Chippy and the Moorend Spout (though I last went in there under Labour). We had at least scared off the Nailsea boy racers prior to trudging our way to a sweet stop with midget gems and tangy fruit pastilles; all perhaps an elaborate ruse to lure many the tranquil way On On when really we were meant to take on the Parish Brook shiggy coupled with that small hole in the bridge which even hounds have been known to struggle with. Just as we roared up Engine Lane with the news that the hare was back under cover the heavens decided they were left sufficiently ajar to give both us and the blobs a good soaking, enough to send a few FRBs AWOL and for Briggy to briefly forget 'tis but a mere 5 stone throws (or Football Field On In for the rest of us) that separates the Ring o Bells from the Sports Centre. 9pm Touchdown!!
CIRCLE: Once finished drying off indoors and directing our sweet stop bitterness towards the bone dry hare, a Conga line was formed consisting of the short-cutters-by-design Woodcut, Brigadoon, Ballsport, Double D and Soggy Bottom (I didn’t check, but most of us were close to wringing anyway), plus the emphasis of incorrect On Ons from Rewind and Deep Throat (I’m sure there were at least 5 throughout; we need to raise our game!). An announcement followed about an Easter Monday hash that will not be on a Wednesday (undoubtedly with an article 50 theme about a failed attempt to convert Greyhounds and K&As to fish hooks and runner/walker splits) – let’s get those hash grub resolutions sorted first.
ON ON ON: Tempting though it was to bring up that On On issue (since we were at our established AGPU venue) the cauldron of scrumptious veggie soup and DIY buttered baguettes quickly got our minds on replenishing all those calories with merely 100% interest. Tartan hash was also announced at the Bristol House next week by Briggy so no need for stereotyping - Och Aye The Noo!
Run 685, January 9th 2019.
WHERE: The George, Abbots Leigh.
HARE: Rocky Horror.
WHO: 14 hashers and 2 hounds
RUN REPORT: Rocky Horror is fast becoming the king of the solo hare - no disputes present; the flour either gets dotted his way or not at all. A lot of info was passed to this well-insulated mob at On Out, including an immediate runners' route with a steep Rocky incline/decline after an equilateral warning, plus of course a prophecy of this being through bikers' country. If taking a tumble was not on one's agenda then walkers' shiggy needed negotiating, not to mention making sure we didn't merge with On In arrows which were to appear later on Monarch's Way. The real Kings and Queens of course emerged from their up, down and off the ground escapade at a regroup on the skirt of Leigh Woods with the coffee stand mysteriously shut in the pitch black. No worry - we were kept well alert by twisting and turning our way through the colour coded trails, sensibly avoiding those designed for BMX hashers and even answering the occasional number 1 call of nature en route to the sweet stop. It was quite a choice of viewing here - we either had the suspension bridge still dressed up to welcome in 2019 to the East, or the sight of the returning Brigadoon to the West, equipped with searchlight as usual but not equipped with Ballsport. Novelty too among the sweeties - deluxe jelly babies quickly grew up inside us, while white mice and humbugs engaged us oh so curiously. For R and W it was again to be a case of "nice knowing you" until the next regroup - walkers were there first after finding the going as easy as falling off a few logs, and perhaps their caution deserted them as a result - two distant headtorches materialised into those of the forewarned bikers, basically FWBs over FRBs, and in trying to stand out of their way we stood right in their way - they don't follow flour quite as keenly. A tale to tell the runners who soon reappeared for more sweets of the unexplained - Sherbet Flying Saucers were certainly a blast from the past, as were humbugs as we'd started the pack 20 minutes previously. Familiar too was Monarch's Way which we soon dived shiggy boot first onto, finding a transmogrified arrow leading over more empty fields to the church with silent bells at 9pm - oh what a Holy Trinity!
CIRCLE: With the On In in plain sight we toasted another rocky Rocky hash with cider and spring water depending on your constitution, calling to order Brigadoon, Deep Throat and Up All Night for tinkling on the hash - we always were likely "to know what you were doing". This enabled a touch down at ten past 9, leaving us suitably ravenous for what lay within.
ON ON ON: Bedazzled by the Louis XV Chandelier above we made fine use of Stourbridge Crystal cutlery to promptly consume Lobster a la Grecque with lashings of truffle and caviar, all washed down with Bollinger 75. Or at least, that's how haute cuisine the pub grub felt - enough wonderous golden chips were brought out for a mountain each, and the same could be said for pulled pork, beef and cheesy ciabattas which we finished off almost half as quickly as they appeared. Let's not forget too both the half pint of cordial that the scribe got on the house, and the ample thus reasons to return here! Even the Grove Sports Centre, purveyor chilli and AGPU spreads par excellence, will be doing well to surpass this next week.
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