Hare, Beer and Chef guide

Beer Meister Guide
The Beer meister has a critical role in the hash. No one want’s to go without a tasty beverage at the end of the run or have no beer for the circle….
The logistics for Beer meister are quite easy: go to shop, buy beer, bring to hash. Stocking up once every few weeks with beer, cider, soft drinks & water is recommended and we can recommend Aldi and Lidl as suppliers of good beer cheaply. Two grades of beer should be purchased: good stuff for voluntary consumption and cheaper tins for down downs. Speak to the hash cash/hash tick to get your money back.

Chef Guide
The Chef is also critical to OH3: we are one of the few hashes in the UK who do food and it makes a big difference! If you have time and enthusiasm to cook, then this is appreciated, but it isn’t mandatory. In the summer, rolls with a selection of fillings are a good option and just involve a trip to the supermarket. Aim to feed 20 people, but adjust this based on recent turn out and time of year. If you want to have a crack at cooking, go for dishes that are easy to scale up, such as soup. And one important point to remember: we have several vegetarians and one coeliac (gluten intolerant), so try to go for options that cater for the vegetable lovers and/or can be gluten free. Goldilocks can provide recipes if you need suggestions. Speak to the hash cash/hash tick to get your money back.

Hare Guide

The hash survives from week to week as a result of everybody taking his or her turn to be a hare and lay a trail. It is a real challenge to research and lay a good trail with the aim of outwitting the pack of runners – the hounds. It can then be very satisfying to watch them find their way around your trail. The overall aim should be to keep together a pack composed of different standard runners through judicious trail laying and the use of short cuts.

The objective of the hash is to lay a circular flour trail from the pub to form an interesting run that ends up at the beer stop – a short distance from the pub. The trail should take between 1 hour and 1 and 1/4 hours to run with well-planned checks and the occasional more difficult check to allow the slower runners to catch up, thus keeping the pack together. A re-group can also be incorporated to bring the pack back together. Further instructions can be issued there as necessary. Trails should be laid by pairs of hares and not singly.

As the Oxford Hash always runs at 7pm on a Wednesday evening we have two distinct types of trail:

  • Winter runs: Town and city based making use of the lit streets and interconnecting footpaths where the use of a torch is necessary.
  • Summer trails: Daylight runs starting from pubs in surrounding villages making use of country footpaths and other public rights of way.

Hares’ Responsibilities

The responsibilities of the hare are:

  • Research and lay a trail starting from the appointed pub to commence at 7 p.m.
  • Check with the pub landlord well in advance that it is acceptable to use their pub as a hash venue. Warn them that there will be up to 40 people guzzling their beer and ask them to make the necessary staffing and stock arrangements. Some landlords will provide free plates of chips or sandwiches for the group if cajoled gently: don’t push this point too hard though.
  • Inform the Hash Beer Master and Chef of where the beer stop for that week will be. Also let them know where on the trail it is possible for them to shortcut back in order to set it up.
  • Brief the runners of any hazards on the trail such as livestock in the fields and of any unusual trail markings.
  • Keep pack together
  • Make sure everybody gets back home to the pub.
  • Mark the trail for latecomers. Carry some flour with you on the run to lay arrows from the pub.

Researching the Trail

  • Pick a pub where you think you can set a good trail from (if the hair-razor hasn’t already picked one for you). The Pub should also sell good real ale and be prepared to put up with 30 or 40 noisy hashers.
  • Obtain a map for the area: use the Oxford A-Z for the city runs in winter and in the summer use the Ordnance Survey 1:25,000 scale map of Oxford (Explorer 180).
  • Plan a route using the map picking out suitable places for checks, re-groups and short cuts. The trail should be approximately five miles long.
  • Walk or run the trail several times to familiarise yourself and your fellow hare with the trail. Remember that a one hour hash will take over two hours to walk.
  • Plan the trail around footpaths, bridleways and other public rights of way. The use of private land must be by consent only. Where footpaths cross farmers’ fields containing livestock or crops it is only courteous to inform him that 30 to 40 runners will be using the footpaths over his land.
  • Use the geography of the area to confuse the pack’s sense of direction and always ensure the pack can’t see the pub or beer stop from any point on the trail.
  • Avoid long straight runs between checks, as this will just space the pack out.
  • Include a few loops for the faster runners to keep the pack together.
  • Checks should occur every 300 to 500 metres or so but at varied intervals and, if possible, at natural check points. The trail should start up again within about 30 to 50 metres and anywhere in a 360 degree circle, i.e. “BACK CHECKS” are allowed.
  • Pick a safe location for the beer stop (i.e. not where cars are broken into or where there are double-yellow lines) and plan how the Cellarman can leave the beer truck there or shortcut to it during the hash. Hasher’s back gardens make ideal locations.

Laying the Trail

  • It will usually take two hares at least 3 hours to lay the trail and will use at least 5 bags of flour.
  • If possible lay the trail immediately before the hash. This will eliminate the possibility of it being washed away, sabotaged or eaten.
  • Before laying the trail consider hiding some flour en-route so that you have less to carry with you.
  • Lay the trail with the cheapest flour you can find: Tesco’s or Sainsbury’s value range.
  • In damp conditions trails can also be laid in sawdust or chalk. The latter two can be mixed with flour for economy. For health reasons do not be tempted to use Lime.
  • Do not use chalk on the city pavements as it will still be there many weeks later: very confusing for subsequent hashes.
  • Flour blobs can be on the ground, fence-posts, trees and garden walls etc. and should be every 20 or 30 yards. In open country the spacing needs to be closer, especially when changing direction.

Markings

Oxford H3 Trail Markings
Marking Description Purpose
* Blob Four consecutive flour blobs indicate the correct trail.
O Check From which the trail can go off in any direction.
X False Found after the last blob on a false trail.
RG Re-group Wait until all the runners have arrived.
<- Arrow Indicates direction of trail.
ON INN On Inn approximately 1/4 mile before the beer stop. Indicates that the end of the trail is nigh.

On the day

  • Brief the runners of any hazards on the trail such as livestock in the fields and of any unusual trail markings.
  • Mark the trail with arrows from the pub for latecomers. A fairy liquid bottle or cycle water bottle can be very useful for this. On some terrain the check circles can be cut in the direction of the trail.
  • There should always be two hares – one in the middle to front of the pack and one bringing up the rear looking after the slower runners.
  • If in doubt – consult the hair razor or ask an experienced hasher for help.

Remember: The main objective is to keep the pack together.

Ladybird Sept 2002

Hare Ye Well

Hare Ye Well is guide to Hash trial laying written by Biggles and revised by Busby, both of whom have hashed with many of the hashes in Devon. Hare Ye Well can be downloaded from the following links:

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Posted September 29, 2015 by oxfordhashhouseharriers

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