25th AniversaryHornblower brought a brand new antique horn, Splasher brought newbie Tracy, Hugh was wearing "honest I just put them in the washing machine shoes", Torchy brought his new knee. and Treefeller brought us all a certificate for this anniversary run.
We waited a bit for Mr Pastry who was biking in before heading out down the road towards Wildham Barn with Flash saying we've got to be back by twelve thirty to eat the grub!.
The first check just at the bottom of the hill had us looking hard for trail in all directions, eventualy finding it to the east along the edge of Wildams Wood and then heading back south to bring us out on the main trail from the carpark, this was a good warm-up on a what was a dull but dry day.
From here we followed Hornblower's hoots straight up the steep slope towards the top of Lambdown Hill using the bike trail until we ground to a halt, flummoxed by the check at the top.
Hornblower seemed to be running on rocket fuel as he sniffed the way out and we all followed south just below the ridge along a deer trail and back out on the main path and then up to the crosspaths at the top of Stoughton Down.
We had little trouble with the rest of the route which was an anticlockwise loop via Blackbush and cutting down to Greatdean Bottom with Mussolini taking frequent shortcuts and Dr Blood waving his hand in the air to get a signal on that Sat-thingy.
A literal sting in the tail was provided by a hard climb back up Lambdown Hill and long On-In through chest high nettles.
The joint masters did not thank themselves for a great hash (which it was) but did mention John Nash for commenting that the trail must have been laid by idiots, and Sweaty Butterfly for the crime of asking hikers if they had seen any flour. The Hash-It was awarded to Splasher for being so luvey-duvey and holding hands with Tracy for most of the run...ahh.
Then on down to the Barley Mow for a celebration lunch at which there was talk of the early years and the founding hashers.
Flash lead us all in a toast to "Absent Hashers" and Tigger recounted the first hash from East Dean laid by Ian Barton and Phil Spooner twentyfive years before.
Flowers were presented to Tigger and The Chamois who were among the twentyeight on that first hash and Doc Freeman (also there) said a few words before cutting a celebration cake which was soon devoured even though the pack had already eaten well.
A big helping of thanks must go to Pru, Amanda, Alan, and Graham for arranging this celebration which left everyone with a smile on their face and perhaps for some a touch of nostalgia in their heart.