At last, spring in the air with a comfortable temperature and a threat of actual sunshine. The car park situated near where the old railway used to cross Severals road looked like a micro lake district as the chariots splashed their way through the bottomless brown puddles trying to find a dry spot on which to come to an halt.
We gathered on an island to go through the preliminaries, welcoming back Clem (one of Dr Blood's corpuscles) before Spiderman told us to expect no fish hooks, a regroup, a ladies check, dryness and flatness etc. Then we were off in all directions looking for a start and finding lots of falsies, which was just as well because Olive Oyl and Popeye splashed in just in time to catch us finally finding a way back along the road to a check outside the pub.
Amidst the expected comments along the lines of why go any further Old Faithful and Flash remembered the semi obscure footpath west through the rhododendrons to Tyelands. Here there was a short pause in a fast pace while Bika checked a long falsie east towards the start and Clem drew some back to a previous check which he had somehow missed the first time.
Soon the pack found the way north over a lovely soft mossy glade into The Warren. Suddenly I noticed that we had been joined by Dogwhistle who had done well to find us after arriving late. Now it was east back into the rosiedandrums with our JMs in the lead, but not for long as we came upon a Spiderman special involving a complex loop around an unmissable falsie mark.
This was followed by use of the hidden jungley path that runs between the two east/west main trails which crosses two nice wet ditches. There was lots of fun here, lots of wet feet and a few brown bottoms. A series of simple checks then took us north all the way up to the Severals clearing and the moment of truth, was it going to be a right or left handed turn?
An impromptu regroup here gave us time to ponder while Snake Charmer became more and more eager to get on with it. Sinbad and most of the pack correctly guessed that it would be right, and as we crossed Severals road and started up the hill towards Heathbarn Farm the old timers also correctly guessed that we would end up at the seat on the summit where we always have a sit down and have a chat and a flash.
Not only a good view but as promised a ladies check to boot, and with plenty of lovely ladies on hand it wasn't long before one, Olive Oyl I think, stumbled on a trail all the way over to the playground/cemetery overlooking Midhurst. From here it was pretty obvious that we must head south west for home, and the hares did not want us to miss the old open cast clay pits en route.
So soon we were wandering around amid the deep water holes and lightly wooded embankments finding a trail in fits and starts, a very disorganised manner. Splasher found it hard going as he had to hash through loads of scrubby bits in order to avoid getting close to the watery bits where attendant possies were all to eager to give him a dunk. Somewhere in here Pru failed to prevent a self inflicted backward slide into the mire that left her sporting a seriously slimy rear.
These dramas were the finale as we emerged from the workings and the ever enthusiastic Clem soon found the On-Inn after one hour and fifteen minutes of soggerific hashing.
At the circle, after applause for the hares finally died down and Pansci did his best to avoid stepping in a big mount of horse dung we talked about how wimpy some such as Panda had been in the shiggy and how impatient some such as Sinbad and The Gnu had been by already having gone back to the pub. Especially as Sinbad had made some comments about one of our JMs with Buddy on lead being two dogs together.
The name that came up most often though was that of Splasher who amongst other things had managed to avoid getting wet so well, thus ensuring that he was awarded the Hash-It. Almost everyone retired to The Country Inn for sustenance and the sun shone and everything was wonderful.