To be honest I wasn't much looking forward to haring 1405. I had over indulged the day before and only finally got to bet [i bet you mean bed ... ed] at 1:30pm in a highly-intoxicated state.
The other thing that put me off was the weather forecast, which was predicting a 100% probability of a rain drenched run. Despite this I hunkered down and after a quick brekky it was an early start to lay the trail. Rain (pah) it was actually snowing.
Given the inclemency of the weather I decided to head for Chicksands Woods and avoid the open fields that are customary fayre for this venue. Twas a good thing because as time progressed the snow turned from a light flurry to a full on snow burst (didn't know what word to use, but chose burst). Anyways – trail laid and I eventually get back to the pub a bit dampened and muddy but otherwise in high spirits (still from the day before no doubt).
Wow – What a fab turnout considering the weather. As the hare I was REALLY chuffed. Thanks to everyone for deciding to challenge the conditions and making such a great effort.
The circle was called – No birthdays or anniversaries, but a returnee in the form of Matthew (aka Knobber's nephew). A newish (used once before) FRB check was explained followed by an H5 bloomer brigade photo and it was time to send the pack on its way. Before you could say "Crumpled 4-skins" it was a ladies check.
The short cutters were despatched in one direction and the main pack head off in the other direction. The two groups eventually meet up at the edge of Chicksands Woods and it's into the Labyrinth. My sense of direction is not great at the best of times and after frazzling 50% of my brain cells the day before there was really only one outcome. Mid way through the trail, I suddenly realised I didn't have a clue where I was, or how to escape the maze.
Using a combination of numbered checks, the afore mentioned FRB check, and some pretty hapless/inept haring the group were kept mostly together. Walnut Whip Willy, Willy Warmer, Underlay, Depth Charge & Rapid were the unfortunate souls that were snared by the FRB check, but it definitely served its purpose so expect this to become a standard feature on my future runs.
I quite enjoyed the weather conditions as it felt like being inside your own personal snow globe. The snow made the forest look quite stunning and it wasn't even cold (can anyone please explain to me why I never felt cold).
After emerging from the forest, the pack regrouped (mostly thanks to the final numbered check). The walkers were sent on the direct route back to the pub and the athletically empowered runners were despatched via a slightly more circuitous route.
It was a pleasure to see everyone back at the pub safe and sound, albeit a tad bedraggled.
The Greyhound has been done up since our last visit and it's a nice warm cosy pub and outside was neither warm nor cosy. With this in mind it was decided that a circle outside would not be held. Misdemeanour downs-downs were not awarded on this occasion, but I am pleased to say that the hares down-down was duly delivered. As this was just a top up from the day before, I must apologise for not being able to chug my beer in customary style.
On-on to The Black Lion, Leighton Buzzard
PS. For those attending the adult panto on Friday. The show starts at 7:30, so meet beforehand in the "Long Bar" above the theatre. Please bring cash as you will need to pay me £16 per head before I can pick up the tickets. With this in mind, please try to arrive at the theatre by 7ish. The Market Theatre is on Sun Street and the post code is SG5 1AE. The best place to park is the car park located behind The Sun Hotel. There are 11 of us going and 12 of us are booked for a meal afterwards at Pizza Express. It should be great fun.