|28 Apr 2019||Keith & Kay||Ainslie|
This was the KVH3’s second visit to the Catherine Wheel – the first being number 69 back in October 2000. There was a good turn out this time (approx 9 runners & 13 walkers plus Rocky and Jess the dogs).
This was a hash of two pubs – the Swan for the start and the Catherine Wheel for the Aprés. Perfectly clear … so long as you’d read Keith’s email and were at the Swan for the hash start.
Keith explained the unusual shape of the trail, which was a Figure of 8, where one loop was shorter than the other (the short), the medium trail was the other loop, and the long, the full ’8’. There was no long/short divide.
Most walkers followed the medium trail, and set off in the opposite direction to the runners. I was just losing sight of the runners in the far distance when Keith caught up with me and we jogged on together up the long and strenuous hill through the village, soon losing the crowds of tourists. We were rewarded with beautiful views far reaching of the Cotswolds. The weather was pleasantly cool and perfect for hashing.
This was a classy hash, partly following the Palladian Way – ‘an architectural trail’ no less. There were lovely Cotswold stone farmhouses and dry stone walls to enjoy. I was a bit disappointed though, when the trail followed the footpath left and didn’t take us up Trump Hill!
Through lovely Cotswold countryside, shared only with sheep with their lambs and horses. I don’t mind horses (if they keep their distance) or sheep, but I’d read about the bull encountered on the previous Bibury hash in October 2000 and was feeling a bit apprehensive…..
Anyway, On On through the peaceful countryside to the small village of Ablington. As lovely as the honey pot of Bibury, but much smaller and without the crowds.
As to the walkers, well we followed the crowds of Asian day trippers along the river and up the hill. We quickly left them, their cameras and face masks (what is that all about?) behind and headed off into the surrounding hillside.
At a certain point half way up a hill we ran into a fierce looking cow which had found her way out of the fields and onto our path. Now Paul seemed to know what to do, being a true country gent. He showed his experience with such beasts and calmly herded the cow back into the field where her mates were waiting. The other walkers, of course, all helped from a safe distance and cheered as the hero closed the gate to the cows’ field.
After that the rest of a very pleasant walk flashed by with tales of daring do.
The Catherine Wheel is a popular pub with drinkers and eaters, so after having queued at the busy bar, we took our drinks and cake into the garden for a very enjoyable Aprée.
The passing on of the shorts was postponed, because they were in Paul’s van, which was parked in the other side of the village and not at the Catherine Wheel. I suggest that he should award them to himself for courage shown in the face of the cow hazard.
Thank you Keith and Kay for a well laid trail and for showing us some of the secret, quieter places surrounding a well known and busy Cotswold village. Keith always encourages us to read previous mags, and I noticed that the mag of the first Bibury hash included a trail map. Well done for not cheating!