I Can-T B ArX-se/’d It↑’S t00 FA1¾ŕ=°F öff. Location: somewhere in the Northern New Territories. Bride’s Pool, as it turns out. Why is it called Bride’s Pool? Drum roll… legend has it that a bride slipped and fell in a pool, of course… what else did you expect? Anyway apparently it all happened 100 years ago, as these things do, and a sedan chair was a mitigating factor. Dangerous things, sedan chairs, especially when it’s wet and slippery, and the peasants have been poorly maintained. But it wasn’t hard to imagine the folly of the daring bride’s journey, as on this particular Wednesday it was decidedly slippery underfoot too. Indeed the look on the face of our illustrious hare, the recently anointed Bukkake, told of the trials and tribulations he must have gone through setting the run! Poor Bukkake-san looked thoroughly spent, as if having come through a particularly harrowing ordeal. Or does he always look like that? Anyway he did mention slipping and going over on his full length somewhere. He wasn’t badly hurt, but as he explained, it did curtail his exertions on trail.
A horn sounds somewhere off to stage right, indicating the beginning of Act 1 Scene II. Picture the scene, a motorbike has just arrived followed by a green Jaguar. Indicating, as some wag comments, “that the owner suffers from erectile dysfunction”. Beer and ice and runners in various colourful garb, all in a whirlygig of activity. The first-time hare begins the briefing: “I have shortened it to 1.5 hours”. A sharp sucking in of breath accompanied by snorts of mirth and disbelief are heard in approximately equal measures. Finally the tense moment passes when Golden Balls asks with studied concern, yes but are there any amphibians? “Yes, there are,” is the authoritative answer, and that seems to satisfy. All the hashers nod and wink knowingly, even your scribe Crash Test Dummy, though he knows not why! And with the esoteric and apparently useless briefing over the pack is off.
A small gust of wind dislodges a leaf from a branch and lands silently in the Pat Sin Leng Forrest, a porcupine sloths off avoiding the trajectory of the downwardly fluttering flora, indicating the beginning of Act 1 Scene III. The first check is down at the Bride’s Pool barbecue place. There is a slim chance the ON is to the right back towards Plover Cove Reservoir, and all the smart money goes left except Liberace, who doesn’t. The next check at the bridge sees the pack scatter out, and there is a bit of calling till the ON is found up the nature trail towards Wu Kau Tang. No one bothers with the obvious falsie at Plover Cove Country Trail. You’d have to be RAVING MAD to go along there! The pack scatters again at the next check before the village, but presently it is solved by Eunuch. A left ON along Wu Kau Tang Road as it turns out. There is a wimp/rambo split at Chi Sum Road. The wimp trail winds through the village – where Golden Balls encounters an inquisitive bamboo snake – before returning to Wu Kau Tang Rd. The Rambo trail goes right through the village, and as might now be expected, up Wu Kau Tang Country Trail to a check with an obvious left up to the fire lookout. Note that going straight on takes one off into deepest darkest Plover Cove Country Park, and you’d have to be RAVING MAD to go in there! The fire lookout is a rather grandiose if smelly construction (there were quite a few cows milling around up there). I don’t think anyone really looks out for fires these days do they? I’m sure they have drones or spy satellites, where the fire officers can watch “bukkake” from the comfort of their armchair, rather than having to actually man a fire lookout. There are a couple of ways back down from this hill, one down to Wu Kau Tang Rd which is more overgrown, but fortunately the ON turns out to be the nice open trail down to Brides Pool Road. near the barbecue site. The trail goes left here to rejoin the wimps.
A hasher sees an arrow indicating a right turn, yet he chooses to go straight on, indicating the beginning of Act 2 Scene I for Liberace and Luk Dim Boon, and Act 1 Scene IV for everyone else. I guess being charitable, which I am not, the arrow could have been a bit more obvious if it had been drawn with a 90° angle symbol, but actually you’d have to be RAVING MAD to miss the trail entrance across the road! Now I don’t know what this little section of trail is called, I could call it “the trail that keeps on giving” – altitude that is. But I’ll elect to call it “the stairway to heaven trail”. Shortly before its zenith, I meet Golden Balls ploughing along in his new hash regalia, recently purchased from a renowned outdoors gentleman’s outfitter (Stanley Market). Suddenly the chorus of croaking amphibians gets louder. They’re all over the trail, which gets quite slippery here due to the muddy runoff from the north-dipping escarpment of fine siltstone along the Pat Sin Leng formation. Even after the stairway to heaven trail joins the Wilson Trail section 10, it continues quite treacherous along the flat. There are two ways down from stage 10 to Pat Sing Leng Nature Trail, the first left, or the second, where the King Of The Hills goes. They both join about 400m before the road, but fortunately it’s the first left and shorter option that has been chosen, then it’s ON home to the car park. Eunuch, Golden Balls, Catch Of The Day and your scribe all did the stairway to heaven / Wilson Trail loop. So congratulations to ourselves, and its bifocal glasses for Luk Dim Boon and Liberace. Velcro Lips and One Eyed Jack also finished, straight on home along the road, possibly intentionally, possibly not.
Its “summer rules” I am informed shortly before the circle. I vaguely remembered this was something to do with clothes, possibly it’s OK to go Full Monty in the circle I wondered, but my poor memory couldn’t pin it down. Apparently you’re supposed to stand around in the sweaty putrid clothes you’ve just run in for the entire circle. Bizarre bordering on cruel and unusual, if your shirt smells anything like mine after a summer run. Down downs were given by Velcro Lips around the hallowed light from Eunuch’s butt-plug shaped LED lantern. A magnificent run, by (I believe first-time) hare Bukkake. Very well marked, there were two blobs of flour after a check indicating you were ON, a good system, and between checks sufficient markings to let you know you’re still on trail, for when confidence is waning. Lovely route, taking in some very fine running trails, and everyone was home in the predicted 1.5 hours despite the slippery conditions. Well done the hare! – Crash Test Dummy