Stowford Cross - Spockybitz - 17th January 2016

Mud, I think everyone was expecting mud.  And even the road up to Stowford Cross was pretty shiggy.  The "car park" was worse, and I totally expected somebody to get stuck.  I was partciularly worried about my undercarriage, you see, its hung particularly low. We had another 30+ pack, with Tampa and Woodpecker almost arriving on time.  Spocky, our hare, explained that the first part of the trail was three-and-on, but the second part was one-and-on, becuase he'd only gor round half the trail by 10.35 this morning.
A bit of a loop for the r*nners to kick off the trail, rejoining the walkers along the edge of woods.  The a long-short and loop up around the trees and through the undergrowth - a first of many, many loops that were to follow.  Then the trail continued, and we were soon on the second long, and an extreme climb to catch up with the shorts.  Followed by a drop, and another climb up to the regroup.  But this wasn't the sweetie stop, this was still to come.  Instead a short breather before heading steeply down (what a surprise) along a mountain bike track, before - you guessed it - another long-short split, with the longs taking us back up to the regroup.
A bit of a run followed across the top of the common, before yet another split, and the sweetie stop near a stream, where we bumped into the Grand Mistress of Otter Valley H3.  The second part of the trail was shorter, and a bit less complex that the first.  There was a long, long-split up towards the firing range, then following the shorts, down through some pretty dense undergrowth, towards the road.  A fish-hook welcomed most of the walkers towards the end, but most seemed to ignore it, and were fined appropriately in the circle.
Thanks to Spocky for one of the top 3 trails of the year!  Fines also went to Stingray for falling over twice, and Wobbly and me for boring talk about tax.  Woodpecker moaned because there weren't enough beers... maybe those who had two felt a bit guilty!!  I'll buy more next time.
Rate the Hash is back again for 2016 so don't forget to award you scores - click here. Don't forget that subs are now due - see here. Next week we're just a couple of miles away, at Woodbury Castle (west-side) - click here for a map.


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