Tuesday's routine is usually the same, get home from work check out the hash venue, Fleur de Lis Stokenchurch nice not been there for a while, hare Ken, hum going to a Kenathon ah better pack some extra kit. Tent check; sleeping bag check; emergency rations check; flares check; oh hilly it's going to be hilly, now where do I put my crampons.
For a change I was able to make it on time for the start, namely because I didn't have to wait for Emmerdale to finish as Roz was being a hash tart (Sandra's description not mine) and having a liaison with the Didcot hash but I still managed missed the pre hash instructions just catching something about the long being 6 ! But as we all now by now a Kenathon is measured in Kenometers, the true distance of a Kenometer is known only to Ken and is a closely guarded secret but it is slowly being narrowed down to somewhere between 1.5 and 2.25 miles.
The on-on was called and the hash headed off towards the foot bridge over the M40 and an allotment that was once tended by Audrey. We were soon in open countryside and the first big descent through Langleygreen Plantation to the stunningly beautiful valley where Lower Vicar's Farm sits but as sure as night follows day if there's a Lower Vicar's Farm there's going to be an Upper Vicar's Farm and what an up and well worth the burning legs for the view. Next stop Cowleaze Wood which had pretty much taken us back to the same contour height as Stokenchurch and from where we could have had a level run back to the pub but where would be the fun in that, no onwards and downwards for intrepid hashers with the steep drop off the escarpment through Aston Rowant nature reserve to the Ridge way and the Oxfordshire flat lands. Having just descended 100m to get back on the right side of the M40 the 100m had to be regained to get atop Aston Hill, onwards and upwards for intrepid hashers and the last chance for some more stunning views before the light failed. Once back on top of the escarpment the rout followed the boundary of Aston Wood to the A40. A couple of hashers who either nursing injuries or plain to knackered to carry on headed straight back along the A40 to the pub. For those still able to put one foot in front of the other one last loop beckoned with a run out passed Gurdon's Farm and a sting in the tail with a ploughed field to run across.
Once again Kai put the rest of us to shame, particularly impressive this week as according to endomondo we clocked up 8.5 miles total ascent 1309ft total descent 1329ft, I'm sure one day we will be able to say we ran with Kai before he was an Olympic champion.
Thanks Ken for a beautiful Kenathon and a pile of chips to match Aston Hill.