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BIG MOUNTAIN - yet another new trail!
A motley crew of Happy Hashers piled into the local taxi fleet and headed off to #3 Tran Phu - a new starting point for Big Mountain, across the road from the prestigious Ganh Hoa waterside restaurant. What have Hares SamSon and The Gardener got in mind today, we wondered? We would soon find out.
The Gardener gave a Chalk Talk and then it was "On On!" up a steep flight of broken steps, followed by a stretch of rubble and finally past an old abandoned house before emerging onto a much better but still very steep track that kept going upwards to the roadside stalls on Vi Ba (the sealed road used by locals for daily exercise on Big Mountain).
It was here that the trail split, courtesy of wily Hares SamSon and The Gardener. Blue arrows showed the way towards the easier trail, and red the more difficult - which was steep, steep, steep. Whew!
But all trails eventually come to an end, no matter how tortuous, and so it was with this one - when some very relieved Hashers finally began a long descent via Vi Ba to the park on Front Beach for some well-earned refreshment.
Hare and this week's volunteer Hash Flash SamSon had been unavoidably detained and missed the start but, like the determined Hasher he is, made sure the eskies full of coldies were waiting in the park, along with Mountain Goat's famous and very welcome snacks!
There were several "tales to tell" from what had been an eventful day for many: one Hasher managed to get "temporarily" lost; Hard Drive was rumoured to have found his own trail; The Gardener impressed locals with "chin ups" in the park; Hashputin and Yoffi "faced off" but became as close to "mates" as any Hash pooches can ever be; one of two Hash Virgins, Jeff, reinjured his "tennis knee" but was still able to hobble as far as the park to join co-Virgin Pham at the Circle - and ever-present Falcon had been forced to miss the run entirely because of a sudden illness!
SamSon had not been able to take any photos along the trail because of his late start, so he made up for it by running his very first Circle (this is the same guy who volunteered for Hare duties after his first-ever run with VTH3 - a "true blue" Hasher, through and through!). He also snapped just about everything that moved in the park, so there's plenty of "apres run" coverage below (and Hot Dog has subsequently saved the day with some photos on the trail - a selfless act which has earned him a well-deserved listing as co-Hash Flash!).
And just to prove that Hash days don't always end at the Circle, a few of the more hardy Hashers visited the Lan Rung restaurant for OnOn and then, after even more grog, OnOnOn at Vitamin C and eventually base camp: Offshore Bar 1 - hence finally completing an intrepid "Circle" around most of the western side of Vung Tau peninsula, from OSB1 to OSB1 via Big Mountain peak and half the town!
Next Sunday's trail will be set in the Long Hai Mountains by Hares SamSon, The Gardener and Falcon - so be early for registration because only the first 29 are guaranteed a seat on the bus! As always, we'll meet in the Offshore Bar 1 beer garden at 2 pm for 2.30 pm start.
Hares: SamSon, The Gardener
Hash Flash: SamSon, Hot Dog