A Guide For Hares
A publication of the Pikes Peak Hash House Harriers and Harriettes

by ZiPpY tC, P2H4 On-Sec

Haring is the most important responsibility that can be entrusted to a hasher. It takes planning, insight, creativity, and yes, some panaché to lay an exciting trail and establish the conditions for a great ON-IN afterward.

This guide is written based on the traditions of the P2H4 and the many hard lessons learned over the past 12+ years of hashing in and around Colorado Springs. You might think that the detail contained this guide (4,000+ words) may seem to be a bit overboard (or even anal) for a group which essentially has no rules, but there's a good reason for it. Everything contained herein will help you, the hare, avert the known and avoidable pitfalls associated with haring. I've seen nearly every one of the things outlined in this guide go wrong at one time or another, either here or elsewhere (I've been to some 800 hashing events). Simply put, no hare should be condemned to repeat the mistakes of others. It is in this spirit that the P2H4 Guide For Hares is written.

Please read carefully before you hare the next time. In a feeble attempt at organization, this guide is divided into the following sections.


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The Schedule

  1. If you want to hare (and you should) you first need to coordinate with the Hare Raiser to get on the schedule. NIPS (aka Slug Sucker) is the P2H4 '00-'01 Hare Raiser. He can be contacted in person at the hash (he's the guy wearing the dirty yellow NIPS hat), by eMail at slugbust@aol.com, or by phone 719-260-9783.
  1. The schedule is usually filled six or more months in advance, so plan ahead to get the date you want (such as near your birthday for all you narcissistic types). You can check the online schedule to see which dates are available.
  1. A note for virgin (first time) hares: You must have a veteran co-hare! There's no substitute for experience - you can learn much from your grizzled old partner. If you don't arrange for a suitably experienced co-hare yourself, the Hare Raiser will appoint one for you.

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Planning the Hash

  1. The first thing you should establish is the type of hash. You have two choices, Dead Hare or Live Hare:

  1. The primary mode of hashing in the P2H4 is the Dead Hare where the entire trail is laid a few hours before the start of the hash. The Dead Hare provides the opportunity for people of all athletic abilities to lay trail and also allows time to construct a more elaborate system of checks.

  1. However, many people like live-hared trails because of the additional element of suspense wherein the hares might be caught. In a Live Hare environment, the hares are given a 15 minute head start and lay the trail in real time. They try to provide a good trail while at the same time avoid being caught by the hounds. If caught, the hare might briefly loose his/her pants and the catcher might become a co-hare from that point.

  1. This guide pertains to both Live and Dead haring. In the few instances where a major difference in the format exists it is labeled Live Hare :

  1. Probably the most difficult part of haring is arranging a suitable place for the ON-IN. This; however, is not an insurmountable problem and should not dissuade you from taking your turn as a P2H4 hare. Some thoughts follow:

  1. Plan where you want to end and then plan where you want to start. There are more starting places than ending places.

  2. Start fairly close (by auto) to the end. The fewer people you have to ferry back to the start, the better. Hares have gotten in trouble this way before.

  3. There should be enough parking space at the start for everyone expected to show up. Also, make sure that it's okay to park there. Hashers seem to get pissed off when they get back from the ON-IN and find that their cars have been towed. If there isn't sufficient parking space and you simply must use this location, you'll have to gather at another spot where parking is adequate and carpool or shuttle to the start. This adds a degree of complexity to the hash which isn't recommended under normal circumstances.

  4. While it might be warm enough to have a winter ON-IN outdoors, it's by no means guaranteed that the weather will cooperate. Therefore, you should plan arranging an indoor ON-IN site from mid-October through mid-April.

  1. If ending the hash at a public establishment (bar, tavern, pub, etc.), coordinate with the owner (or manager) well in advance.

    1. Ask for happy hour prices (lower if possible)
    2. Ask about food (free munchies, menu items)
    3. Let the Beermeister know that you won't need a keg.
    4. Let the bar management know we will go through one(+) keg of beer during our stay and that in addition to beer we'll need pitchers of water and soft drinks for our designated drivers (they just might provide complimentary soft drinks).
    5. Get approval for an area to do hash business. Using a tarp to cover the floor during down-downs is sometimes a wise move.
    6. Point out that we are a solemn, serious bunch that is never loud, rambunctious, or lewd. (And lawyers go to heaven.)
  1. The On-Before:
  1. The On-Before at a bar is traditional part of the P2H4 hash experience
  2. It's the hare's responsibility to:
  1. Find a suitable On-Before location. Make it as close to the start as practical.
  2. Coordinate with the bar management. Try to get special prices, but at the very least let them know that for an hour or so there'll be an additional 50 patrons above normal early Saturday afternoon business.
  1. Plan for bad weather. More than once we've ended on a hilltop during a thunderstorm without an alternative. Therefore:
  1. Have an alternate indoor location in mind.
  2. Think about shortcuts for really bad weather or even calling off a part of the trail when the weather's too bad.
  1. Theme hashes.
  1. While not required, themed hashes can be fun. Some traditional P2H4 theme hashes include: Mardi Gras, Red Dress, and Jingle Balls. For your hash, try to come up with something new and appropriate. Some examples: have hashers put on clothing left at checks, hide stuff around checks (scavenger hunt), well you get the idea, use your imagination.
  2. Caveat: If you encourage hashers to wear costumes then take them through costume shredding shiggy, they will revolt. Best costume hashes are in high visibility areas.
  3. Birthdays. Let's be frank, birthdays are not all that unusual, everyone has one a year. Therefore, you might want to consider a theme other than a celebration of yourself.
  4. Be sure to explain what's expected of the hounds at the chalk talk, or in the publicity if it entails costuming.
  1. Use the checklist for hares to make sure that you have all the bases covered.

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  1. Let the Beermeister know what kind of beer support you'll need. If you plan on having a beer check and the end is in your back yard, the beer requirement for him is far different than if there's no beer check and the end is at a public establishment.

  1. It's the hare's responsibility to contact the Beermeister, preferably a few weeks before the hash but certainly not later than one week before the hash. He'll need to know whether you need a keg (and where it should be delivered) and whether or not there'll be a beer check.

  2. Please be considerate of the Beermeister. He's got the worst (but most important) job in the hash. Don't force him to chase you down to find out what your beer needs are. The '00-'01 P2H4 Beermeister is Aqua Lungs. You can contact her via eMail at aqua@iex.net or by phone at 719-635-3355.

  1. If the ON-IN is at a bar, inform the Hash Cash at the start of the hash to arrange transfer of funds to pay for beer at the bar.

  2. You can swap dates with another hare but you must let the Hare Raiser know. This is not to obtain permission, but simply to keep the attending confusion to the minimum.

  3. Let the On-Sec know where the hash ends before the hash begins. He'll place the ON-IN information on the Hareline Phone Recording (719-576-0331) after the hash is well underway. This allows people who become lost on trail and those who miss the start to be able to find everyone at the ON-IN. The '99-Y2K P2H4 On-Sec is ZiPpY tC. You can contact him by eMail zippy@harrier.net or by phone 719-332-4586.

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Money Matters

Note: Capitalized, the term Hash Cash refers to the person who manages the financial resources of the P2H4. When written in lower case, hash cash represents the actual financial resources (i.e., the money).

  1. It's important that hares understand the use of hash cash and not unknowingly undertake expenditures which are not reimbursable. Specific guidelines follow:

  1. The Hash Cash collects $5.00 from each hasher per hash, with the exception that virgins (first time hashers) and hares do not pay. The reason hares do not pay is that they encounter expenses which hounds do not. Such expenses include: flour, chalk, and flyer creation/reproduction. So please do not seek special reimbursement for these incidental expences.

  2. Of the $5.00 collected from paying hashers, $4.00 is available to pay for beer, soft drinks, ice, and munchies. The other $1.00 is retained in the hash superfund for contingencies and emergencies (like special subsidized hash events).

  3. For each hash that does not end at a public establishment, the Hash Cash will fully reimburse the Beermeister for one keg of beer, the amount of canned beer consumed at the beer checks, plus soft drinks and ice. Any remaining money (up the the $4.00 per paid hasher level) can be used to pay for munchies (chips and dips and the like).

  4. For hashes which end at a public establishment, the Hash Cash will provide the hare $4.00 per person who actually paid. Example: There are 48 people at the hash including 5 virgins and 3 hares. The Hash Cash will provide the hares $160 (40 paid hashers times $4) to spend at the bar.

  1. The hash will not pay for unlimited beer. It is up to the hare to negotiate reasonable prices and to make financial settlement with the establishment. Please don't forget to figure in the serving staff's gratuity.

  2. Once the hash cash is exhausted, the hares can buy additional beer at their personal expense, or "pass the hat" for donations to keep the beer flowing.

  1. About food: The hash cash is used primarily to buy beer and soft drinks. If sufficient funds exist within the $4.00 per paid hasher constraint, hash cash can be used to pay for munchies. If more elaborate fare is desired, it is strictly at the hares' discretion and expense.

  2. About "good" beer: To stretch the hash cash as far as possible, the Beermeister's selection of beer is rather pedestrian (read cheap). If the hares wish, they may of course supply higher quality (homebrew, microbrew, commercial premium) beer themselves. However, reimbursement will only be at the rate of an equivalent amount of our normal cheap beer. Example: If the hares buy a keg of Fat Tire Ale for $110, the Hash Cash will only reimburse them whatever's the going price of a keg of Busch (around $50.00 at present).

  3. If you have questions, contact the Hash Cash. The '00-'01 P2H4 Hash Cash is Grit in Her Slit. You can contact her by eMail grit_P2H4@yahoo.com or by phone 719-264-6045.

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  1. It's a good idea to create a flyer and and pass out copies at the hash immediately preceding yours. You can be creative as you wish with the design of the flyer as long as the elements essential information are included. Please include:
  1. WHAT: (P2H4 Hash #???)
  2. WHEN: (Saturday, Month, Day, Year, @2:00 pm)
  3. WHERE:
  4. HARES:
  5. THEME: (If any)
  6. TRAIL: Length: xxxxxxx, Difficulty: xxxxxxx
  9. BRING: $5.00, a whistle, and a shagbag
  10. DIRECTIONS: (Contact Zippy, he has a library of canned directions to most everywhere in the Springs area)
  1. If you have internet access, post the start information onto the Colorado HHH eMail List < ColoradoH3@yahoogroups.com >. Include the following (it might look familiar from the above):
  1. WHAT: (P2H4 Hash #???)
  2. WHEN: (Saturday, Month, Day, Year, @2:00 pm)
  3. WHERE:
  4. HARES:
  5. THEME: (If any)
  6. TRAIL: Length: xxxxxxx, Difficulty: xxxxxxx
  9. BRING: $5.00, a whistle, and a shagbag
  10. DIRECTIONS: (Contact Zippy, he has a library of canned directions to most everywhere in the Springs area)
  1. If you have any trouble posting the message, or don't have internet access, contact the On-Sec and he'll take care of posting the message and also place the information on the Hareline Phone Recording (719-576-0331) at the appropriate time. The '00-'01 P2H4 On-Sec is ZiPpY tC. You can contact him by eMail zippy@harrier.net or by phone 719-332-4586.

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Planning the Trail

  1. Scout your trail early and often. This means actually running and/or walking the trail several times to get a good feel of its viability in terms of length, difficulty (shiggy), and opportunities for pleasant surprises. You can't scout a good trail from a car or off a topographic map, but both can be useful support items.
  1. Trail should normally be in the 3 to 5 mile range but certainly never more than 6 miles or so. Evaluate your trail in terms of length and rate it in difficulty as indicated below.
Length Description   Difficulty Description
3-4 miles Short   Little or no shiggy, flat or only a few small hills Easy
4-5 miles Medium   Some shiggy, some hills Moderate
Over 5 miles Long   Much shiggy, much vertical work and/or high altitude Difficult

Once you've evaluated the trail, use the descriptions above for use in the publicity campaign for your hash. This is a simple courtesy to give the hounds some idea of what they're up against and can serve to head off later complaints about the trail.

  1. Plan for a shag vehicle to get baggage to the end and on cold (or rainy) days, to the beer check. If you need help, enlist the assistance of a auto hasher (e.g., ZiPpY tC).
  1. Don't cross private land without permission.
  1. Safety: Remember that not everyone is a rock climber. Avoid the truly dangerous stuff. Examples include, but are not limited to: culverts in thunderstorm season (May-September), the railyard just West of downtown, and any crossing of I-25 at street level.
  1. Turkey trails are supposed to be easy, not just easier.
  1. Use trails (even deer trails) to avoid damage to slopes, etc.
  1. Include a beer check or regroup to permit the less athletic (and the lost) time to catch up to the pack.
  1. Beer check:
  1. Plan the logistics of the beer check carefully. You'll need to get the beer there before the FRBs arrive and clean up the area after everyone leaves. It should be a place where the hashers can enjoy a beer without getting harassed. Avoid places where a group of 40-50 people drinking will draw undue attention. Out of sight under a bridge usually works fairly well.
  1. You can also stash the beer, in a cooler or whatever (i.e., an unmanned beer check). If you do this, please leave a trash bag for the empties and don't forget to return and pick it up after the hash.
  1. Water:
  1. Always have sufficient drinking water available at the beer check.
  2. While it's an individual responsibility to prevent one's own dehydration (that is to carry a water bottle on trail), there should be little or no extra effort to provide water at the beer check. Hashers will use this water to both drink and to refill their water bottles.
  3. Many people prefer water on the trail and defer their beer drinking until the ON-IN. Others will enjoy a drink of water and a brew.
  4. If you say it's a dog friendly trail, you should provide enough water for both people and dogs.
  5. If you provide water in bulk, also provide a means for people and animals to drink it. This mean plastic or paper cups.
  1. Live Hare : In the opinion of some, a beer check on a live hared trail is considered an unethical means to avoid getting caught. Nevertheless, it is a perfectly acceptable tactic in the P2H4.
  1. Again, If you need help, enlist the assistance of a auto hasher (e.g., ZiPpY tC).
  1. Be creative. You're not catering to any special interest group, especially the competitive runners.
  1. Don't' use the hash to demonstrate your superb physical fitness. The point of the hash is for both hares and hounds to have fun. As a hound, getting your dick knocked into the dirt simply isn't fun, no matter how amused it the hare is about it all.
  1. Dogs: While the P2H4 certainly isn't a kennel club, a few hashers want to bring their pets to the hash. This practice is neither encouraged nor discouraged. Therefore, it's the hare's responsibility to assess the trail and ON-IN as to whether or not it's "dog friendly" and include the information in the publicity release. Normally, an ON-IN at a public establishment is unsuitable for dogs and there are certain trail characteristics make the presence of dogs impractical (e.g., trails which go through structures such as malls and hotels, water crossings more than knee deep, or transport in the manner of busses or U-Haul vans).
  1. Logistics: Hash day logistics are quite frankly a pain in the ass, but essential to a successful event. The hare has many logistical responsibilities which if not carefully planned for can detract from the ability to lay the trail or result in delays and dry spells at the ON-IN. That the shag wagon, beer check, ice, keg, etc. are the responsibility of the hare, it does not mean that the hare must do everything him/herself. It is perfectly acceptable to enlist the assistance of others to take care of logistical matters. Assistants can come in the form of auto hashers, or even non-hashers, it really doesn't matter. What does matter is that the beer is flowing at the ON-IN when the Front Running Bastards (FRBs) arrive and that the shag wagon is nearby and accessible.
  1. Three important things to not to loose sight of:
  1. Actual weather conditions on the day of your hash can wreck havoc with the best laid plans.
  2. Once the hash starts, it's no longer in your control.
  3. Every hare has a trail that will not work.

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Laying the Trail

  1. Before laying the trail, make sure that both you and your hare partner(s) are all using the same marking conventions. Otherwise you just may confuse the hounds, get them lost and into an ugly mood. See the associated Guide to P2H4 Trail Marks.
  1. Don't screw with the pack by making the trail difficult to find; screw with the pack by where the trail goes. It's far better to lay a trail that's easy to find and a son of a bitch to traverse, than vice-versa.
  1. Assigning segments of the trail to different hares to lay independently is a sure recipe for disaster. The only guaranteed way to ensure a coherent trail is for all hares to lay the trail together.
  1. Trail Marks:
  1. Use lots of flour. Use lots of flour. This can't be emphasized enough.
  2. Ideally, hounds should be able to see the next mark from the last.
  3. Hash marks should be placed about 25 yards or so apart. Marks should never be more than 50 yards apart
  4. When bushwhacking, make marks very close together.
  5. Consider alternate marking when bushwhacking, such as surveyor/engineer tape or toilet paper.
  6. Mark your trail with environmentally friendly substances. That means no spray paint and remember that after the hash you must remove anything you used that the rain won't easily eradicate (e.g., surveyor/engineer tape).
  7. Sidewalk chalk is great, but only when it isn't raining.
  8. Don't get too clever with your marking medium. Animals just might find certain things irresistible (like Froot Loops) and eat your marks.
  9. Also see the associated Guide to Hash Marks.
  1. If you change direction, mark the change with either a check or a hare arrow. There is no requirement to lay false trails from a check, but there must be a true trail.
  1. End your false trails with a false trail mark, especially for pre-laid trails where a "blow job" (false trail without a false trail mark) make little sense.
  1. Three flour marks after a check means true trail. After three hash marks it is not Kosher to lay a false trail mark. A check (which may include false trails) on the other hand is quite appropriate.
  1. Checks keep packs together and Front Running Bastards (FRBs) confused. Ideally, the Dead Fu*king Last (DFLs) should reach the beer-check & On-In within 5 minutes or so of the FRB's. If the slower hashers say the hash was a cake-walk while the FRB's ran their ass off, you've done a great job. On the other hand, too many checks can be quite annoying. In this matter, trail laying is more of an art than a science. Unfortunately, you it can only learn the proper balance from experience, both as hare and hound.
  1. Inclement weather tips:
  1. Rain:
  1. Lay your hash marks in larger than normal piles. Avoid gutters where flour is sure to get washed away.
  2. Try and find places to lay it where it won't get wet, if possible.
  3. Flour will stay around better if you lay it in clumps rather than just throwing it on the ground. If you squeeze the clump and set it down it will hold together better.
  4. In rain, flour sticks to wood (trees, fences) better than grass, smooth surfaces or sidewalks.
  5. You really need to use a lot of flour on a wet hash because some your marks are going to get washed away no matter how good of job you do laying it.
  6. Be extra careful when laying critical marks (checks, arrows, etc.) because hounds have a hell of a time figuring out what to do in the absence of trail marks.
  7. Don't bother with chalk as it always gets washed away in the rain.
  8. If rains after you've laid your trail, you really should recheck it before the hash starts.
  1. Snow:
  1. Color your flour. Carpenter's snap line powered chalk works well, just be sure to use enough chalk to achieve a distinctly bold color. Lightly colored flour tends to blend with the snow, making hash marks difficult, if not impossible to see.
  2. Hashing in deep snow takes lots of physical effort and your trail should take this fact into account and not be too long.
  3. If there's a blizzard and the Governor has declared an emergency and it's illegal to drive on any public street (like in October 1997), there will be no hash. This is the only exception to our scheduling philosophy of "every other Saturday, regardless of weather, at 2:00 pm, year-round."
  1. Live Hare :
  1. Not getting caught is a matter of cleverness (and luck), not speed.
  2. Don't double back; you're bound to run into a short cutting bastart (SCB).
  3. Don't worry TOO much about blow jobs.
  4. Do everything you can to screw up the SCBs. Most live hares are caught by SCBs, not from FRBs.
  5. Screw the SCBs.

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Starting the Hash

  1. Give a chalk talk before the hash. This is to aquatint the new boots with hashing in general and to apprise the old hands of the new twists you've introduced to confound them on the trail.
  1. Point out the direction of the trail if the pack can't find it themselves in short order.
  1. Live Hare :
  1. Make it clear that you get a 15-minute head start.
  2. Enlist a known auto hasher as co-conspirator. (S)he can:
  1. Act as the "honest broker" timkeeper.
  2. Give the chalk talk (write out the briefing for them).
  3. Lead in singing Father Abraham (anything to asist in providing your full 15 minute headstart)
  4. Drive the shag vehicle
  5. Facilitate the beer check, if there is one. Just be sure to give your assistant good directions.

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  1. Hare responsibilities include:

  1. Getting the shag vehicle to the ON-IN site.
  2. All logistics involved with beer, soft drinks, ice, water, munchies, etc.
  3. Dealing with the property owner (both public establishment and private property) in all matters financial and diplomatic.
  4. In public establishments setting aside sufficient beer for the down-downs.
  5. Returning people to the start to retrieve their cars.
  6. Cleaning up the ON-IN venue after the festivities.
  7. Establishing a Lost & Found for the the inevitable misplaced items of personal property.
  1. Hare responsibilities do not include the actual conduct of hash business. This is the sole purview of the Hash Mismanagement.

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Parting Words

Don't worry about trying to lay the perfect trail - there really isn't such thing. Something unforeseen will normally, generally, usually go wrong. Just try your best and your hash will be a success. Accept your down-down with humility. And don't forget to coordinate with the Beermeister!

ZiPpY tC

PS - Thanks to NIPS, Damn Little, and Smutt Mutt (DFW) for their assistance in creating this guide.

Last Updated at 03:40 on Monday, February 12, 2001

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