Phnom Penh Hash House Harriers: Fwd: In the Spotlight – Nepal

Fwd: In the Spotlight – Nepal

In the Spotlight – Nepal
By Ed "Hazukashii" Howell
20 Feb 2020

Nepal is best known for Mt. Everest and the Himalayan Mountain Range, as well as being the home of Buddhism.  Surrounded by China and India, Nepal is a landlocked country of over 25 million people.  The capital city of Kathmandu has a population of ~2.5 million, and is home to the Himalayan H3.  According to their website, the Himalayan H3 was founded by Roger Binks, assisted by Keith Robinson, with the first trail taking place on 15 October 1979.  The first trail consisted of two hares (Binks & Robinson) and 6 runners from Canada, Australia, Sweden and the UK.  Starting out as a hard corps Men's only hash, "these runs continued on Monday evenings with the occasional Saturday special. About 1985 ladies broke in and it became the fast hash. This continued until the early 1990s when it faded out due to 'dreadful mismanagement'." 

The hash genealogy confirms that a second hash, the Himalayan Mixed H3 was founded on 19 March 1980, by John White. This new club ran on Thursday evenings, and the trails were less extreme.  After the demise of the Men's Hash, the Mixed group started running on Saturday, and still does to this day, as the Himalayan H3.  I recently had the extreme pleasure of running with the Himalayan H3, which took place on Monastery Road in the Kathmandu Valley.  The directions to the start took us through the southern side of the city, where the roads are a mixture of paved and dirt streets.  Heavy traffic combined with stop lights, circles, and policemen directing traffic, caused many a traffic jam.  It took just over an hour to make our way the 20 Kms, but the directions were superb, and brought us up a narrow single lane road to a dirt parking lot, that was surrounded by several monasteries. 

The start was overlooked by a large Buddha statue of the Dollu Monastery, which we eventually ran around on our way to the top of the mountain.  The trail on this day (~6.5 Kms) was shorter than what they usually run (8-12 Kms) according to the pack.  The shorter trail was slightly disappointing, because it was an awesome trail.  I describe an awesome trail as one you do not want to end, because it is so enjoyable . . . but eventually a hasher needs to stop, put on a dry shirt, and enjoy a nice cold beer.  So, after a long climb up the side of a mountain, followed by a long downhill loop back to the start, the gathered pack of about 20 settled in for a fun and entertaining circle. 

The national beer of Nepal is Ghorka Beer, and was actually pretty good, but I did not see any at the hash.  The cooler had Tiger, Heineken, and a couple other assorted brands, along with a few bottles of cider.  We honored the hares after the excellent trail, the usual assortment of mischief was also recognized, and in the end, for some odd reason, I received the honors of the Hashit.  The voting was rigged for sure, but I enjoyed my down-down out of the sacred mug.  The hashers of the Himalayan H3 are very welcoming and friendly.  After the festivities of the circle, about half the pack ventured back towards the city to enjoy a dinner of various local culinary delights including Buffalo, compressed rice, and other vegetable dishes.  With the sun setting, and the temperature dipping, I had to say goodbye.  No doubt, if you ever get the chance to visit Kathmandu, make sure to look up the Himalayan H3.     

For many more articles like this on the history of hashing, check out . . .

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