Setting Trail


The Easy Bit. 

Just see the Trail Master and tell them you wish to Hare a run.  The Trail Master should be able to give you a list of available dates.  If you have a certain date in mind and it is already taken, you may be able to negotiate a date swap with the nominated hares.


Hounds should enjoy the trail – give them interesting terrain.  The use of scrub, bush, alley ways, secluded pathways etc. provide a far more interesting Trail rather than a run around the block on suburban bitumen streets.

Keep the pack together or at least relatively close together during the run.  This is achieved by judicial use of checks, check backs, Re Groups, loops and cunning Trail setting.


The idea of the Recce is to locate and identify areas that would contribute to an interesting Trail.   Local knowledge of a particular area can also be invaluable.

HINT:   Use an app like ‘Map My Run’ or ‘Footpath’ to map out your run and give an indication of Run Length.

RUN LENGTH  should be such that the pack is back home after about an hour.  And the whole of the pack should be home not more than 15 minutes after the first runner/walker arrives.  5km is about right provided the hounds are not slowed by obstacles. 


PARKS:    When choosing a park as the venue, check it out at the time Hash will be there.  Is there sufficient light?  Are toilet facilities available?  Is there sufficient bench space/seating for NOSH?   Is there shelter should it rain?

HINT:  Request the Hash Lights anyway as extra light is always a bonus.

HOTELS:     Most hotels are happy to have the extra custom on a week night.  However please ensure:

-   The meals available are cheap and reasonable. 

-   There is a quiet area, away from usual patrons, to hold the circle.

HOMES:   If you are going to host HASH from your residence, it is a good idea to warn your neighbours about the event and what they can expect.

At all venues, it is the responsibility of the Hares to tidy up after the ON ON.


It is the responsibility of the Hares to provide their own chalk, flour and paper to mark Trail.

All markings are to be biodegradable.  All non-degradable markings (ribbon etc.) should be removed by the Hares after the run is completed.  Paint is not suitable for marking Trail.

-   For hard surfaces, use industrial chalk.  Gyprock is an industrial chalk widely used in wall boards and offcuts can usually be obtained for free from bins at housing construction sites.

-   Flour is often used on surfaces that are unsuitable for chalk e.g. on dirt ground.  Use no less than a teaspoon per mark.  Alternately, a tin with nail holes in the bottom filled with flour will release a pattern of flour when dobbed on the ground, but will not drop flour otherwise.

-   Toilet paper is useful for marking in grass or on trees where the paper can be wrapped around branches or other parts of vegetation.

SETTING TRAIL    ****There can never be too many arrows on a Trail.****

The START should be very clearly marked in an obvious place at the venue so that late runners are given a chance to quickly find the Trail. 

It is essential to use lots of markings - chalk/arrows/flour/paper. There can never be too many arrows on a Trail.

NEVER try to hide the markings.  Hash is not about searching for every arrow, it is about following Trail.  Let the Trail lead the pack astray with the use of check backs, False Trails and Loops.

A poorly laid Trail with few arrows will almost certainly result in the pack losing Trail and becoming scattered.   Nothing is worse than to have the pack loose Trail and miss out on a great run and for the Hare’s efforts to have all been in vain.   Disappointing on both sides.


a.   Arrows should be set on the footpath or the right hand side of the road for safety, but whichever side you start with, be consistent and don’t switch from side to side unless you clearly mark it.

b.   Arrows should be under street lights, but in any event, not more than 50 metres apart.

c.   When setting a Trail through bush, there should be flour and/or paper at the very least, every 20 or so metres.

d.   When setting a Trail across broad spaces, the direction of the Trail should be clearly indicated by using long lines of either flour or paper.

e.   If running across, through or along creeks, swamps, sewers etc., always be conscious of the tidal effect on the Trail you set.

f.    Don’t put an arrow where it may be rubbed out by traffic or parked over.


Checks on the Trail indicate a change of direction.  This may be in any one of several directions.  The most common checks are; a Two Way Check, a Three Way Check, and a 360 Check.  There is no limit to the number of directions from a Check.  

a.   Should an arrow be placed away from the Check, in a direction which is NOT the Trail, an “F.T.” (False Trail) MUST be marked after NO MORE THAN two arrows along that direction.  As a general guide an “F.T.” should not be further from the check than 75m.

b.  A 360 Check is marked with a circle and is generally used at a complex intersection.  The 360 Check indicates that the Trail may continue in ANY possible direction.   False Trails are generally not set from a 360 and runners/walkers should call ON ON once arrows are sighted.  Hares should NOT use 360s as a convenient way of setting Checks to avoid having to set False Trails.

c.  The correct Trail MUST be indicated by DOUBLE ARROWS set after the first one or two single arrows, but no further than 75m from the check.

d.  DOUBLE ARROWS should be used sparingly and they ALWAYS INDICATE TO HOUNDS THAT THEY ARE ON CORRECT TRAIL. Once the correct Trail has been indicated in this way, Hares should revert to using single arrows. 

e.  NEVER use double arrows on False Trails and the pack should NEVER have to run back over double arrows.  Once the correct Trail is found, one of the front runners marks off the arrows that lead to False Trails at the Check.

f.   Try not to put a False Trail in the direction of Home as this will encourage S.C.B.’s.

There is nothing more heartening for a Hare to be told at the end of the run that he caught the whole Pack plenty of times with False Trails.


The CHECK BACK is a very useful check available to the Hare for catching the Front Runners/Walkers and keeping the pack together. The Trail (marked in single arrows) simply encounters a Check Back, marked “CB” and the Front Runners/Walkers must RETURN TO THE LAST INTERSECTION (no more than 75m back) and seek the DOUBLE ARROWS indicating the True Trail. 

a.  When a CHECK BACK has been used, the Hare should mark True Trail with double arrows, not more than 10 metres from the intersection that the pack would return to on encountering the CHECK BACK.

b.  Front runners/walkers should mark Trail at the intersection where True Trail is found.  This helps in keeping the pack together as it saves those following from running to the CHECK BACK.

-   NOTE the difference between “FT” and “CB”

§   At an “FT” runners/walkers must return to the Check to find correct Trail

§   At a “CB” there is no defined point to return to, runners/walkers return to the last intersection to find correct Trail.  True Trail should be located no more than two arrows back from the Check Back.


The LOOP is a very useful tactic for keeping the Pack together and is implemented without any special markings. 

a.  Setting the Trail around a block or around the perimeter of a park, will have the obvious result at the end of the Loop of having back runners quite close to the front runners. 

b.  Setting Trail up one side of the road (this works best on a wide road) and then cross the pack over and bring them back the other side of the road is also an effective Loop.


The RE-GROUP is great for getting the pack back together.  It is done by marking a large circle with the large letters “R.G.” in the middle.  Hounds arriving at the Re-Group are to wait for the rest of the pack to arrive before setting off again. Re-Groups also provide a chance for social interaction at sometimes interesting locations. e.g. outside police stations.

a.  A Re-Group is a very good idea at the end of a section of Trail that may spread the pack, for example, at the end of a stretch of bush or at the tops of hills.

b.  A HASH SONG may be incorporated at a Re-Group. The Hare should mark “SONG” in the marked circle under “RG”. 

c.  Re-Groups should not be over used.  A sprint from one Re-Group to another is not a Hash run.