On this page you find
information for hares who want to know how to prepare a hash
You can easily download this document in
Guide for setting a mountain bike
B - Guide for setting a
mountain bike hash
prepared by Dirk Limann
in January 2003
The purpose of this guideline is to try to help the hare to
set rides to a certain M2BH standard.
Want to be a Hare?
Before you opt to be a Hare you should be either an
experienced Hash runner and hare, have done a couple of
Mountain bike Hashes and have read and understand the
guideline for cycling at a mountain bike hash
. You should know well the expectations of the Bashers.
As a first time hare seek the help of an experienced
Principals of a Bike Hash
In general avoid busy and paved roads. At least 95% of the
route must be rideable on the bike as opposed to pushing or
carrying the bike.
Plan the track in such a way to slow down the fast riders
and give opportunities for the slower ones to catch up with
The Two Rides
Due to different levels of capabilities, preferences and
expectations of hashers, two rides are normally set.
The Long/Rambo Ride covers approximately 25-30
km, in varied terrain with interesting river or swamp
crossings, steep hills, scaring down hills, difficult single
track, and speed section.
Ride time should be 2 to 4 hrs. depend on terrain and Hash
The Short/Scenic Ride, covers approximately
15-20 km, ride time should be 1-2 hrs. The terrain should be
as above but less arduous. Avoid excessive hill climbs,
dangerous descents or carrying of bike. Beginners and new
comers normally join this ride, so don’t scare them away.
The track is either on a different circuit or largely the
same as the long one with short cuts for the Short/Scenic
Ride. Mark the branch off with signboards or use paper of
differing shape or colour for each ride.
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First select if possible a virgin area that has not been
used yet by the Mountain Bike Hash. Also the location should
be chosen in a radius up to 50 km from Malacca. Since we are
Mountain Biker the terrain should be hilly.
Find one to three co-hares preferably familiar with the area
you wish to lay the ride. It is not advisable to do it
alone. To set a good ride you will need to reconnoitre the
area thoroughly, starting with the main tracks before
exploring the less or unused tracks. Anything from three to
five sessions until you are very familiar with the whole
Plan the ride to cover a wide area within the distance
limits. If it’s too tight especially at checks, there is a
possibility that bashers hit the in-trail again and
confusion will reign. Worst if they hit the back-trail at
the first checks, the entire Bash is screwed up. Remember
that despite logic, bashers will overrun the end of
“falsies” by up to 50 meters or more in the desperate hope
paper will magically re-appear. Also, when bashers fan out
from a check they can cover an area up to half a kilometre
Don’t worry about taking riders off the main tracks to
struggle up contours, wading through a river, but don’t
overdo it and although remember the “ridable” ethic. For
obvious reasons avoid crossing standing or stagnant water,
rubbish tips and planter’s gardens.
Make sure there is a reasonable parking area where
roads/tracks will not be blocked by basher’s parked cars. A
shady area is preferable.
Send your ride site directions to the Secretary/Trailmaster
two weeks before the ride. Remember that simple instructions
with trip-meter mileage work best. A direction map included
would be most helpful.
The Perfect Bash Trail
Plan the final track in such a way to slow down the fast
riders and give opportunities for the slower ones to catch
up with the pack. This can be archived by:
Overshooting. The paper track suddenly turns
away from the straight trail, which let the front riders
overshoot. It takes time until they have noticed that they
run off paper and have to return to the last paper seen.
Short cutting. At an overshoot or by
zigzagging the trail, there should be a possibility for
followers to short cut easily towards the new direction.
Looping. A loop should come back close to the
in-trail so that followers can see the front riders and
there must be an easy connecting path or better open terrain
to short cut to the on trail.
Paper. Use the paper sparsely. A long visible
trail of paper will not slow down the FROP’s. Place the
paper spots every 10 to 30m only (depend on visibility and
speed). Hide the paper a little bit. This will drastically
reduce the speed of the front riders. But if you want to
make sure that the Bashers follow a certain track or at long
grass and dense jungle you will need to lay more paper.
Long rides. Avoid very long rides on straight
estate roads or single tracks. This will only stretch the
pack without opportunity for the slower ones to catch up.
Checks are the most powerful tool to bring front and end at
the ride together again.
Plan five to six difficult checks on the long run with
change of direction, back checks, false trails and a loop
check. For the Scenic ride set two to three easy checks.
A check must have at least 3 to 5 opportunities for checking
a new trail. If you also consider rubber or palm oil lines
or contours it can take some time to break the check.
As compared to running the new paper trail should only start
in a distance of 100 to 300m. Consider that a biker can
cover a distance of 100m in a few seconds! But do not make
it to difficult otherwise the Bashers will get fed up and if
everybody has arrived already it is wasting of time.
Lay one or eventually two False-Trails with
paper starting about 100m from the check thus the checkers
will topple over it first. A false trail should last not
more than 100m of false paper. If practical mark the end of
the “falsie” with a paper cross, crossed branches, leaves
etc. Chalk can be used on tarmac surfaces. The true route
should then start approximately 200 to 300m from the check.
Use Back-Checks where bashers will have to go
back on their in-route to find the real trail. Alternatively
lay it up a dead end where they know they will have to back
Circular-Checks lead them round in a wide
circle (up to 500m in length) preferable a hill or other
obstacles. Then they’ll meet themselves coming round. This
can be an effective check to gather a large pack at mid to
three-quarter way of the whole ride.
Remember not to lay checks or “falsies” too close to where
bashers may find another part of the ride and end up going
the wrong direction or shortcut the course.
Meander the general direction of the in trail so that is not
possible to guess where the true track goes and where the
back trail is.
Do not indicate at the starting point the return trail
otherwise the last checks are overcome quickly. If the home
trail is along the road leading to the parking side lay the
paper only after the pack has left.
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After difficult passages or checks give longer stretches of
easy terrain to recover and enjoy cycling.
Plan checks and difficult passages for the first three
quarter of the ride. The last quarter should be an easy to
follow estate (main) road without checks. This enables the
fast riders to race and for the slower once to come back
comfortable and safely.
To work out such a Mountain Bike Hash ride, is a taxing
“To lay one single track on which the faster ones cycle more
km, the slower ones cycle less km and all are back at the
Bash Trail Paper
Use shredded paper or sliced up squares / triangles / strips
and different colors if you feel inclined. It is
biodegradable but only after some time. If your run is in a
popular hashing area make sure your paper is different from
all the other stuff on the ground.
Laying the Trail
To be safe, plan to lay the paper on the Saturday before the
run. There is a danger that it may get washed away by
overnight rain but it’s a lot quicker to freshen up a trail
on the Sunday morning than to lay it from scratch (unless
you start at 5:00am with a torch).
Do not under estimate the time required of laying the paper.
To lay paper for a 30-km and a separate 20-km ride can take
up to 8 hrs. Consider that on rough surface or at up and
down hills you need both hands on your handle bar. So you
have to stop every time to place the paper. The rest is one
arm riding all the way, which is very tiring. To shorten the
laying time, arrange that your co-hares lay the paper at
Be also aware that may be other Hash Chapters have used the
area just a few days ago and your nicely plant checks or
trail are Chris crossed with fresh paper. In this case you
have to pick up the “old” paper or worst, have to search for
a new trail and checks.
Get to the site early on the Sunday of the Bash, allow
yourself enough time to whiz round most of the run and make
sure the trail is intact.
Once the gathered masses have arrived you will need to give
them a briefing or at least tell them what kind of paper to
follow, point out any dangers etc. Let them know your hand
On the Bash
Make sure everyone goes off in the right direction. Decide
which one of your co-hares goes as tail sweeper on the long
and short trail. If you come to a check and the check has
not been broken for a wile, give a clue, but resist all
threats. Make sure that checks are closed (lay paper to join
the route) once they have been broken, slow riders coming up
behind will have a hard time finding the trail if not at
all. If a basher is struggling, give him / her a shortcut if
You are responsible to organize a search for missing persons
who have not signed out after the ride.
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