Run Report 1531: The Ship Inn, Langton Matravers

Not a Scooby Doo…….

Scribed by Hawkeye

Dorset has a reputation for being a quiet, somewhat sleepy county…..not when PH3 come to visit! The weather (like everywhere) was going to be stiflingly hot and so we packed plenty of fluids and our swimming costumes. Unfortunately the fluids were more suited to de- rather than re-hydration. Our start for the weekend was Langton Matravers a stone’s throw from Corfe Castle and Swanage but a sweaty 3 hour traffic beating drive from Guildford.

Arriving punctually were car 1: Virgil, Venus, Uphill Gill, Paul Newman, Wally & Sparkly; closely followed by car 2: Hawkeye, Robic, Tea Cosy, Dash, Violet, Georgia and Tori Girl. Driving like a bat out of hell on petrol vapours alone was car 3: Pis’t’man Pat, 12rena and Heavenly Blonde. The younglings set off with towels and factor 40 for Dancing Ledge – our appointed swimming rendezvous. The older but no wiser adults elected to run in 30o temperatures. Once everyone got suitably attired. Our hare Billy Graham was on hand – the other hare Scooby Doo was swimming. As was the current Mrs Billy Graham.

So the sea was about a mile away but the route went every which way but toward the sea. Or more intriguingly every time we had a chance to head seaward it was a falsie such that we managed to recross the ‘main’ road and head inland for quite some stretch where Wally and Tea Cosy tried their best Phil Drabble impressions on the local sheep. After a tip-toe through a campsite we hit a hill, a steep hill, a steep long hill. This had the same effect as a box of exlax chocolate on a Friesian cow – it spread us everywhere.

By now BG had fallen to the back to shepherd the stragglers. Meanwhile at the front the sawdust was as rare as rocking horse pooh so we ran on instinct alone. The front consisted on TC, 12, Robic and I and we headed down Seacombe Bottom in search of a swim as by now everyone was cooking nicely. I somehow managed to visit the wrong cove (the effects of heatstroke I think) but in due order we regrouped with the swimming party and scrambled down for a dip.

Cold is a far from adequate adjective to describe how bracing the sea was, but it certainly cooled us down. All but the most recalcitrant hasher overcame the cold and took the plunge and it only took 15 minutes to get the blood circulating in my fingers after I came out! But joking aside this is a magical spot for a swim.

Unfortunately we could not magic ourselves back up the huge hills that separate the sea from the pub and then there was the small matter of the remainder of Scooby’s trail. In recognition of the paucity of sawdust before the swim – the remainder was set with flour and our hare hung around briefly to set us off in the right direction. Robic returned with the young ‘uns and thankfully Virgil, Venus, Paul Newman and Uphill Gill had some local knowledge to help us through the stickier spots. We returned hot and bother again, but with a vivid memory of that refreshing interlude.

VERDICT: A lovely run albeit that we didn’t have a Scooby Doo where the trail went most of the time. The millpond calm sea had provided a stunning backdrop to another memorable run. Many thanks BG and SD –though to this day I have no idea what you did for so long and which left such little evidence of a trail?

IN THE PUB: There was a private party (wedding reception) going on in the pub when we returned, but it was 6pm! That being so I elected to hightail it back to BG’s to get the tent set up, but the remainder tarried for a cooling ale or lager. Lovely.

Leave a Reply