What an eclectic group of runners! If you live in Chiang Rai, do this. If you’re visiting, then plan your trip around a run date. Defined by charismatic, cooky/witty run leaders and a congenial, fun, relaxed group of old and young, the Chiang Rai Hash House Harriers should be a bucket list experience.
I was fortunate enough to be visiting during their annual Christmas Party Hash run, so it was especially exciting with all the perfectly wrapped (unusually) white elephant presents, beer and feast of food! The course circled around a beautiful country club, through farms, jungle, rabid dog homes (kidding, but not), rubber tree farms, heavenly gardens, and village wetlands. Greenery and the smell of nature everywhere to bring me back to my old cross-country running days. An inspiration to run more, oh yes.
Got the course clues mixed up for a while, so went a bit off track with my running buddy, but it’s always an adventure not knowing where the hell you are and attempting to follow some sham clues to find your way back to Finish like a contestant on Survivor scavenger hunt.
In case you know not of the Hash House Harriers, it’s an international club with the motto: A drinking club with a running problem. After the run, we no doubt drank through the night and bonded over newbie hazing. That is, all the newbies to the club, including me, were thrown up to the front and given beer to chug chug chug. Just as well, the running motto of the Chiang Rai HHH is: Start slowly and taper off. So much for gettting in shape…
Given my highest recommendation:
Have a good ol’ time!