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Discussion: Navel deep water

in: Mr Wonderful; Mr Wonderful > 2017-12-10

Dec 12, 2017 2:42 AM # 
Glad I didn't find that one.
Dec 12, 2017 3:58 AM # 
Mr Wonderful:
At least two more besides me (Alex, Waldo) found it as well!

It was a reminder for me to think of every crazy thing your competitors might do, which is hard because at your desk or while scouting, you're not crazy.
Dec 12, 2017 5:14 PM # 
I was concerned with the amount of mostly frozen crossings. 10, 11, creaked and cracked but saw deer tracks and gave it a go, it was ok. Then 12, oh dear, can't cross the river with a rope and waist deep water (unless you're Voit!) I went the long way around. Then more vast open spaces of marsh generally frozen, but managed to avoid catastrophe finding deadfall and small patches of I guess what would be called land. Faceplanted across the field to 13, full header after tripping on something in the farmer's field. Very bitter wind across and then all the way back to 14. Which I come to the what is shown on the map as a trail crossing. Maybe in August in dead bone dry conditions. I saw someone else had already broken through. No bueno. I scanned left, I scanned right, no real signs of anywhere to cross via a downed log. I again see some deer tracks a few meters east of the break thru. Ok I'm going to give this a go. Three steps out and whoosh up to both knees. Instant panic, like for real, this might be serious. I hop back out quickly, and decide to try to follow dry land around to the right. I came to another section across from the flag of somewhat frozen marsh, and at this point had no choice to depart dry land and since I was already wet, I had to go for it just to even consider bailing and getting out back to the finish. Stopped and poured out the ice water from my waterproof shoes holding in all that goodness, as best I could. I ran the trail to 15 and my heels were starting to burn. I was seriously concerned about frostbite at this point. But the finish was within reach now, only a few very short controls. I managed the last 15 minutes or so, uncomfortable, but gradually the pain mostly subsided. I finished and my pants were frozen solid, like lumber frozen solid! This happen to me before at a December Chill, only that time I had to ride back on my bike to start finish about 5 miles, which I why I was so concerned this time. Anyways, I later heard there was a more manageable crossing to 14 to the west via a couple down logs that I just didn't see. I also then saw Voit and realized he had it worse than me, going in at the roped crossing, at near chest level. So while this particular crossing to 14, was likely my own poor judgement, which a long course and really cold weather affects judgement for sure, it really was set up for people to potentially get injured. I expressed my concerns to Alan. I'm sure when he set it, the concern about falling thru frozen ice was not realized. I'm glad no one got really injured that I know of, but from a club perspective that could have been an insurance inducing situation. And to clarify, I'm not mad, I had a great time, course was 95% fun. I was just certainly concerning being forced to cross semi frozen ground, or at least seemingly being forced to do so. I hope to go back for another event there, it's a fun park, but I can see it being very marshy.
Dec 12, 2017 5:55 PM # 
I wanted to email him last week, just to give heads up on maybe minimizing the number of marsh crossings but did not have time/was out of town/etc. Already on the first loop, had to go around quite a bit to avoid breaking the ice. #14#12 was ridiculous.
Dec 13, 2017 3:21 PM # 
Mr Wonderful:
I had been avoiding water earlier, since I knew I was sluggish and not going to win, so why be cold, but then I broke though enough spongy ground that it was game over anyway.

There were multiple ways to address the #12 thing - #11b, a new control that takes away the golden glowing trail from #11 to #12 with the crossing, tape off a no go zone, purple OOB printing, etc. I think it speaks to the benefit of more vetting since it's often hard to be critical of your own work - anyone who's read an email or facebook post from me will be well-aware of that!

I benefited from Steve and Angel pre checking Chilson, and I think Ken benefited from me seeing his courses and marking "Ken, if these are the locations, these are the swamps I'm going through", with drawn route lines, which led to Rick testing crossings and Ken tweaking some points. We have enough people who miss each other's meets, plus I doubt the Fishers would mind at least marking "here's what I'd do" for arm chair practice.

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