I remember us removing the H1 from standard events due to not very many people running them and wanting to reduce course setting workload. So we had H2-H4 (three hard courses which perhaps should have been renamed to Short, Medium and Long). I think three hard courses should be perfectly adequate for the small numbers we get at our local events. If the shorts are being set too long, make the setters set them shorter. Why have we now got to having events with H1-H5? Five hard courses. The dog chasing it's own tail is the analogy that comes to mind. Is this perhaps a symptom of being a slave to the SOL and Orienteer of the Year system instead of the SOL working for us?
Someone (not mentioning any names but his name is Don Young) decided we needed the H5 again so that he didn't get discouraged for the 2-3 events per year that he turns up to and as with any suggestions put forward by
Don the unnamed orienteer, they immediately get implemented.
The present H1 is equivalent to the old H2 so in theory the present H4 should be equivalent to the old H5.
The ‘old’ H5... Bring back A-F courses (and inkpad stamps under orange buckets!)
Looking at the event calendar for this year, it seems most standard events haven't got an H5. I'm in favour of having only three hard courses, basically by combining H1 and H2. At Edmund Rice College H1 was 8800 m and H2 was 7400 m, and both courses combined had less participants than H3 or H4. Would any of the participants in H1 or H2 really mind if there had been just one course of around 8000 m? I'd be happy with a bigger pool of people to compare with.
I'm always disappointed when I see an H1 much over 8km because I know it will mean a smaller field as some will drop to the H2. I would usually prefer to do less than 8km myself.
I do think we should cater for people wanting something less physical but wouldn't a short of 2-3kms do that, medium 4-5km and long 7-8km. Longer can be achieved by doing an extra course.
The course guidelines are that H5 should be at SOL but also should be considered where it is steep or more physical terrain. I've been reading them pre-setting at Jumbuck and I don't think any oldies should come to our event because I don't think we actually can provide a hard course that is not physical.
Oh come on, there's at LEAST two (maybe 3) boulders on that map that aren't halfway up a vertical hill.... :)
I've always figured that if people really want more courses, they can accept some compromises on originality - so the H2 might be the H1 minus a loop, the H5 might be the start and end of the H3, etc. Physicality is somewhat unavoidably defined by the map, and if people want to turn up to Jumbuck and whinge that they had to climb a hill then they need to take a long hard look at their choice of weekend activity. :)