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Training Log: jennycas

In the last 7 days:

activity # timemileskm+m
  running2 2:02:00
  orienteering2 1:39:14
  riding1 1:30:00
  Total5 5:11:14

Sunday Oct 21 #

6 PM

riding 1:30:00 [3]

Still feeling a bit flat this morning (but Susanne's rather more unwell and having to deal with sniffly kidlets, although at least none of the rest of us got Lachlan's 24-hr gastro problems last week) so after both cabins were packed up we all breakfasted at the botanic gardens and then G&I headed for the airport. I managed not to confuse my ASMG backpack with anyone else's on the plane! 'Twas a fine spring afternoon when we got home so I went for a ride to the real beach - lots of people out enjoying the sunshine at Glenelg.

Seems weird to be back in such a big city as Adelaide, rather than a town of which you can see the entirety from the summit of Anzac Hill. Alice is definitely a place which grows on you and I really enjoyed my time there with parents in 2016 also. And now I understand why so many people go there for the Alice Springs Masters Games. We got pretty good value for our $70 Games fee: opening and closing ceremony concerts both with fireworks, complimentary backpack of course, with monogrammed hat & towel, 4-colour pen and stubbie holder. Plus there were the free uniforms for sports coordinators, ambassadors and volunteers (we concluded that the op-shops had to reduce their hours because all their regular vollies were busy with the Games), shuttle buses to take athletes to venues, signage for all sports' venues, podiums being brought to venues etc etc. The NT Govt must pour quite a put of tourism money into the ASMG, because I somehow doubt that the local council gets that much in rates from a population of less than 30, 000.

Saturday Oct 20 #


Had come here with the intention of doing the Ormiston Pound walk early this morning but knees didn't enjoy all the rockhopping yesterday, so instead G & I did the shorter Ghost Gum walk up to the lookout and back down along the creek, admiring the red glow of the morning sun on the gorge walls and grateful for the lack of bikinis on the beach this morning.

After breakfast (watching spinifex pigeons all around the campsite, and even a spotted bower-bird although I couldn't spot his bower) we drove further west on the now-sealed loop around to Hermannsburg and our curiosity was piqued by information signs saying that Gosse Bluff is not just a range of hills but an enormous crater caused by a comet crashing into Earth 142 million years ago - or alternately, by an aboriginal baby crashing to earth during Dreamtime, and its parents the morning and evening star are still looking for it - so yeah, that was a worthwhile detour because you can drive right into the centre of the 5km crater and walk up to a lookout completely encircled by hills in a 20km ring.

Made it back to the big smoke in time for the birthday boy to go to the Road Transport Hall Of Fame, AKA where trucks go to die. Let's just say he found it more interesting than I did! Early dinner at the Italian restaurant was finished in time to be watching the sunset from Anzac Hill for our last night in Alice :)

Friday Oct 19 #

7 AM

running 52:00 [3]
shoes: Asics Nimbus 19

From the caravan park (@Gillen/Araluen) over to and up Anzac Hill, south along Todd River to the botanic gardens, then back across town - getting warm but still cloudy even when G & I breakfasted in and walked around the gardens afterwards.

After a few false starts trying to find methylated spirits for the Trangia, we headed out to the West Macdonnell Ranges and set up camp at Ormiston Gorge, before driving further west to Redbank Gorge, which short walk although highly rated was a bit disappointing because most of the pools along the creek bed have dried up and while the narrow slot at Redbank itself is apparently great fun to li-lo through, there's not much of a swimming hole in front of the cleft. We did see people walking there in hope with an inflatable ring, although Ormiston is definitely the better/more popular waterhole to be; even though it too is a bit algal at this time of year, there's seriously a beach - populated by bikinis galore and even an inflatable flamingo.

On the way back we stopped at Glen Helen, walked to the waterhole, then had a drink/ice cream at the 'resort's outdoor bar watching the setting sun turn the cliffs red, then resisted the temptation to pay for dinner there and went back to camp for Trangiapasta and attempted to sleep in a very hot tent.

Wednesday Oct 17 #

8 AM

orienteering race (ASMG Telegraph Station) 58:04 [4]
shoes: Asics GT-2000

60 minute score, starting @0730 before it got too hot. Everyone headed for straight for the rocky knoll just near the car park and I had to wait in the queue to punch. Stopped to hang one flag back up, and made a couple of small overshoots on controls (something about a 1: 6 000 map) but got through the northern - more open - half of the course in less than half an hour and started to get excited, thinking that maybe I could get them all inside the time limit. Was a bit inaccurate heading up a rocky hillside looking for a rockface beyond some bare rock, when suddenly Susanne appeared out of nowhere and I couldn't get away from her over the next few controls!

We'd take different routes then converge on the control; I could run faster where it was open but she could mountain-goat lightfootedly through the rocky stuff while I was rather too tentative. Every time I pulled away, I'd turn around to see her coming up behind me...and then I made a massive mistake with only 2 controls to go. The last couple were just over the other side of the Todd River, and I needed to head just soouth of east out of the hills, but couldn't seem to stick to my bearing, got dragged SE by a creekline which I really should have crossed, and ended up hitting the 'river' about 300m south of where I should have been :(

So the race was lost, but to add insult to injury I then couldn't find the next control I was looking for. A flat slab of concrete in long grass, just north of a creek junction or so the map said, but it definitely wasn't right there and after a couple of min I started to get worried about being late back so cut my losses, feeling rather sad (in Eleanor-speak). A restorative iced coffee from the Telegraph station refreshed me enough to go control collecting (S&L and I tag-teamed with minding the kidlets) whereupon I discovered that the control feature was actually about 30m north of where it's mapped and on the opposite side of a clump of trees which I'd never looked beyond. Oh well, should have been thinking like a Territorian.
7 PM

orienteering race (ASMG night O) 41:10 [4]
shoes: Asics GT-2000

I'm not good with score events or with night O so juxtaposing them is generally a bad idea, and the familial cold's finally settled on me after 2 days of saw froat so my head was fairly spaced out, but OTOH Uncle Geoffrey (who flew in @midday) was available for kid-wrangling, so Susanne & Lachlan & I could all run on Manu's brand new map of the Alice Springs Golf Course :)

Start was @the golf club, and I ruled out going to a nearby control first because I thought the fence behind it was impassable, so from the start my route was suboptimal because I'd have to double back for it later on. Ran as hard as I could though, and was around quite a few guys even after I'd mistaken negative contours for a low sandhill and in fact climbed a bigger hill unnecessarily when I should have been looking in a basin, and compounded the error by thinking that the blue filled-in circle which the control was on would be a tank when in fact it's a pond...

Anyway, that was a small issue compared to what I did later on - with only 2 controls to go and needing to head west to a drainage channel, managed instead to read that I was still at my previous control and headed south instead, hitting a fence, being unable to find it on the map because it was just off the bottom edge of the mapped area (Manu, don't laugh, yes I did run off your map!) and spent 5 minutes in no-man's land, getting confused because the building lights I could see to the west didn't seem to be those of the Doubletree Hilton (in fact I was as far south as the casino - oops) and getting a bit freaked out by a 4WD driving around among the mullock heaps.

Anyway, eventually corrected by heading north, and still got all 20 controls within the 45 min time limit, but was pretty embarrassed, especially when I found out that the 3rd-placed woman (a local, so maybe she was more familiar with the golf course?) was only a few seconds behind me. Had been a bit disillusioned with silver medals, but bronze would have been so much more humiliating. I just don't seem to have orienteered well at all this year, even at WMOC. Presentations were held inside the golf clubrooms where we could order dinner, and Susanne had to get all dressed up in her fancy ASMG ambassador's uniform to present the medals, and Eleanor told mummy she looked beautiful. A fitting end to a great sequence of races and some incredibly hard work by Kay. Now I'm on holidays?

Tuesday Oct 16 #

6 AM

running 1:10:00 [3]
shoes: Asics GT-2000

Headed up past the Telegraph Station (encountering all the ASMG cross-country runners going the other way) to collect the MTBO - lockable, but not all from the same set, so I had no less than 6 different keys with me - controls at the furtherest end of the map, then Lachlan and Eleanor met me at the water drop and the rest were driven near to and I ran out/back to collect. At first, E was concerned that L was going to leave me behind each time he drove on to prearranged meeting points but apparently by the end she was egging him on to drive off as I neared the car!

In other news, a proxy parenting fail: cleaning my teeth while keeping an eye on Heidi and in the time it took me to rinse/spit she had managed to open my soap-holder and gnaw on the contents. At least pink grapefruit flavoured glycerine isn't too awful...

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