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Race Evaluation

QOC: Rhino Goat, Avalon: Blue


1. Already feeling slow on the road; Van Anthony comments that he's surprised how slow I run but then I always beat him by 20 minutes.
2. Behind Greg Lennon, Tom Strat, Van, Sam Listwak, and of course the Power Trio. Some younger guy I don't know -- an adventure racer perhaps? -- in the area but he unwisely doesn't choose to use his fellow competitors to help him to the control.
3. Thought about dropping to the road and then climbing to the control, but it's just too much of a climb. But there's plenty of climb on the straight line, too. Surprised to see Nadim come in just behind me to this control.
4. Jon passes me on the way and yells "In my defense, I navigated to #4!" Hmm, I don't think that's a good defense... Still behind Tom, Greg, others.
5. +00:30I start off to the left of everyone else, following the old stone wall. When I get to the stream, I head upstream a bit. Greg et al are now downstream of me. On the side of the hill with the control, I see Greg et al to my left, looking; Greg yells "Have you found it?" and I yell back no, but that is a clue I should turn right, and as I do I see it up ahead. Beat them all to it (not by much!).
6. +00:30Instead of staying on the trail, which would have been smarter, I cut through to the edge of the private land, which is a bit green and slow. Hit the field just south of the private boundary then aim off wrong and hit the ruin before getting to the correct field.
7. Straight through all the junk.
8. Decide the trail -- around but not so far on a 1:7500 map and totally flat -- is the best bet. Cut off on the flat white part of the woods to pick up the trail on the other side. The trail junction is gone but still obvious from other clues; I head up to the trail and just as I'm approaching the control Tom comes in from the straight route. We were together at 7 so I figure I didn't lose any time on my route.
9. The fold is a bit problematic, but I just trail it to the reentrant and head down until the control appears. Tom is right behind me.
10. I had already planned to head out to the road; Tom follows me (and says he planned to do the same). I have to turn a bit north to stay in the park; we cross to the road where there's just a sliver of private land. The road is fast and downhill, and the point to get off the road is obvious. The green is not bad, just a bit dodgy. The big tree doesn't strike me as very big. Tom and I arrive together.
11. Uphill. I try to run but have to do some walking. Tired. Nearly at the top of the hill, I see Jon and know he must have made a big mistake.
12. Down the hill on the trail, Jon ahead on the trail and Tom behind in the woods (nice open woods!). We cut very close to the private field -- which looked quite inviting -- and to the top and over to the small saddle & rocks. Jon is gone; Tom is right behind me.
13. +02:00I stop to tie my shoe and Tom heads the opposite direction; I figure that's where the Red goes off. I'm on my own... The fields are fun to run through and it's easy to see where to go into the woods, but then I get confused by the rocks and even knowing I need to turn down to the stream junction doesn't help as I stand around for many seconds probably just enjoying a breather.
14. I'd early on decided to skip #15 but now I realize that either 14 or 15 would be a good skip. I spend a few seconds analyzing it, and decide that I can take the field and the trail almost all the way to #14, while #15 has green and no obvious attack (but it does have a trail run back to #16). I go for 14, heading up to the field. It's uphill and I'm very tired but I am able to run the whole way (slowly). Spike the control.
15. Skip.
16. I can see the control from 2 ridges away, and I see Jon heading to it. But it's very steep between where I am and the control and I go left to reduce the climb. Somewhere here I fall on my left knee and jar my head so hard to the left that the muscles on the right side of my neck get strained. It dosen't hurt until much later; the scraped knee bothers me more. Simple control, just a pain to get to.
17. Back around on the trails to avoid the huge climb. New unmapped trails here; have to just read the contours. Sure thought this leg seemed familiar!
18. Trail to up the one contour to save distance, then trail again, cutting through the green saddle before the control. Down the ditch to the control. As I leave, I see Nadim coming in. Thought he might still be behind me but I was still surprised to see him.
19. The fold was a bit annoying but I apparently dealt with it better than most. Up the small trail, Nadim passing me, to thebig trail, then cut off at the big bend (right on the line) down the hill to the trail and up a now indistinct trail. Walked all the way up. Then trail to the spur and down. When I hit the stream, Nadim was coming in from my right and since the next control wasn't that direction, I followed him, asking him "why am I following you? Do you know something I don't?" and just then he dropped down into the stream and the control.
20. Nadim took off down the stream and then stayed, in my estimation, too far to the right. I hought about going all the way to the big indistinct jeep trail (how can a jeep trail be indistinct? and yet, that's how it's mapped...) south of the straight line, but I never get that far over, instead going up the reentrant right on the line and ocming out on Norris Lane right at the bend. As I do, here comes Nadim from the woods and I take this opportunity to chide him a bit about his navigation. Of course he beats me to the control and I don't see him again.
21. Down the stream to the trail; I head up the Cascade Trail and up the reentrant with the "cairn" in it and over to the control. Have to walk this one contour hill. Pathetic.
22. Contour along the hill a bit then up and over just to the right of the line.
F. My first choice is to take the Orange Grove trail but it is further away. So I hit the Falls Trail and try to run fast through the mess of rocks, stream crossing, Sunday strollers and families to the road. Not a great route, and then with the entire length of the parking lot to still run. I was hoping to break 2 hours so I had to push it. Overall, very fun. The mass start and skip option made an otherwise typical Blue course really enjoyable. And premarked maps are nice too. Thanks to Ted for his work.

Total Time Lost - 00:03:00

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