orienteering race (2 hour score course) 1:59:47  *** 13.34 km (8:59 / km)
27c weight:161lbs shoes: Jalas hi-top O' shoes
Eagle Creek West - 2 hour score orienteering course. Got 27 of 28 controls (50 of 51 possible points) and made it to the finish with 13 seconds to spare. Probably needed 5 tp 6 more minutes to pick up the final control, and although I had a couple minor errors, I don't think I can count that much lost time. And so far, I haven't figured out any route that would have been more optimal (doesn't mean there isn't one).
Control #14 was badly misplaced by about 200m and I wasted about a minute looking around for it (along with several other orienteers), although I was sure I was in the right place. I eventually sighted the control on my way to the next one, after I had given up on it.
I also lost perhaps another minute on my way from my first control (7) to my 2nd (26) when I sighted a control on a ruin in a thicket & went in to it, checked the code against my descriptions, and punched it in an extra space. Since this was a score course, I was puzzled why there was an extra bag in the woods; turns out is was left over from the previous year's course (along with at least 2 or 3 others that were noted by another competitor or found by course setters). A little sloppiness on navigation and tracking my position cost me a few seconds on numbers 6 and 24, but probably not more than a minute total.
And finding 26 took a few extra seconds because the control was hung below ground level in a pit with an opening that looked like an over-size groundhog hole or badger set. Well, maybe not quite that small. But perhaps one of Swampfox's over-fed Wyoming attack badgers has moved to Indiana. Anyway, neither the feature nor the bag was visible from more than 10 meters away. But, at least the course setter had warned us that we would need to be right on top of the 3 point controls to find them. A couple other controls were slightly misplaced and the grammar of a few descriptions were slightly off (nobody knows why?), but none of those caused me any significant problem or loss of time.
The description of 25, which was described as the lower part of an impassable cliff, could have thrown me off since it was really at the top of the cliff, but it was also the only control I had seen from the road on my way into the park, so I knew to attack from above, which was the logical approach anyway. But, if you had been assuming "lower part" and gone down the wrong spur, you'd have had quite a struggle getting back up to it. That control is also where I did my good deed for the day, shouting to a competitor who was leaving "is this your control card on the ground?" I even carried it back up the hill to him. Luckily, I still found 2 more controls than he did, but it looks like there will be a rematch at the Nursery O' in a couple weeks.
I also took the hardest fall I've taken in a while. Going toward my last control (9), I caught a branch that did not yield with my toe, and I went splat in the middle of the muddy trail, with my right calf instantly cramping with a pain that released a scream doubtless heard from one end of the park to the other. For perhaps 20 seconds, I lay in the mud, unable to move my leg at all, but finally the pain subsided enough that I could struggle to my feet. My first step or two nearly dropped me back to the ground, but after hobble-walking a little ways, the leg recovered enough to let me run.
I almost had to pass up #9, figuring I needed 2 minutes to run from it to the finish, but I found it with 2:06 remaining. And, it actually took me 1:55 to run in, so I cut it pretty close.
1-10 were worth 10 points, 11-23 worth 2, 24-28 worth 3. 1 point/min overtime penalty.
Approx. distance run: 13.34 km (ocad measurement of route, not accounting for little wiggles & climb).
My order and approx splits (skipped #8):
7 1:33 1:33
16 8:35 10:08
4 2:54 13:02
13 14:25 27:27
12 4:08 31:35
24 6:57 38:32
2 4:01 42:33
1 8:23 50:56
3 3:51 54:47
5 5:39 1:00:26
15 3:14 1:03:40
17 4:48 1:08:28
18 5:01 1:13:29
20 7:40 1:21:09
27 3:25 1:24:34
28 7:57 1:32:31
22 4:03 1:36:34
21 3:50 1:40:24
11 5:05 1:45:29
19 7:32 1:53:02
9 4:52 1:57:54
finish: 1:55 1:59:47