Orienteering (Foot) 1:19:46  5.9 km (13:31 / km) +291m 10:51 / km
QOC: Fountainhead Regional Park, VA. This was supposed to be an easier day for me since I ran long (almost 11 miles) the day before, and have been ramping up my running again. I ran almost 8k on this just under 5.9K course. Most of it was good but 2 legs were just bad. I knew Jon Torrance (course setter) would have some tricky legs in this park that he knows better than any of us.
S-1 - I ran up the road and in from just past where the road split. I tripped on some light deadfall just about 10m from the control and bruised my left thigh.
1-2 - This was a simple leg and it seemed just to get us out into the woods again. I hadn't run Green for a while and was starting to think it was being dumbed down. The biggest problem was trying to figure out how to get across the terrain. I crossed the creek at lest 3 times but tried to stay high most of it. I could see the control once I'd hit the flat lands.
2-3 - (oops where are my leg comments for this?)
2-4 - I was eagar to make good time. I looked at the leg quickly and it seemed like another easy one--long run across the creek valley, then up along the trail toward the big reentrant system before the power lines--I never realized that #3 was in the middle between #2 and #4 until the end of the run. As I was passing where I would/should have turned up to get #3, I noted my position and just kept running. Not seeing it seemed to at least partly be due to have #3 be in almost a straight line between #2 and #4. The control circle was among a good bit of green and the circle was broken and I might have mistook what was left to be contours since the remains of the circle were almost parallel and touching the contours. The numeral "3" was also printed away from the control on top of an index and a regular contour. When I showed this to others who hadn't run green, it took them a little while to see control #3 also. I just didn't look long enough when I was on the course. Others on green didn't seem to have any real issue with it as no one else skipped it. I spiked #4 though I was a little shakey where the trail had been rerouted. I wasn't seeing the remains of the old trail much.
4-5 - I decided that the climb and debris would be slow on the direct route. Trying to make the most of it, I left quickly and ran away from #5 to go back up to the trail and around. I stayed on the trail even after crossing the power line ride. I returned to the power line just before the bend in the power line ride. I stayed on it briefly, just until it looked like there was easier running. I was worried about entering the woods at an indistinct place but felt the reentrant to my left would guide me. At one point it seemed like the reentrant was flattening out and I got confused. I crossed the stream for a short way, paused then returned to hit the control well.
5-6 - I went fairly straight. I did have to cut right a little at the end.
6-7 - I tried going straight and stopped at the ridge that the control was on. I got a little below the control as that was where the deadfall mapped and in reality, had lessened. I turned up from there and found it. It wasn't exactly my plan to aim off, but it was probably efficient for me.
7-8 - Either from the hill of the deadfall, I proceeded a little left of straight. I tried to correct once across the power lines but it seemed a long way to the saddle that I was thinking of hitting. I crossed and climbed up the reentrant that was hidden by the leg line, and saw it after cresting and getting through the holly trees.
8-9 - I ran mostly straight but contoured a little getting across the big reentrant. I knew from the top of the next reentrant that I was just about on the leg line, and I saw it soon after.
9-10 - I jogged/ran where I could, hitting the trail bend and then crossing the power line. I was a little left of the line going in due to better runnability, and I looked for a big deadfall ahead to guide me in.
10-11 - As I was leaving #10 another guy was there too. I took off in a hurry. I initially planned to be a little left of the line. My bearing was a little off so at the first reentrant I veered left and ran down that spur. I was just trying to move well and not reading the map much. I was making things fit. At the bottom, I could see the stream bending--I thought it odd since that would have put me much lower than I had planned. I crossed the stream and climbed. This put me back on the spur that I'd wanted to run down, not across the larger stream that I still had to cross to get to #11. I got nearly to the top and was having difficulty figuring out what had happened. Ahead and a lot closer to #11 than I was, I could see the guy that had been at #10 when I was. I hunted around a little where I was, then concluded that I'd made some weird error putting back near #10. After that, I moved well and almost caught up to the guy that had started the leg with me. Disappointing it was that I'd made such a bad error! AP shows I lost only 3 minutes but if that's all it was I did good. It felt like I lost a lot more.
11-12 - I went left of straight. I didn't consider going around until approaching the bottom but that looked too long anyway. The guy I'd seen at #10 had gone straight and was climbing a bigger steeper hill out of sight. I spike the control.
12-13 - As I was leaving #12, I saw the guy I'd seen at #10 again and his eyes told me he was wondering how I'd gotten ahead again. I decided to be safe and to use the ride. I was doing well with this and got on the mapped trail. I left at the hairpin bend without stopping. Soon I saw Mark Mace on my right climbing. I signed to him about having lunch later and was thinking I should be more focused. I started getting a little confused and when I saw a gully that I couldn't match-up I was more confused. This gully was east of the control and only shows up as a little reentrant notch in the hiilside. I don't recall seeing before though I had been below previously, at the pointy map border. I ran around at the bottom more confused as I didn't find the control in any of the reentrants that I'd turned right to inspect--in my mind, I had a memory of a boulder cluster control that Gavin had used in the summer short series here last summer. It might have been the same one as #13 but my memory of it placed it in the areas I was searching. I was making the mistake of using my memory rather than reading the map. Concluding that I was nearing the bigger stream with the bridges leading back to the parking lot, I turned back still unable to match-up reentrants. The one gully that wasn't mapped was really confusing me. I ended up running into the out of bounds areas north of the control and realized it when I climbed and saw the houses. After that, I ran right to the control. I lot over 8 minutes on this adventure and did a lot of extra climbing.
13-14 - I took a step or two up the hill, then decided to stay mostly low--I'd been there already and knew it was very runnable. That unmapped gully got in my way a little but once I dropped fully, I ran well. After crossing the bridges, I ran up the now unmapped ride of the old trail. In the EX2 Bushwhacker Adventure Run in 2012, pre-many inuries, I'd sprinted up this ride after a 10 mile run and left behind other racers. This time I walked. Near the top there was a guy hunting for a control that was probably the one I was headed to. I kept going and spiked it.
14-15 - I started going straight and crossed the trail a step or two before pausing. I was having trouble reading the trail. That was probably because it was just a trail segment not connecting to anything anymore, in the direction that I was going. I decided to play it safe and use it even though it was a little longer. It took me to within sight of the control on the spur.
15-16 - I went straight and liked that we had a different finish. We usually end up coming past the cemetery and sprint in across the grass. As I got moving, the guy I'd seen as I was going to #14 came up behind me and on my left. I picked up my pace and even though I had to cross the reentrant where it was deeper, I got there first.
After downloading I found out that I'd mispunched. This must be the 4th time in about 6 races. The last one at PWF wasn't my fault since that control had been mis-hung before it got reset by Jordan Loughlin. I really need to do better at focusing. That should come as I get in better shape again, as long as I don't overrun my map reading. Overall, the course today was fun. I was tired.