Route Gadget; Red - GPS Route
Day 1. Feeling good, both mentally and physically; though I knew I wasnt going to be running the fastest. Surprised by how accurate my GPS to hand-drawn routes were, and surprised by the fact that everyone else seemed to be running pretty slow (turns out the woods had a horrendous amount of vines that just made running no fun in lots of places). And so my analysis begins:
Control 1- Properly warmed up physically, so I told myself to warm up mentally now. I knew that my tragic errors occur at either point 1 or about point 7/8ish when I get tired and lose focus. So slow down, look at the compass, and start getting into the feel of it again. Started with another Orienteer that was wearing a Beatles "Yellow Submarine" bike jersey, and i am pretty sure he graduated from LaPorte HS. Cant think of his name. Anyways, punched after him and started to follow him across the feild and used his clearing into the woods. At this point I was still getting my bearing on the map and was in the green before I figured out that the best route would have been along the lake. The fight was fighting and didnt want me to get to the edge of the lake, so I kept running along the natural flow of the fight and then cut at an opportune time taking a straight west asmuth to put me in the swampy stuff, at which time I could see the point in the distance and just ran right to it. Error: 40 seconds
Control 2- Saw that there were 2 feasible routes, but the simplest would be to run the trail. Didnt go for following the river because the banks were terrible and the junk along the edges would have impeded my movement more than the green. So I went up to the ridgeline trail and pace-counted from the dark green thickets to stop me from over-running the point, then when it was time to get off the trail I took an asmuth and ran to the rivers edge which I followed for about 100m til I saw the point.
Control 3- Dangerous; I was feeling too good and ran to the saddle but wasnt really thinking about an attackpoint for number 3. I figured I could run right to it and see the boulders from far off, which was true but the problem was that the fight put me somewhere that I didnt want to be and I kept running knowing that I was not on the right asmuth. I kept cutting trying to get back on it, but it was unsuccessful to keep up speed and run on the asmuth. I crossed the river and tried to precisely relocate but couldnt and just kept running. I found some ditches and knew that I should follow them, but didnt know which one I was on. I felt like my gut wanted me to go north when the ditch ended and so I did; then luckily I saw the rocks in the distance and ran to the point. I was making sense of the general area with the contours, but wasnt certain of where I was until I saw the point. Very risky, and I should have been smarter to atleast relocate at the river and fix myself. Error: 38 seconds
Control 4- Motivation point, run north to the river, follow the river to the road, road to the river, run the river until you see the point.
Control 5- Another easy point, ran west very fast save for my hat falling off several times, ran to the bend in the road as my attackpoint and could see the point from there.
Control 6- Crossed the river at the trail crossing as my midway point, and then knew that attacking from above would be better than overrunning the point on the flat bottom. I gained about 9 meters of elevation and could see everything, came around the corner and saw the cut that the point should be in, and then 15 meters away I finally saw it. I really liked this control because I felt like I knew what I would see and it happened like I planned. The control was hidden but I knew exactly where it was.
Control 7- Very tired on this point and knew this was going to be the leg to be smart on. If I didnt stop myself, I would have run way too far south on the flat creek bed and then tried to figure out which reentrant to follow up from the swamp to the west. But I decided to take an asmuth and gently walk up the contours to teh trail as my attackpoint, I read ahead and despite being tired and walking most of this control, it was easy to find and I stayed in control of my mind.
Control 8 - had just read this leg so I thought it would be a sinch, though I was tired and had poor execution. Got to the second trail just fine, but then took a bad asmuth; one right to the point and not the river intersection. That means that I was set up to cross three rivers, rather than just one and follow the finger. didnt bother to correct because I got put on a path that was easy to follow and didnt want to spend the energy to go south to the river intersection. Found out this was a bad idea when I got into the green north of the control. I was walking through the vines getting tangled and wrapped up; really frustrating to get through and my movement absolutely sucked. I saw the boulder to the north and tried to cut south to the point, but the ravine was too deep and I had to run to a shallower point, then come back and finally tag the bag. Error: 1 min 40 seconds
Control 9 was a trail run to the river, thank goodness it went downhill most of the way, I ran slow and recovered my breath as well as shaking off my bad route. crossed the river and followed the vegetation to the ditches that lead to the ciarens which took me to the point.
Control 10 - got to trail as easy as possible, ran trail trying to find the smaller trail, but didnt find it, and my pacecount said I should be near it so I curved off the main trail trying to find it, but never saw any clear evidence, so I ran north to the river. Looked right and saw a really clear cut in the bank, so I decided to give it a shot and didnt find it in the bottom of the cut, so I went back to my original spot and aligned my map with the river to make sure I knew where I was and realized that odds were very good I was too far east. Ran west and found it. In hindsight, it would have been faster to run NNE from 9 and hit the river right away then run east along it just a few contours up to read the cuts and find the point that way. I tried to attack from the bend in the indistinct trail and that would have been OK if i found it, but alas I just confused myself and made the route alot longer when I wasnt really having trouble running downhill. The trail wasnt much faster. Error: 2 min 30 seconds
Control 11- asmuth and pace, but the fight was distracting me too much and I ended up short of the point with my pace and slightly drifted north. I knew it was bad so I bailed north quick and bounced off the trail to the trail intersection then shot straight south to the point. Error: 1 min
Control 12 ran fast to the west because the vegetation looked friendly, and then cut south to the river, then followed the bend in the river so I went up the contours and crossed the trail, took an asmuth to the rootstocks and found them no problem but I had to cut east after hitting them because the way the hill was I ended up getting sucked west
Control 13- Motivation point. Very tired and cursing the vines
Go Control- this was a fun Go control- Gave it good form and effort and I did it in 40 seconds.