Orienteering 1:45:37  *** 8.9 km (11:52 / km) +150m 10:57 / km
Ran strong to #1, beating the Red Y runner I started with. Clean to #2 and #3. Started to head straight to #4 and remembered the warning about "Fern Fancy" on the side of the hill. Slogged through the green to the road and went around. #5 and #6 were clean, but slow through the ferns/deadfall. #7 was fine until I got bogged down in the marsh inside the circle. Long run to #8 and I was very uncertain throughout. Spiked #9 and #10 and tried to hug the swamp to #11. Got too low and had to suck wind to climb into the control with a small pack. Traveled well to #12 and would have led the pack there if I hadn't glanced at the swamp and not seen the control. I went over one more rise to peek, saw nothing, looked back and saw many of the pack leaving the flag. Was very efficient to #13 both to and from the road. Clean to #14 and then made by best decision of the day, taking the road to #15, coming in through the isthmus with a very easy attack. [Note: compared many splits with David Yee who was part of the pack from #11 to #14; we were always close in the woods with him opening up a good deal on me on road-intensive legs; he took the woods to #15 and I took the road, beating him by 90 seconds; he would undoubtedly have taken me by a minute on the road.] Slow to the road for #16, but attacked off the water and saw the flag two steps into the woods. Okay to #17 (sucking wind, though) but did stop at the flag by the depression first. Missed #18 to the left, hittting the cairn (with a flag) at the edge of the circle. Realized exactly where I was and made a 90 degree error as I corrected, hitting the hill to the N of the control. Finding no flag, I sited back to the cairn and realized the error (2 minutes). Slogged my way in to the finish basically clean.