Orienteering race 9:57:00 30.0 mi (19:54 / mi) +2097m16:21 / mi ahr:125 max:173 43c shoes: Speedcross 4 - Navy
Winter Wildcat 10 h Rogaine 3/50 OA 1 coed
We drove down to Summersville Friday night and stayed in a nice airbnb. Headed over to Summit Bechtel Reserve in the a.m. and arrived just before 7 when maps were handed out. Our strategy was to minimize climb whenever possible. We decided on a CCW route that hit the embedded o-course pretty early. The layout of CPs was great. There were a lot of different options and it wasn’t always clear which was the best.
The race started at 8 a.m. It was maybe 15F at the start. I was worried about being cold, but the sun was out and it warmed up pretty quickly. We started off with a mass of people to 31. Chose a different route to 84, but got bunched up with a few other teams fighting through some thick mountain laurel leaving the CP. After that it started to spread out. We saw a lot of teams throughout the day, but we weren’t often going in the same direction (a sign of a good course layout).
Made it to the o-course about 45 min into the race. The flags were small (6x6), but hung pretty generously. We cruised around without any difficulty. Finished in just under an hour and then we were on our way again. The next section went by quickly. We were on roads/trails for a while so were moving quickly. From 92 – 63 (a long time) it felt like we were moving so slowly. There was a lot of climbing and the hills were so steep! We also struggled with finding 95. It was mapped on a spur and we didn’t read the control description (bottom of cliff) so wandered around on the spur for a while. There were a few other teams there at the same time and someone finally spotted it way higher than where I was expecting. Lost about 15 minutes.
At 63 we sat down to assess options. We didn’t think we were going to clear, but we weren’t that far off either. Decided to drop 44 to save some climbing for not that many points and then reconsider our end strategy in a couple of hours. After we set off again it felt like we were moving along much better. Trotted on roads/trails where we could and trudged on the ups. My navigation was clean. At 93 we made the call to skip 91 and 61. We made it back to the finish area with enough time to grab 54 and had 3 minutes to spare :)
Kevin was awesome! Key: Feed him lots of pretzels. I actually felt hungry fairly often (which is unusual), but that made it easy to stay on top of eating/drinking. We thought we weren’t moving that quickly, but we actually did quite well and ended up in 3rd! Nice to see training paying off. The venue was really nice and Mark, as always, put on a great event. An awesome day in the woods!