Orienteering (Foot) 1:31:46  7.3 km (12:34 / km) +399m 9:52 / km
spiked:17/18c slept:7.5 weight:195lbs
QOC: Fountainhead Regional Park, VA. I ran the Red course today, and that was the first time doing more than Green in many months. I felt better prepared for it today though by the end I was pretty tired. Afterward, my right leg was definitely feeling the strain. Lifting my knee took extra effort. Overall, I was on target today. I made no significant errors other than taking lessor route choices on 1-2 legs. The first 1/3 of the race was hilly with short legs that made it hard not to miss. The route choices and overall navigation got more technically challenging through to the end. The advertised climb of 265m could not have been right and my watch measured it at 399m.
S-1 - Down the left fork of the road to the parking lot, then in. The control was visible from the road.
1-2 - Straight over.
2-3 - Down to the road, then leaving from the bend I went almost straight.
3-4 - Up to the sharp trail bend, the leaving the trail just before the next sharp bend, I continued straight to the control. One side reentrant helped me keep aligned.
4-5 - I ran SE leaving #4, making my way to the parking lot. I ran into Max along the way while he was making an error. I pointed out that the parking lot was visible. I rounded the maintenance yard on road on the south side and reentered the forest part way on the road curve, to get around a small reentrant. Crossing the second reentrant, I followed along it a little too far. As I rounded the spur the control was visible a little higher up. I lost not much more than 10-15 seconds.
5-6 - Fairly straight.
6-7 - Just a little left of straight, to stay high.
7-8 - I used the side reentrants to cross the bigger one, climb the ridge, and drop into the control.
8-9 - Down the reentrant, and across the creek 3 times before following up the reentrant with the slight waterfalls, and cutting right into the correct reentrant with the control. I was walking up the waterfall reentrant.
9-10 - With the criss crossing course legs it wasn't obvious which circle was #10. I largely went straight, using the reentrants to keep me aligned. The climbing was slow.
10-11 - I ran around on the trail, cutting off some of the curves. I attacked from the north.
11-12 - I went out to the powerlines before cutting in above the stream NW of the control. This leg was easier than it would have been without the water being such a catching feature.
12-13 - I ran straight initially to get around the first bay/inlet. I cut more to the right after that to save climb. Sidehilling into the big reentrant that dumps into the second bay/inlet, I ran up it to the correct side reentrant. Along the way, Max came in from behind me, almost catching and overtaking me before I cut off to attack my control. He was on the Green course and needed to go further to his control. Several people were converging on the control from above as I got there from below.
13-14 - I walked up the reentrant toward the trail. Looking back, Dave Pruden was closing-in. He'd been running the Blue course and said he'd run the first part of it too fast; he confided that he was paying for it now. As Dave passed, our paths crossed. I'd thought he was headed toward my Red course control but after crossing the ridge, I thought otherwise. I descended the right side of the reentrant and spiked the control.
14-15 - To save climb, I almost doglegged on the spur, then contoured across. As I'd left #14, I saw Dave Pruden attacking it. I was losing count of the small reentrants I passed but kept going figuring that I was not far enough yet, and that the slope was at the wrong angle. Getting to a ridge, I figured I'd see the control ahead across a reentrant, and I did. As I punched, I could hear Dave coming from behind.
15-16 - Leaving #15, I decided to save climb by going around to the north. As I did this I got concerned that there was still significant or equivalent climb, and it was too long. I executed the route well, but as I was making the final attack, Dave Pruden was climbing back up in a dogleg, having already been to the control. I told him I should have gone straight.
16-17 - I doglegged, the same as Dave Pruden had, and got on the trail. I passed one guy who was perhaps on the course, and others on the trail I could see Dave a few times. Attacking from above, my aim was a little off to the right, and once again, I could see Dave climbing back out the way he'd come, having already been to the control.
17-18 - This leg was hard to read due to the criss-crossing of other legs. I went kind of straight, crossing the first trail and going near #10, without necessarily seeing it. Once to the trail, I descended straight, rather than switchbacking. I paused after the bridges and decided that staying in the valley was best. I left the big reentrant for the side reentrant with the control, coming into it from the NW.
18 - F - I used the trail for a short way, then kind of stayed straight across the deadfall to the side of the parking lot. I could see Dave Pruden walking away from the finish as I ran in.
Overall, I felt I navigated pretty well, and ran well considering that I hadn't been this distance in a while. It was also a hilly course on a day in the upper 60s F. A breeze was bringing in-rain. I was 5th on the course. The course was 7.3K and I did it in 5.62 miles.