Orienteering (Foot) 1:09:42  6.6 km (10:34 / km) +45m 10:13 / km
QOC: Mason Neck State Park, VA. Arriving somewhat late and not training much lately, I ran Red. I was lucky to be able to borrow Peggy's spare glasses. I wasn't moving that quickly and had some errors which this park is known to produce. I was okay out of the start to #1. I went down the road to #2 and hit it going only a tiny bit out of the way. I spiked #3.
Going to #4, I drifted left and thought I'd corrected enough. I didn't and my GPS track shows that I went over one of the more recognizable hills without realizing it. I ended up at #5 but didn't figure it out until I went off to do a small loop; I had presumed that the control I found was a different pit near #4. After coming back, I went back towards where I'd gone on the errant loop before, then realized it midway and risked going to #4 from there. It worked, then I went straight back to #5.
Going to #6, I stayed high. I could see someone who'd started out a little before me in the distance and through the trees going through the valley. As I got closer to #6, I could see the same person or maybe it was even Peggy. I expected the control to be in one reentrant sooner but had the full view of low and high so I went on to hit it pretty well. I could see that the other person turned-up the wrong reentrant and I never saw that person afterward.
Going to #7, I stayed high again, reading the contours well, and spiked it. Before I'd started, I'd run into Eugene Tsypnyatov and he warned me to be careful about getting to #8. Along the way I realized I was drifting left a little. I must have corrected because when I hit the last big reentrant before the one near the control I cut right while the reentrant that I was looking for was straight ahead of me (from my GPS track). I turned when I thought I was seeing the marshes but went further until I'd seen both before turning back and finding it.
Going to #9, I was fine and used the bicycle trail bridge to be sure of where I was before crossing the road. From there I spiked the control. Going to #10, I went straight, passing through the parking lot where Mihai was already giving advanced training. I used the trails a little from there to spike the control.
I must have been getting really tired and brain dead after that. I started out doing a 180. I turned around after 10 seconds or so, but was flustered. Some people walking a course or hiking that I saw on the way to #10 were walking the trail, so I went toward and passed them. I thought to use the trails instead of staying in the steeper reentrants because I wasn't moving that well, especially on steeper hills. I didn't read the trail correctly so after a little while I paused and started to run back. My eyes picked up on the black line to the west and since so many courses here finish by crossing the road, I presumed it to be the road; I'd already crossed the road :( . Hitting another trail, this took me to the wooden bridge which was the black line. I ended up emerging out of the woods near the bay view and a playground that I'd passed when warming up. I was embarrassed for co-course setter Jon Campbell to see me approaching the finish from near the rest room.
It was a fun course and the heat wasn't that bad in the forest. With so many errors and moving so slowly, Peggy and Ember got me easily.