Orienteering race 50:09  5.57 km (9:00 / km)
shoes: 201004 Inov8 X-Talon 212
This morning's exercise was a middle distance race simulation that Boris designed. I started a minute after Sam and a minute before Andrew, so I pushed quite hard out of the start.
I had some small hesitation at 1, and I was very slow moving up the hill to 3, but the beginning of my course was solid. I started seeing Sam at control 4, running down the cliff line, and I ran into an ensemble of Lori, Presto, Sam, and Erin inching our way toward 5. At 7, Patrick Goeres caught up to me and blazed past leaving 8. I struggled at 9, and Andrew gradually powerwalked past me up the hill.
Leaving 10, I was alone, and based on the past controls, I unwisely sought to minimize climb. I considered going left (which was by far the best route), but settled on running by the stream to right, which looked like good running. It was slower than I expected, but it wasn't too costly until I attacked earlier than I should have, aiming for the saddle just north of the control. The green was inhibiting, and visibility was low. I popped out into the circle accurately, but I overshot the control and had to double back up the hill. I ran into Eric at 11.
My route to 12 was slightly left of the line, aiming for the white patch in the green (which apparently does not exist). I hit the boulder pair on my line, then attacked down without problems. Eric, who had gone right, was much faster. I then charged down the spur, passing Eric, to 13.
Control 14 was by far my biggest disaster; my plan was to run along the stream to the small hill on the edge of the marsh, clip the marsh and lead into the hill where the control was. However, the marsh was more dynamic than the map suggested, and I drifted far to the left, ending up on the row of cliffs about halfway between 13 and 15. I was convinced that I was near the circle, and so I searched for about two minutes before noting the huge rocky reentrant to the north and putting the pieces together. It was a meltdown-scale failure, costing about 4 minutes.
I also made a comparatively small (15-20 sec) 180 at 15, where I thought the finish was north of me. Orienting my map really confused me, as I had planned my exit relative to the contours, and I figured it out with great frustration. Boris, Marie, Alex, and Erin were all in my vicinity from 15 to the end, which may have mitigated any further errors.
Overall, I struggled with climb and making intelligent local and global route choices through the vegetation. I made an entirely unacceptable 8 minutes of error. I think the presence of other people was ultimately negative because it distracted me from concentrating on the basic orienteering skill set. I did glean some information from people around me, so it isn't obvious what the net effect was. Alex navigated well, and beat me.