Billygoat! Map and route.
Nice course at beautiful Ward Pound Ridge. My R leg was a little cranky before the start, so really didn't know what to expect, except not much running. 1. Skipping #1 looked really promising, but I just didn't want to be stuck that early with no remaining skip. A quick look left me with only 10 and 14 as other reasonable possibilities, and 14 seemed best if I didn't want to blow it all on 1. So along behind and in the middle of a big crowd.
2. Settled in with Paul Bennett and Paul Regan, in a pack that was growing pretty rapidly. 2,3,4 all pretty straightforward. By then we had picked up Eric Bressler, Peggy, Sam Levitin, Susie, some others. 5 was a nice leg, R of line across the hill, hugging L edge of the marsh until the white slot that took us right into the control.
Going to 6 I tweaked my R adductor pretty good when I stumbled a bit, and it ached the rest of the way. Getting a little frustrated with the size of the pack, now about 15. I was generally at the back because I wasn't doing any running, but couldn't go as fast as I wanted in the woods because of the crowd, had trouble keeping up when it was open or on trail. 7 was fine, a bit R of line. For 8 I was just following the groups and a bit bummed when I realized we were below the big hill in the green, instead of coming in along the marsh. Nasty climbing through the laurel. When we popped out on the trail between 8 and 9, the pack went around, and I went up and over, just for some variety. Sam came with me. It cost me about a minute, I think, but I would have lost some anyway just because I couldn't run the trail. 9 was fine, saw Ken and Dave Onkst coming back at me, on their way to skip 10. R around the hill on trail for a bit to 10, seeing Paul and Paul, now 2 minutes ahead when they were on their way down toward 11, as well as a bunch of others. Pretty much north, a bit behind Susie, picking up the trail that heads NE for a bit, then cutting off, going between the hills and up the rocky slope. Much steeper and more difficult than I imagined from the map. Sharon was just in front, Jim Henderson just behind. 11 easy enough, Sharon visible in front, and now settled in with Jim for the rest of the way. Easy back to 12, where we ran into Melanie, and we saw a fair amount of her off and on, zooming away after a control, but then coming into view again at the next one. Last we saw of her was at 15. I suppose our route to 15, while easy navigationally, may have been a bit too much zigzagging on trails. Anyway, it sure took a long time. Scrambled down the cliffs and into 16 to see Mairead's cheery face. No real issues on the 17-19 loop. A bit of a climb up to 20 and I was getting tired, lagging a bit behind Jim. Through the saddle to 21, and we were a bit off to the R, had to contour. Found Steve T near the control, a line too low, as were were at first., I had planned on 22 Left, since there didn't seem to any advantage to me having a trail leg. Steve and Jim came along a bit behind, but then Steve went by again on the way to 23, and we didn't see him again. By then, I was trying pretty hard to hang onto Jim, who was seeming stronger. 24 easy, along the stone wall to the trail to the bridge, etc. 25 Also easy.