Readers of the blog will have seen posts about my orienteering comeback since my retirement some 2 years ago. Most of this has been on the fells with large scale 1:40 000 maps. I have also some entered local orienteering events, mainly being last or last but one!
So, with anticipation and apprehension, I entered my biggest O-challenge yet, the Southern Championships, held on 26/01/14 in Bracknell Forest, about an hour drive from where we are currently staying in Kent.
The following photos are gratefully taken from David Jukes Flicker page. See here
None of them feature myself - they are for interest though.
Long drive into the forest
Heading to park - in the rain!
Walking to register
Inside the Registration tent -see the electronic recording gear
Waiting at the south start - count down in minutes
Crossing the start line to get the map and list of controls to find - this is the first time that they are seen
Finding a control - hidden behind a large bush
Out in the forest
This control is partially hidden in a ditch
Almost back at the finish!
Relieved to be back!
The wet drive back out of the forest!
The event is at national level – a real test of navigation!
To be honest, I really struggled with some of the technical aspects of the navigation, losing considerable time in the process.
When my route finding went well, my running ability and fitness placed me in the lower half of the pack of orienteers. When I got lost – well, I lost loads of time.
The map scale was at 1:10 000 and I still tend to over-run at this scale.
Eventually time overtook me and I ran out of time to get all the controls and so finish the course! Technically therefore, this resulted in a disqualification!
Failed in my test of navigation!
Results:Southern Champs M60 Long course – 8.5km with 220m of climb. 16 controls in 2hr39mins
Until the next time then!