Orienteering race 2:11:57  ***** 9.91 km (13:19 / km) +134m 12:28 / km
15c shoes: Salomon Spikecross 3
I felt better today, knowing I had the freedom to take the time I needed on the course. I did reasonably well getting to controls 1-4. I followed the logging cuts to 2 and at one point I realized I was on one I did not intend because I crossed a stream. So I cut through the woods over to another one and followed it into the control. The leg from 4 to 5 did not go well. Looking at my route, I see that I did a good job of pace counting, but not so good on my bearing. My other mistake was after I knew I had gone far enough I tried reading the features of the map to see where I had gone wrong. I think looking at it now, I should have just taken bearings perpendicular to my original route and resolved to search maybe 50 meters each direction. Instead, I got away from the control trying to make sense of the terrain and after too long decided to go to the trail to relocate. 5 to 6 went well as I followed the stream into the re-entrant. The route from 6 to 7 looked too long for me to reliably use only pace counting and bearing to hit it, especially after what happened on the way to 5. So I went south to a stream and used it as a hand rail until I found a good spot to attack the control. Again from 8 to 9, I took the safe route along the trail going extra distance, but moving faster than if I tried to go through the woods. I am pleased with how the leg from 9 to 10 went. When I looked at it, I was concerned, but it turned out was able to keep good contact to it. A bit more of a mistake trying to find 11 as I had trouble finding the logging cut I wanted at a junction just less than 75 meters from the control. The rest of the course went alright.
Thank you again bl and jj for vetting. And thanks to whoever put Merick to work on Sunday. He really enjoyed taking the bike down the hill from the start. I am grateful to the orienteering community for being supportive. It was great to be able to have the confidence from Deb the registrar that Merick would not be a burden while I was out bumbling around on the course. Valerie made last minute changes for us. I even got an offer from Charlie to shadow Merick at a future event if need be. It made for a really good experience and Merick and I both want to do more.