Holiday Valley mini-rogaine, put on by BFLO. Got all the controls, with 11 minutes to spare. Finished third among the competitors on foot (Sergey got all the controls, using a mountain bike; his time was around 10-20 minutes faster than mine). Dave Levine beat my by around 15 seconds, and Crazytom beat me and Dave by a whopping 40 minutes.
I was pretty lenient in what I called a "spike", given the vagaries of a rogaine-quality map. If I navigated fairly well to the feature, but had to look around a bit to find the flag, or if the map wasn't quite right and I was confused for a while but got back on track in fairly short order, that didn't make it a non-spike. Non-spikes were 14, 15, and 6.
#1: Pretty much the closest and easiest control from the start. Not very far, not much climb. Seemed like the logical first control. A small group (containing Dave Levine, Eric Smith and his partner, and one other person) headed for it; I was surprised there wasn't a larger group. 3:12. 0.26 miles.
#20: A 20-contour climb (400 vertical feet) up a steep ski slope (Firecracker), then continuing uphill on a somewhat less steep other ski slope. Had a "WTF" moment as I approached where the control was supposed to be. There was one small building on the map, and the control description was "manmade object, N side". (Why not "building, N side"?) I came upon a small building (the start house for downhill ski races), but no control on the N side (or on the E, S, or W sides). About a minute later, Dave Levine and Eric Smith and his partner arrived, we all pondered over the missing control, then Eric's partner observed a second small building (lean to), very close to the first, with the control at the second building. Not sure why both buildings (about the same size as each other) weren't on the map. 9:44, 0.36 miles.
#14: Roughly the same elevation as 20, so it seemed to make sense to do next. I got confused reading the many ski slopes (mapped as open areas) and the windy trail mapped through the ski slopes (which often was indistinguishable from a ski slope w/o a trail), and attacked this once in the wrong place. Finally figured out where I was, and got it. Probably 3 minutes or so of lost time. 12:38, 0.51 miles.
#4: No real issues. 9:28, 0.48 miles.
#19: S to East McCarty Hill Forest Road, then follow the road to a trail junction for an attack point, then down about 8 contour lines to the control. 11:15, 0.69 miles.
#15: Lost some time on this one. Did the 8 contour line climb back up to the road (15 was approx the same elevation as 19, but it was quite a ways, so that would have been a lot of time going through the woods on the side of a hill). Took the road down to what was shown on the map as being a junction with another road (another solid black line). Turned out the other "road" was more like an ex-road -- very overgrown, looked almost impassable. There was a decent trail that went kind of towards the control, but not as close to the control as what was mapped as a road on the map. Took the trail anyway, headed down about when I thought I should (no good attack point from the trail), but it was too early, so I spent some time thrashing through the woods until I found the reentrant and the control. 22:10, 1.29 miles.
#23: A very long but easy control, located in the far SE part of the map. Down a road, then a trail. Pretty level most of the way (after the tough climb out of 15, during which I stopped to change out of my long sleeved shirt and into short sleeves, which probably took 3 minutes or so). Control on an indistinct spur very close to a trail bend. 22:23, 1.17 miles.
#11: The only obvious choice after 23, if I was going to get all of the controls, but the direct route was through private land, and a somewhat less direct route involved a 15-contour descent followed by a 15-contour climb, which I did not give serious consideration to. So the sensible route was a very long and indirect but level trail. 34:17, 1.97 miles. At this point, I was getting fairly discouraged about the prospect of getting all of the controls; it was now 12:30, 1.5 hours into the allotted 6 hours, and I had only gotten 3 controls in the past hour and 20 minutes.
#10: Again, the only obvious next control, but not real close. Long trail walk (with a little bit of running thrown in, on level, non-technical sections) to a distinct trail bend, then about 300 m through the woods to the stream junction. 16:40, 0.9 miles.
#16: Down the stream to a road, then uphill on a trail (which I quickly lost, but the woods were open enough, it was OK). Up some more climb to a spur; I intentionally aimed to the right (higher than the control was mapped, but not much in elevation, because the spur leveled off right above the control). Once I knew I was on the spur, headed down, found the control. 15:36, 0.55 miles.
#13: Down off of the spur at 16, then climbed a hill to a trail leading to near 13. 13 was a hilltop, but one of these broad, indistinct hilltops, one of my biggest worries about rogaine control locations. So I was careful, and found it right away. 25:12, 1.12 miles.
#9: Back to the trail close to 13, NW to the FLT junction, down the FLT until I hit a reentrant that led to the stream junction at #9. Ran into Dave Levine (one of my many encounters with him!), and remarked how we were 3 hours into the rogaine, but it didn't look good for me, because I only had 10 (out of 23) controls. 9:19, 0.69 miles.
#23: This was interesting. Should have been road/trail all the way. Climbed up out of 9 (short climb) to a dirt road. S on the road, was going to go to the CCC camp, then pick up a trail going W to the control. I heard some logging activity in front ot me, as I was going along the road, then a sound of a tree falling, then I saw that it fell right across the road, that I had planned on using to get to the CCC camp! Then chainsaws in action, cutting up the tree. Decided not to take the road all the way, to avoid the active logging operation, so I angled SW through the woods to the trail to 23. 12:18, 0.72 miles.
#8: A major climb (about 10 contour lines) up to South Pale Ale trail, then took the trail for a fairly short distance to the indistinct spur. The control was visible from the trail, but I was certainly helped by two rogainers who were at the control plotting their strategy. 11:04, 0.38 miles.
#5: Continued on South Pale Ale trail to a road which led to another road which led to a blocked off road which led to the trail. All very easy navigationally, although one road was mostly uphill, and it just seemed to take way longer than I wanted it to. 24:52, 1.39 miles.
#7: Took FLT to the trail bend at 7. 11:03, 0.62 miles.
#18: The plan was to go straight west from 7 to a trail that would take me very close to 18. I headed into the woods from 7, and very quickly hit some pretty thick vegetation. I didn't see any relief in the vegetation looking left or right, and since I was only about 5% of the way to the trail I wanted, I decided to bail out rather than fight the vegetation. So back out to #7, then I took a much longer trail route to get to 18. Took FLT north from 7, to a side trail that quickly became a lot more overgrown than it seemed like it would be from the map. Went to a bend in the trail, then headed to where I thought the control would be, and found it fairly easily. But what I thought was going to be a 10-15 minutes control took nearly double that. 26:54, 1.28 miles.
#21: North from 18 to a dirt road, took the road to the junction with another road, from where it looked like an easy trail/road to near 21. When I got to the road junction, I again ran into Dave Levine, on the road and looking a bit puzzled. I quickly figured out the reason for his puzzlement -- the junction looked absolutely nothing like it was shown on the map. The "road" that was shown on the map, going towards the control, absolutely didn't exist. There was a trail, on the correct side of the road, but going at a very different angle than the mapped road. I took the trail anyway, read the contours, and eventually managed to get onto a trail that led to near 21. 18:40, 0.75 miles. It was now 3:56 pm, only slightly more than an hour left.
#6: A long slog uphill through the woods, eventually coming out on a very rough open field. Went through the field, picked up a fairly major but unmapped trail that took me east, then left the trail to go through some pine forests. Eventually came out in the general area of the control, but things just weren't looking like the map showed. Finally found a trail that led to near the control. Dave Levine was again there, coming at things from a totally different direction than I was! 20:18, 1.00 mile.
#17: From this point on, Dave and I took very similar approaches, with him being consistently 30-60 seconds ahead of me. Took trails, which looked potentially confusing so I was pretty careful, to hear the control. Left the trail, came in a little low in the reentrant, headed up the reentrant, saw Dave punching the control. 12:51, 0.7 miles. Time was now 4:30. I finally felt confident, with three controls left, two of them which looked very easy, and a downhill finish, that I would get them all.
#12: Up a bit of a Holimont ski slope, between two ponds, then down a trail to where I thought I should leave the trail to head for the reentrant and the control. I got distracted by a blazed but unmapped trail that looked like it went in kind of the right direction, so I took it. It led to a reentrant but I quickly determined it was the reentrant that was about 100 m north of the right one. Found the right reentrant and the flag. 8:31, 0.45 miles.
#3: Down the reentrant to a trail which led to another trail which led almost to the control. When I got there, Dave L. and Eric and his partner were kind of standing around the control looking perplexed. I got there and found that there didn't seem to be a punch. We all agreed to vouch for each other's presence at the control! 4:42, 0.29 miles.
#2: Down the hill (nice, gentle ski slope, decent footing, nice to have a downhill at that point of the day). 4:07, 0.28 miles.
Finish: Continued downhill. Made a slight route choice error in following Dave to the uphill side of the building that was meet headquarters, which meant I had to go down a flight of metal stairs. (Might have been better to go on the downhill side of the building, and avoid the stairs.) I tried to run down the stairs (even though Dave was clearly ahead and had beaten me), and I almost tripped on the top step. That would have been sadly ironic to survive the whole day in the woods with no injury, and then get hurt falling down a flight of stairs! 2:43, 0.25 miles.