Long course, Green Y, Chestnut Ridge, south of Buffalo. For once, I didn't have any big disasters; worst was #9 where I probably lost 4-5 minutes (4:50 per AP split analysis). But lots of smaller mistakes, and just generally slow moving. So I was 15th out of the 27 people on my course, and definitely in the bottom 25% of the people in my age group.
AP say 9:10 of errors, which seems about right. The rest of the slowness was just from moving slowly.
My course: http://i609.photobucket.com/albums/tt171/RLShadow/...
#1: I was running very late due to a necessary stop at Wal-Mart in Batavia to pick up a key item of clothing I forgot to bring (some running-type shorts). I got to the start line a minute before my name was called. That's my excuse for being somewhat discombobulated when I punched the start and looked at my map. The first leg could hardly have been easier, but I bet I stood there for something like 45 seconds before I could gather my bearings and figure out which way to go.
#2: The choice was the go longer and take a bridge over the gully, or attack the gully and save a moderate amount of distance. I chose the gully, and I regretted it, because it exhausted me, something like 3 minutes into the race. My time on this leg was decent but I don't think it was worth it. Maybe partly because of the struggle down and then up the gully, I didn't have much pep to do a lot of running later on, even on good trails and roads.
#3 and 4: No issues. These depended to a large part on following compass bearings which I'm usually pretty bad at, but I seemed to do OK.
#5: Took a fairly long but pretty safe route, and nailed the control (not that it was hard).
#6: Another compass bearing, which worked. Maybe I'm actually getting a bit better at this skill, which I should have learned decades ago.
#7: I pondered a longer route that would cross the gully on a bridge, but decided it was too much longer, so I reluctantly attacked the gully. Had a scare going down a short but very steep embankment; I grabbed onto a small tree to slow myself down, as I usually do, but the tree was dead and immediately broke off, which led to me falling down the embankment. Fortunately, no damage was done other than getting very dirty, but I had 2-3 anxious seconds after the tree broke and before I landed and realized I was OK.
#8: No real issues, basically a compass bearing.
#9: Issues!! I worried about this one when I saw it (actually I was worried about it from the last 2-3 controls, as I studied it during times when I didn't need to focus too hard on navigation during those controls. It involved climbing a very steep and fairly high hill, coming out on a trail. The problem was going to be, I realized, figuring out exactly where on that trail I was when I hit it.
When I got to the trail, I thought I knew where I was, from two streams that intersected almost at the trail, but I misread the terrain, and I was actually one stream down (maybe about 50 m).
I took a bearing (from what I thought was my position), and came out on a real impressive rootstock, about 4 m high. The problem was, the clue said 2.5 m rootstock. I still looked, being optimistic, but that wasn't it. The next problem is that I didn't know where I was in relation to the right rootstock, which would up being only 30 m east of the wrong one I was at. I guessed (wrongly) that I was east of the right rootstock, and headed west for about 100 m, until I hit a stream in a shallow reentrant. The shallow reentrant gave me a clue as to where I was, and once I realized that, I backtracked, past the 4 m rootstock, and found the right one. Time lost, according to AP: 4:50
#10: Compass bearing, going slow because I didn't want to mess this one up.
#11: A non-optimum route down the hill, then attacked from the road just east of the stream. I was off a bit on my bearing, but I pace counted and realized when I should be getting to the control, and when I didn't see it when I should have, I quickly realized I had gone a little to the right.
#12: Long and slow out to the road (non-optimum route for sure), then took the road to the easiest trail, even though it was slightly longer.
#13: Compass bearing, and I was heading correctly, but once I saw the ridge that the control was on, I aimed off to the right to make sure I'd hit the ridge before the control. It worked but I really should have just kept going on my bearing. It wouldn't have been a disaster if I had missed slightly to the left, as it would have been obvious.
#14: More or less a compass bearing to the trail, but trying to aim off to the left. But once I crossed the stream, I headed back to the right because I sensed I had drifted too far to the left. Came out on the trail almost right at the control, although I headed into the vegetation a little (like 15 m) to the right, causing me to deal with some fairly thick stuff (although only briefly).
#15: Headed N to the indistinct trail (which was actually quite distinct), then out to the road, N on the road, cut in a little too early but no major lost time.