Golden Gate Park, The Lost Herd map. Day 2 of Vladimir's Sprint the Golden Gate. Sunny, temp in the high 30’s.
Got there a little late; parked as instructed, but it was far from the assembly area. Less warm up than I would have liked; legs felt heavy from yesterday. Feeling rather unsettled at the start.
Just discovered that the map is 1:7500. I assumed it was 1:10,000. That may have been a factor in overshooting #3 and certainly on #1, #2 and #4.
Had originally planned to skip this day, but 20 controls in 3.39 km made me decide to come. Excellent technical exercise. Did much of it very well, but too many mistakes, totaling about 5:20, including one of 2:15.
1. Stood at the start for 10 secs identifying what was in front of me and picking out a route. Decided on a route that was a bit longer but easier to negotiate. In the long linear open field, almost ran past the turn-off to the little trail (pace count wasn’t up - again, the wrong scale), costing another :05. Lost :15 all together.
2. Northern route was probably shorter, but went for what looked simple. Coming off the last road, I mistook the form line contour for a trail, so I was a bit confused as I approached the control, expecting to run across the ditch. Pace count was still going (another scale error), but judging by the corral above, knew I’d gone far enough, so figured I must be low; as I went up, saw Daniel Sebo punching in. Lost 15 secs.
3. Knew my exit route, took off in that direction, hit the trail. But by the time I had located the control on my map, I was already past it (another scale error), at the next clearing, surprised there was no control in it. Seeing the road ahead, I somehow thought that maybe I was off to the right, so curled left, cut through some low bushes to a clearing, nothing. Saw some buildings to the west, but took a while to figure out where I was, and then it was easy to get to the control. (But why didn’t I realize right away that the most likely possibility was that I overshot the control?) Lost about 2:15.
4. Didn’t see (on the map) the trail under the red line, so out to the road and run along the sidewalk looking for the little trail. My forth scale error: Pace count hadn’t run out, but it seemed that I’d reached the mapped clearing. What I saw on my left didn’t look much like a trail, so I kept running for a few more seconds, realized that I was indeed in the clearing, went back and turned uphill, and sure enough that was the trail and I was soon at the control. Lost :15.
5. Trail S to the junction, then rough compass towards the control and spot it very soon.
6. Didn’t consider getting on the path to the S (probably a better route). Back to the trail heading NE, through the paved area, then turn right and go over the lower part of the spur. Had to stop for a few secs to see what I should be looking for; a few more steps and I saw the bag. Lost :05.
7. Over the hill to the trail and head E. Intended to turn right at the second little trail, but never saw it. When I saw that I was too close to the road ahead, took a bearing, went through the fight, could see the reentrant ahead, then came to the control. Lost :50.
8. Shortest direction out to the road, turn right, left at the next corner, use the lake and the benches to tell me when to cut in.
9. W to the lake, path around the north side, N through the parking lot. Learned later that some people left #8 heading N or NW, right through the fight - something that wouldn’t have occurred to me.
10. Thought for a moment about trying to navigate more or less directly, but it looked like that would be too slow, so headed NNW alongside the road, turned right onto the the trail along JFK, through the parking lot and along paths to the control. Pushed the pace a little on this one so as to make the longer but easier route pay off.
11. Surprised that I had the fastest split on this leg, given that I made a 15 sec error. Took the path E. Didn’t notice on the map that there was a path right before the one I wanted to turn right on, so I was running S on the wrong path. When I got the middle of the pool on the right, stopped because the control should have been there - and, in any case, this didn’t look like a path that was going to have a Parcourse Station. Quickly realized my error, ran up the hill, and there was the control to my right.
12. Back through the start, lots of features to guide me to the control - as I planned my route for the next one.
13. A little E to avoid fight, then S across the road to the trail. Didn’t think of going a little further E and then S to the road. Headed W on the trail and when it veered right I cut left up the hill. Must’ve left the trail earlier than I thought or cut too sharply left because I wound up stopped by dense fight and unsure of where I was. Went W along the ridge line and saw a place where I could get through to the street, but wound up having to crawl under some thick brush. Popped out in the street - dangerous: no sidewalk, lots of traffic - went W for 50m to the clearing and saw the control. Lost at least :30.
14. Hardly looked at the map for this one, as I knew the general direction and figured I’d see it, which I did after saying Hi to Dennis Wilkerson who was guarding the controls.
15. Went SW to avoid the fight. (Later learned that others went N right through the fight without problems.) Noticed that the back of the handle of my magnifier was missing. Stopped and went back a few yards to look for it, but couldn’t see it and went on. Blasted on a bearing from the T-intersection, identified the two thickets ahead, nailed it. Lost :30, half looking for my magnifier, half due to route choice.
16. Had planned to follow the ditch, which was probably the best route, but was just a few steps from the road, so took that E then cut S when I was across from the start.
17. Through the Finish, towards the bathroom, through the tunnel.
18. Back through the tunnel, tail ENE, curled around the thicket.
19. Thought about going to the street, but the bushes were too thick to get through, so ran parallel to the trail I’d come in on, then got on the trail just NE of the control. Cut left into a gap in the bushes thinking it was the path leading to the control, but quickly saw it wasn’t and corrected. Lost :10.
20, F: No need to look at the map as I’d already figured out where to go as I ran to #19.
My route is on the GetLost RouteGadget site
. However, I didn't draw my route leaving #6 correctly. I actually went SSE to the E-W trail.