Orienteering 1:16:17  *** 5.33 km (14:19 / km) +185m 12:12 / km
spiked:8/17c shoes: 200712 NB Absorb EX 11.5
The US Middle Distance Championships: my first A meet competition. I was very excited about this meet, but my expectations were not absurdly fanciful. Since Ross and Brendan are fast, reliable, and generally attend the meets I go to, I'm planning to use them as a metric for my progress this year. My target was to finish before twice their average time had elapsed. They finished in 38 and 43 minutes respectively, so that was a reasonable goal.
The course was excellent; well placed controls, good route choice possibilities, and excessively large hills/gorge banks. The underbrush was very light; the most difficult running obstacle was a large number of fallen trees.
I was pleased with my navigation except for three major controls: 4, 13, and 15. Control four was in a ditch, and I approached from too low. When I circled back around, I was too high and missed the ditch. Jon Torrence arrived at control four at about the same time and also overshot; I ended up scrambling partway up a hill to locate it, wasting time and energy.
On control thirteen, I stupidly thought that a few adults were going in the same direction I was and paid inadequate attention to my compass bearing. As a result, I plowed through substantial striped green and hit control 14 before 13. I didn't realize it was 14, so I wasted about ten minutes circling north and hitting two lakes about 300 m north of my control.
On control fifteen - a long leg, I drifted north of the trail I was aiming for and ended up wading through a non-trivial marsh. I was out of contact after the marsh, and reoriented when I hit the north end of a large clearing just past 15. I estimate this was a five minute error.
I had strong splits on controls 6 and 7, and on others - 11 and 12 - while my navigation was sound, I moved too slowly. In general, I am unreliable; my success on a control is some superposition of running fast or slowly and navigating well or poorly.
So: overall, a not bad first showing, but I have much, much training to do. A good day for CSU; especially good showing from Ross, Alex, and Brendan. A nice chap near registration gave me some sunscreen, diminishing the quality of my burn.
Orienteering (Sprint-O) 20:09  *** 2.6 km (7:45 / km)
spiked:11/13c shoes: 200712 NB Absorb EX 11.5
A bonus sprint-O at the meet. Ross and Will Hawkins, among others were extremely fast. Sprint-O is a lot of fun; because it is so short, you can really push physically.
My run was uneventful (if slower than I would have liked) apart from a significant error near control four. I approached from a building near control 12 (for those of you who did sprint 3). However, I came out too far to the west - to the west of control four is a marsh. I realized my position quickly, and made to cross the marsh. Unfortunately, the marsh was over knee deep in places, and about ten meters wide. My detour through the marsh probably cost me about two minutes. I was also a little shaken up going to control 5, but reestablished myself afterwards.
A very well designed course - lots of spectating opportunities.