Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Yukon Orienteering Champs and Training Camp

Those who came to the Canadians last year will remember the two stellar maps produced for the events. This year, we got the opportunity to revisit the maps from a different angle. It was a week of great orienteering!

Wednesday night was the night of the long. As it was in the COCs, this race took place on the Carcross Desert map. We started from the parking lot guarding the largest patch of sand. I was running Expert, which was 5.5km and had 160m climb. My goals for this race were to picture the control circle, to use red light/green light when coming into a control and to to thumb along in order to maintain contact. I had a pretty good race. I was able to make good route choices for the bigger part, and I kept a reasonable pace. Admittedly, I had a few of “those” controls, most notably when I saw another competitor leaving a control, and deciding to take a short-cut. I think I need to start ignoring that little voice that encourages me to do that...

The start was just over the sand dune
Friday after school found most of the YOT members waiting for our coach at the Mt. Lorne Rec. Centre. We did a short practice, mimicking the relay at JWOC. We each got a map with 5 short courses on it. There was a lot of forking and controls close together to make you think twice. It was a lot of fun, and it got a lot easier towards the end in terms of ignoring what everyone else was doing.

Saturday dawned bright and early. While Brent set the controls for the second practice, we worked with precision bearings. At one point our bearings took us right over a rusting train! The next practice found us corridor orienteering. That same afternoon, we drove over to Lewes Lake. Last summer, I hadn't had the chance to explore the more technical stuff, so I was really excited. It turns out, I was able to keep on top of things, when I was walking. And as soon as I got lost, I had an extremely hard time getting back on track...

Everyone was a little tired at lunch time...
The training map...was easy to get lost on!

 Once we got back to our accommodation (yurts!) we went swimming and Brent lead us through some mental exercises in preparation for those going to JWOC.

Our yurt!!
We rejoined civilization the next day at the sprint, held at the other end of the Lewes Lake map. The landscape was similar to a moonscape. My assigned start was at the start of my category, with the other runners starting at 1 min intervals after me. I had a great race, except for one particular control. There was a loop off the go control, and while I subconsciously realized there was a loop off the go control, I didn't actually realize it. This resulted in my frantic panic as I didn't pay attention to my map, and ran in circles.
My sprint course
You can see my futile attempts to find the go control...

The middle started after a well needed rest. I managed to convince myself that if I went a little slower and stayed in control, then I would be all right. This strategy worked for the most part. I had a good couple first controls, was able to keep on track and planed out my routes. I had a couple of sticky controls, mostly not following through with my plans, and ending up a little off.  However, I was fairly happy with it overall.

The extremely technical middle!


  1. Jealous! Those maps are fantastic. And I've always wanted to stay in a yurt!

  2. Ditto on Carol's jealous comment! Looks like a fabulous Yukon champs and training camp!