Occassional thoughts about orienteering

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Lack of government support?


I went for a run on Wednesday. I ran at Clinton Lake. The federal government acquired the land at least 30 years ago. The land is publicly accessible. The federal and state governments have developed facilities - like shelters, restrooms, parking areas. Various organizations - mostly volunteers and non-profits, I'd guess - have built and maintained a great trail network. It is a fantastic resource...provided largely by government support.

I ran with an orienteering map. It's a map I fieldchecked. My base map was lidar data. The lidar data provide accurate and detailed contours and planimetric features. I got the lidar data online through the Kansas Data Access and Support Center. State government created that center. A company called Sanborn Mapping created the lidar data. Sanborn was working for a federal agency. The lidar data are all provided at no charge. It is a great deal.

From time to time, orienteers complain about a lack of government support for the sport. I think they usually mean that the sport doesn't get a lot of direct public money. But it always strikes me as too narrow a view. Orienteering gets lots of government support, as the example of last Wednesday's run illustrates.

I think it is just human nature to see barriers before (or instead of) opportunities and to take advantages as givens. I like to think that if we could change how we viewed our own situations, we'd be better able to take advantage of those opportunities. If only human nature didn't stand in the way!

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 10:42 AM


Saturday, April 24, 2010

Last weekend's 10-hours in Nebraska


Last weekend I ran the 10-hour score course at Indian Cave State Park in Nebraska. Maps are below.

The terrain is typical loess terrain. That means big, steep hills with some deep erosion features. Loess forest is generally fairly runnable. I say "generally" because it is also terrain that suffers when we get ice storms or very strong winds. Some parts of the Indian Cave terrain were quite difficult to run through because of downed trees.

We got the map an hour before the start so we had time to plan a route. I arrived about 20 minutes before the start, so I didn't do much planning. I took a quick look and decided I'd probably be able to get all of the controls and that the main choice was clockwise or counterclockwise. I decided on clockwise. I haven't studied the map, but I would guess there are better route options than the ones I picked.

The 10-hour event was the longest I'd ever done. I wasn't sure how to best manage it. I decided to jog easily when I was going flat or down a hill, walk on the uphills. That seemed to work well. I was quite tired for the last hour (I finished in just over 7 hours, so I'm sure being out for another 3 hours would have been really tough).

I ate several packs of gel, one pack of "sport beans", and a granola bar. I drank a bit of sport drink and plenty of water. In retrospect, I should have have a little bit more sport drink. To keep myself on track, I had a cheat sheet that I looked at each hour that reminded me how much I'd planned to eat at that point. I think carrying a cheat sheet was a good idea.

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 9:56 AM


Saturday, April 10, 2010

Today's stack of maps


I grabbed a stack of maps and went out for a longish run today. The idea was to do a little preparation for next weekend's 10 hour event at Indian Cave.

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I was out for 4 hours, mixing jogging and walking. Fun.

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 5:33 PM


Sunday, April 04, 2010

Score orienteering in Columbia, MO


I ran a score orienteering event at Rock Bridge park in Columbia, Missouri, yesterday. Here's the map:

The terrain is nice enough. The forest is mostly pleasant to run through. The hills aren't terribly big. There terrain has some variety.

The most interesting section of terrain is the karst area on the south edge of the map. It is a shame there isn't more of it. Here's a video that gives you a sense of the terrain around control 19.

Back to okansas.blogspot.com.

posted by Michael | 10:12 AM


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