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Couch to 5K
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Oh Dear!! My third attempt at Orienteering!!

-- was not a success!! :(

I had done it two times before -- 4 & 5 klm courses in fairly open parks -- of course you have to run/walk much further than 4 & 5 K's to find all check points and complete the course.

But today's course was DIFFICULT!! Set in a huge parklands area - it was actually a small park alongside one huge swampy area in which there were few fully recognizable landmarks - be they natural or man made. But there were MANY narrow paths winding their way through this almost all natural terrain.. primarily you had to be VERY observant of every track you were running on and all the tracks that left the track you were on. Of course, the map is small - and my eyesight is not the best!! :( But I was doing OK - until I reached the point where I was going from point 8 to point 9. I could not make any sense out of the map -- so had to reverse my course to try to return to my last recognized point -- only I couldn't even back track What is wrong with this map!!!?????

I then realized that a 6 and a 9 are identical when the map is turned upside down -- and I had obviously been attempting to head for point 6 ( again) when I should have been heading for point 9 - no wonder the map wasn't making any sense. :( BUT -- by this time I was hopelessly lost and not only had no idea where I was but was lost inside a maze of paths and greenery that looked all the same - and there was nowhere I could find with a view that gave me some recognizable feature.

I eventually did find something recognizable -- my wife who was equally lost doing a short 2.2 Klm course!! :) Anyway - we did finally find our way out - but by this time, we were supposed to be finished and calling our friends to have lunch with them - so we had to abandon all -- I did check 10 out of the 20 checkpoints though ( two were found accidently while we were lost!!) -- got 90 minutes/running walking/scrambling through the bush in, so not all was doom and gloom. I will mark today down as an "Easy " day in my running log.

There is another one on in two weeks -- I wonder if I would look silly taking a magnifying glass along with me???

5 Replies

Lovely blog...and I love the bit where you found your wife!!! I would take about 3 hours to do that- I cannot read maps and I get lost constantly, so a huge well done from me, I'm very impressed 👍


Actually , Orienteering is a good woman's sport!! Why?? Because it is the only sport where you hold the map upside down -- or oriented in the direction you are going. All men know that women do this, hold a map this way -- whereas men hold maps with NORTH at the top. !! :) ( but that is not really possible in Orienteering - try it , you will see why!! :)


Oh Baz I can sympathise with you and that darned map! Who writes these ruddy things? We got lost on a recent hike and the map and instructions were kerapp. Bore no resemblance to what was happening on the ground. Tsk

Still, you got some good exercise there and lunch, so your time spent was not fruitless


Actually the map is very good - they have to be in Orienteering. Trouble is that the checkpoint numbers are printed with North at the top of the map -- but that is not how a map is held while Orienteering ( so checkpoint number 6 and 9 look identical depending on which way the map is being held -- I am certain it is one of those "traps for beginners" type situations!! :)


LOL!!! As someone who has been lost on a walk despite carrying GPS, OS map and compass, I can relate to this! We uploaded our route afterwards to google earth and it was hilarious!

Bet your wife was glad to see you! :)


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