LOC Northern Nights Champion !

Wed 20 Feb 2019

Congratulations to Charlotte Somers-Cocks on her success at the Northern Night Champs last Saturday on Ilkley Moor ! 1st overall on the Short Green course and winner of the W55+ class ! Charlie has written the following report of the night's fun:

There is something about night orienteering that inspires me and in my drive home from Cunsey last Wednesday I was thinking what it was. I have always enjoy orienteering because of being able to combine the intellectual challenge of the map reading together with the freedom of running/cycling in terrain. At night however it highlights the need for technically good navigation as the whole world is just your small patch of light in front of you. It makes me work hard at the navigation but I get a real buzz whenever amazingly the control emerges into my pool of light where I am expecting it!

I have not been that well for the past couple of weeks - a cold that has lingered on in the form of a cough. So it is great when you feel healthy again and The Colonel’s Drive event had marked that point. At the start at Ilkley I could see that there was a fair amount of bracken so I took a path route for most of the way to the first control and a gorse bush thicket made for a good attack point into a marsh. The marsh was quite runnable and so foolishly I headed out on a bearing picking up a small trod through the bracken on the far side. This disappeared to nothing so I was left wishing I had taken the path option. I think I lost a bit of time here although I still had the fastest split.

For the next few controls there were some obvious paths that could be used before “wading” though the bracken the last bit to the control. Whilst I did not have the fastest splits on all of these this was probably more due to if you were lucky to pick up a trod going through in the direction you wanted. The only poor route choice I made was to the 4th control in the wood where I should have headed into the top of the wood as it was extremely runnable and would have bumped into my control as I ran down the ridge. I took some paths parallel with it and then had to judge when to contour across through bracken which I did judge correctly but my guess is that it was slower by about 30 seconds.

After this control I saw no one as I seemed to have got ahead of the people starting in front of me. I enjoyed the second half of the course with some more intricate path networks and keeping track of where you were was key to a smooth run. I think we had one of the technically better courses. I would enjoyed it if the course had been a bit longer and had taken us into the challenging rocky terrain slightly east but a good event overall.


The link to Routegadget so you can see Charlie's course is here.

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