This past weekend my brother-in-law David and I (Nature Calls) raced the FLX 4-hour adventure run at Little Big Econ State Park.
The race had us looking for as many of the 35 total controls as we could find. There were 22 controls located north of the Econ river, and the rest were south of the river. David and I decided to try and get as many of the control on the north side as we could, and if possible, a few of the ones south.
We started off great, finding CP01 by shooting a bearing to it from the trail directly south of the control. Our bearing took us directly to the control with no issues. From there we bushwacked west to try and pick up the main trail were CP02 was on.
As you can see on our race route (map at the bottom of post, green line), we came out on to the trail and started to head south to look for CP02, but suddenly we came across a trail intersection that was not on the map. We were both confused as to exactly where we were (not realizing we were right next to CP02). So we decided to head north to try and get our bearings. Soon enough we came across the park boundary fence and knew we were near CP03.
We decided to not backtrack to CP02. There were plenty of controls to get, and we wanted to keep moving forward. We picked up CP03 through CP15 with little issue. We did skip CP04 because it was out of the way and not worth the time it would have taken. There was some really cool bushwhacking and some great control locations. Our navigation was excellent. I navigated half of the race, and then David navigated the other half.
After CP15 I suggested we should head to the bridge and cross the river so we could try and get a handful of the controls south of the river. But, as we neared the bridge, I started to realize we would not really have much time. We had about an hour left of racing. So we decided to backtrack and pick up controls CP17-22 on our way to the finish.
Again, CP17 through CP21 were fairly easy for us to find. But we were not able to find CP22. The clue said the control was located along the dry creek. So we took that literally and actually walked on the very twisty and small creek looking for the control. After a while we had to turn around because we were running out of time. Turns out the control (from what I understand) was visible from the trail just west of the creek. Oh well.
We ran to the finish line and made it in just 1 minute before the 4-hour cut off.
We collected 18 controls in 3:59, which was enough to give us the 1st place win. Not a bad day, especially considering we really should have found at least two more controls (CP02 and CP22). But that's racing!
We had a great time and I think David picked up a lot of good navigating and orienteering tips.
Can't wait for the Father's Day Adventure Race!