Winter Warmer   Wilverley    Feb 19


A few photos from Chris Branford


 Planner's Comments
I made twelve visits to the area, visited every control at least 3 times and walked circles around each difficult control, re-dug depressions, cleared obstructions, walked 23 kms one day and only on the morning of the event noticed I had mapped control 160 in slightly the wrong place when I could exactly see other control site flags and take accurate Bearings. Three courses approached the control from the south around the hill as the best possible route, the green course would have seen hide on the route to it. I wonder if many people would have noticed it if we hadn’t informed them at the starts. Still it was my fault so very sorry.

Also, one of the last control boxes 138 for the run to the finish was not synchronised with the other controls and was put out a little after the start and was running we think about 20 seconds behind the other box so apologies to those who thought they beat the fast finishers on the long run in, you still might have done but without investigating the last control boxes and lots of manual adjustments to the times we are not sure. But as it does not affect your overall finish times, we have left run in times as they are.

I had great difficulty trying to add any longer legs on most courses as there are so many paths that would have been quicker to take that I added extra controls on courses to try to keep you in the best parts of the forest. If any of the senior courses kept using the paths it was not the quickest route.The winning times were correct in the BOF guidelines although it looks like a lot of competitors enjoyed the forest staying out longer than normal.

One of the short legs had a winning time of 37 secs with the longest taking over 11 mins. The New Forest is very confusing and talking to one competitor who came from Scotland he asked ‘how do we Orienteer in this open flat forest’Thanks to Julie Astin for all her help in controlling the event: she helped above and beyond the call of duty.Maybe that’s why we all enjoy it so much and keep coming back as we learn something new every day.

Kevin Pickering

Controller's Comments

First of all, I must mention what an enjoyable experience it was working with the Planner, Kevin Pickering, throughout the process as he was open-minded to any suggestions I may have made and was very professional and thorough in his planning.

There were a handful of issues that arose on the day, however: the main one being the mis-mapped location of control 160 (a hide). Unfortunately, this error was discovered too late for the maps to be amended and we considered the best solution was to inform all those affected (Short Green, Green, Blue and Brown) at the Start. Whilst for most competitors, this pre-warning seemed to be sufficient, there were some who were clearly unhappy - mainly, it seemed, because as although they found the control without any problems, they then proceeded to take an incorrect compass bearing to the next control (due to the mis-location on the map).

One competitor suggested that we should have moved the hide to the correct mapped location - a possibility had the hide not been so huge. Whilst it is regrettable that this oversight occurred (and I accept my share of the responsibility for this) all competitors had the same "disadvantage" - and some just coped with it better than others.

Regarding the confusion near control 141; the general consensus was that the mapping of the vegetation was rather misleading which led people onto the spur to the west of the control, which was off to the side of a re-entrant to the east. This will need to be addressed before the next event.

The final comment that I personally received from a few competitors on the Blue course was that there were too many controls, with no long legs - while an equal number of people actually preferred that! The reasoning behind the lack of long legs was the fact that the path network made it difficult to have such legs without leading to a lot of track running. 

I personally believe that, overall, Kevin did an excellent job on providing some challenging courses at all levels in such a confined area.

Julie Astin (WSX)