The second day, Saturday, was the National Middle Distance champs and let's be honest here...arriving at the event centre I was feeling pretty intimidated. There were these huge cliff faces stretching across the terrain and in the distance we could see the odd control flag. Plus it looked steep, rocky and intense! I warmed up with a few of the other elite girls while trying to remain calm. It was hard, especially when we saw one of the early W21E girls heading up some rather steep hill straight from the start triangle.
Actually, the first control wasn't too bad except for trying to find a way up amongst the clif faces and the adreniline got me up the hill. Fairly easy control too thank goodness. I struggled a little on #2 'cause I got confused with all the little valleys I seemed to cross that I couldn't see on the map. Found the track and worked backwards.
The next few were okay due to the fact that there were giant cliff structures to navigate to and around. Then came #6 where I ran up the wrong valley and got stuck in some gorse. #7 - don't follow anyone even if you know they are better orienteers than you, especially if you think they are wrong. They ran up towards the major cliffline and I nearly followed them all the way up before thinking that looked so wrong that it wasn't funny. It was further over like I thought.
After that I upped the pace to keep in touch with the other elite girl and some of the M20A guys. The controls weren't too hard but it was pretty physical and I was tired. Controls were fine apart from a bit of a shaky #13. But on my way to the finish I almost missed out #17 (the final control). What was I thinking!
Wicked terrain and fun course but I had my brain and my legs switched off for too much of it. Damn.