I’ve been having a quiet orienteering summer between cataract ops, so being keen to keep the fitness and nav going, I was pleased to see Devon O have laid on some training events which will be available until next year.
So far Graham, Lola the cockapoo and I have visited three out of the four excellent open moorland areas with Jim supporting and providing the post-run ice creams.
Haytor was the first (note there is a car park charge - details are at Car Parks | Dartmoor) followed by Five Tors 75’ Score, a new area to me, then the ever tricky Holne Moor. Golden Dagger is the next and looks to be a fitting finale.
In at the deep end, we took on the Long technical courses and found them to be challenging but fair. The lack of kites certainly focusses the concentration but there was always a reassuring beep on my Garmin and Graham’s mobile. On the ground, the bracken has shot up in places since the planning, so the straight line option on one or two legs is best avoided. One or two sites are also affected but we managed to get the beep without necessarily seeing the feature!
If you want some great training exercises get on down there and I would recommend doing a bit of geeking at the results tracks that runners have already laid down. Especially note that on Five Tors the maprun map and paper map show a slight difference with control 46 - the folks at Devon may fix this before you get there. Results can be seen following the link here: Access to Results - MapRun®
Here is a section from the Holne Moor Long Course, they have been so enjoyable I’m tempted to revisit the areas for the Short courses - maybe two in a day…
@BrianJP thanks for this - I have a week in Dartmoor planned starting on Sunday, so I will make sure to print off some maps before I set off!
Nice one @daylightgambler it will be good to hear how you get on. We went down on separate days downloading the MapRun courses each time from home.
The mobile signal at the Holne Moor car park was non existent and problematic for some, so it may be best for people to try downloading their courses, if doing more than one, in advance. I think my Garmin can store more than one for future use.
R and I went down to Golden Dagger today along with 20 or so Devon regulars - Phil came along a little later so we had already started and missed him early on- we caught up later when he finished as we were leaving the pub ( rehydration and socialising purposes only obv)
Steve the planner warned of rampant bracken growth affecting parts of the courses ( we both did the technical short) but to be honest I found the going a hell of a lot easier than here last year ( a few weeks later in the year) when bracken in many areas was literally up to one’s neck and controls a complete lottery. Today after a showery start turned to gorgeous warm sunshine and delightfully technical navigation ( given no control flags to aim for)
I found them all, some with more than a little dithering, and one early on completely overshot ( see my track for details) and really enjoyed the day- time 1:33 for actual distance covered about 6km!!!
The bracken at Golden Dagger today was taller than me !
I enjoyed it, but I spent at least 30 mins of my 2 hours untangling the dog lead from the bracken (and waiting for the dog to finishing drinking stagnant pools!)
Just watched the Long replay and it looks like the bracken is everywhere compared to the other areas
Thinking about having a go at Golden Dagger, how does the bracken compare to Holne Moor? Will it be a case of Golden Machete?!
I did holne moor on Monday in the beautiful sunshine without the weekend crowds- it’s a bit gorsey in places but hardly any bracken compared to GD which to be honest was pretty horrible in places making control location a lottery- that said, it wasn’t as bad as it was last year though
Thanks GD can wait until it dies back then, there are still plenty of options with the other areas