Southern Michigan Orienteering Club's Results
43 runners in 22 groups (teams and solos) competed for the coveted “Night Owl” trophy in our annual SMOC Night-O at Pontiac Lake Recreation Area. This was the first time our club has used the land west of Teggerdine Rd., hopefully, this will be the first of many meets we will have there. The terrain is quite varied from lowland marshes to old farm fields to upland forests. A large percentage of the forests are open with fast running. The Huron River, whose source is only a mile north in the Great Huron Swamp in Indian Springs Metropark, bisects this part of the park from north to south. The river is mostly crossable, shin to thigh deep in most places, with a hard gravelly bottom. I set the course with no river crossings, but several runners decided to take an unanticipated shortcut (unanticipated to me) across a significant marsh. The weather was iffy through the afternoon with passing light drizzle from time to time. Just after the start, a snow shower briefly coated grassy areas with our first measurable snowfall of the year. After that, all rain and snow ended for the rest of the night. Temps were only 37F, but all competitors came back happy and warm from the physical exertion to hot chocolate and Mary Beth’s oatmeal cookies.
In the event which started at 6 p.m., there were 31 controls with point values from 30 to 70 totaling 1390 points. The time limit was 2 hours with a 40 point per minute overtime penalty. The straight line course length was estimated at 7.8 kM.
After a two-year hiatus because he was the meet director at the last two Night-O’s, a determined and focused Jens beat out Igor by just 8 minutes, both getting all 31 controls. Igor was the Night-O winner the last two years. Jens and Igor went in opposite loop directions, but with only minor variations, did the same control order. A number of other runners did extremely well, including the Greens (Cooper and Michelle, both going out solo), Tony Misovski, Joseph Burkhead, Oleg Koptelov, and Greg Gibbard. All competitors should be proud for having the adventurous spirit to undertake such a rare activity, even more so considering the non-ideal conditions.
I want to thank Dennis Elston for helping set up in the light drizzle and rain showers; my wife Mary Beth for helping with registration and refreshments; and Jens for going back out in the forest at 9 p.m. for control pickup.
|Melissa||Burns & Zach Johnson||390||390||118:05:00||
|Christine||Utter & Tyler Vincent||280||320||120:28:00||40,33,34,35,36,42,53,71|
|Greg||W. & Tony G.||230||230||111:38:00||
|Brendan||& Johanne Newell||160||160||105:26:00||32,34,35,33,40|