Norwegian Spring H55 (23/04/2016)
Category: Competition
Map/area: Skårefjell
Organiser: Halden/Sarpsborg
Distance: 3.55 km
Time: 23:48
Average HR: 162
Maximum HR: 180
My best race in a couple of years, i.e. since before my ankle injury. :-)

Easy contour/direction orienteering up to #1, I hesitated a few seconds near the edge of the control circle because the contour mapping was doubtful there, but kept on and hit it nicely, just 7 seconds behind the fastest split.

#2 was very good, just follow the white/south compass needle and look for fast micro-routes. I won this split and took over the lead in the race, a lead I kept to the end.

Good direction running to #3, kept the speed up even when going through the surprisingly dense green patch before the control and hit it perfectly. 2 sec behind the best split.

To #4 I intentionally started with a left curve in order to follow the contours, avoid the marsh below and hit the path near the bend. Followed the path until it turned downhill and contoured into the control. 6 sec behind the best split here.

I was worried about the uphill running to #5. I intended to bypass all the cliffs to the right but when I spotted the mapped opening and realized that it would be a quite fast scramble up there I went straight which made the control very easy. This was my second split time win today.

Contoured to #6, direction running to #7.

#8 was my only mistake today: I could not decide if it would be faster to run around on the path or to go straight, but when I hit the path the forest in front of my looked so nice that I decided to try the shortest route. The problem was that the final yellow marsh just before the control had a very indistinct upper limit: Even though I had hit it perfectly the marsh above me seemed to be just as open/yellow as the part below, this made me hesitate quite a bit at this point before going into the control. At the same time it turned out that the flag was easily visible from quite a distance for the runners who took the path route, this meant that I lost 41 sec to my club mate Sören J on this split, 20+ seconds of this was due to the hesitation, the rest was probably because I left #7 in a slightly wrong direction when I tried to avoid the wet marshes: Keeping closer to the line would have given me a better location to climb out of the first little valley with the stream.

Going uphill on the path to #9 I got some payback from the involuntary slowdown into #8, in the form of my third and last split time win of the day.

The last pair of controls were pure running.

7:14 min/km is definitely the fastest I've been on a forest race in a few years, and my orienteering was pretty close to perfect except for that route I took to #8. :-)
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Norwegian Spring H55 (23/04/2016) Norwegian Spring H55 (23/04/2016)