Planner’s comments now added below.
Well, what a great day! Lots of you tempted out by the fabulous weather to one of our trickiest areas – nearly 130 entries. And welcome to a regular stream of newcomers today! I hope you’ll come again.
I hadn’t organised at Pretty Corner before, and I hadn’t realised how tricky parking would be. So thank you all for your patience with parking marshals, in future I would try to have 2 marshals available.
After an initial slow response, we got enough helpers to cover all the jobs so things ran smoothly. Thank you all for your contribution. We do seem to see the same faces time and again, and a few of us are getting older! So new helpers are always made welcome – as well as getting a reduced entry fee.
It takes a bit of juggling to organise when you’ve got an attention-hungry (and just plain hungry) dog in tow, so again thanks to those who helped join the dots. And the dog says thanks for the treats.
Firstly, I would recommend planning an event to anyone that hasn’t already done so.
REASON #1 to plan an event – it’s fun! Sure it is a lot of work, and issues do crop up, but ultimately, when it all comes together on the day, and you get good feedback, it’s all worth it.
On that note, thank you to everyone who took the time to say that they enjoyed the courses.
This was my first attempt at planning an event (technically second, but Wymondham College was pulled at short notice in the summer). Kim asked me back then if I’d like to do another event, hopefully with more luck this time. It was only after I said yes, that I found out it was to be at Pretty Corner. An area I’d never been to before, because I avoided it due to all the contours. Which. I. Just. Don’t. Understand.
But Kim told me that planning here would help, and she was right. It was when the two of us were looking for a pit, that I said to her that going by the map, we must be too far up the slope. See…you’re getting it, she said, and I realised that I was. REASON #2 to plan an event – it will improve your orienteering. It is a lot harder to work out where you are when there are no kites around to confirm it.
I had a wander around the area twice by myself to do some armchair planning before Kim came along to help me out. I should at this point say HUGE thanks to both Kim and Tim, who have helped me immensely over the last couple of months.
And all was going well until two weeks before the event when, while checking my tags, Tim discovered that felling had started in the southeast quarter of the map. (Felling that occurs for six weeks every ten years). Cue emergency meeting in a pub after the SUFFOC King’s Forest event. At that point we didn’t know precisely what the extent of the felling would be, so we removed a few controls in that SE area, and I altered the courses that were affected. Then we waited for an official answer from the owners of the woodland.
Cue another emergency meeting on the Tuesday before, in the ski club bar. REASON #3 to plan an event – lots of emergency meetings in pubs!
Alan had been up to Pretty Corner and found that the felling was a bit further into the centre of the map than we had hoped for. So we had to remove another control which affected all of the longer courses, and re-jig them again. We had to cut the brown course at this point, as there was no way we could get the length required, even with the climb involved.
We finally had some courses that we were happy with, given the limitations of the felling. Kim and Tim put out over half on the controls on the Saturday afternoon, as I was at work (thanks again), and I joined them to put out the remainder on the Sunday morning. Thanks to the guys who helped me get the controls back in. And again, if you’re thinking of trying planning for the first time, give it a go, you’ll get plenty of help and will enjoy it. I did.