Virginia and I walked the 6 hour Rogaine near Batemans Bay on the weekend.
The weather was fantastic with a coolish breeze keeping temperatures under control, especially during the long steep uphill climbs.
A few weeks back I had asked Virginia if she wanted to have a bush walk near the coast and she happily said yes, but wasn’t quite enthusiastic once she found the rogaine website and started reading about the event.
I assured her we would only walk at a comfortable pace… of course even comfortable pace after some hours becomes uncomfortable.
Here is how the Saturday unfolded:
We had to do our staple Epic market shopping at 7:30 and have the traditional coffee with market friends until 9am, luckily I had packed the car full of our camping gear and walking pack with water and essentials on Friday 11pm, all we had to do was organize some food, hang the washing etc…. The race rego started at 9am and most people would have been there early to collect their maps to start planning the routes for best check-pooint collection options.
By the time we got to registration it was just after 11am and the event started at 12pm, this meant I had to rush the maps a little and miss most of what was said in the race briefings, completed the marking of our map and handed in our flight-plan in time but still laminating the last map while everyone was lining up to start….ooops, cutting it fine.
The gun goes and everyone is off, half the field runs and the others walk, plus half the field is going out for 12 hour while we do the 6 hour event.
The first few check-points are harmless, with a little question mark on the location of #47 which we got on the way out of the bush when finally finding a marked road that wasn’t really visible from the main fire-road entry. Still on schedule around 2pm.
Then we hit the rough stuff heading down to check-point #72, where we hunted for ways to get through some seriously thick sticky and prickly bush. Virginia was starting to ask herself why she was out there and we’d only been going for 2 hours, asking me if we should turn back but we had committed too far down a steep hill to turn back so we persisted, and once through the rough stuff if took only a slight deviation left for us to hit the CP#72 spot on. This jungle had put us behind schedule by 30+ minutes within one kilometer. I really hoped we’d had the worst of the jungle.
Wish we had had more time at registration and had heard them tell us where exactly those jungle spot where to avoid 🙂
Luckily the jungle subsided into rough bush and it was a straight’ish walk to #64, even though, after the event, my GPS log showed it slightly away from the marked position on the map, we got it on one go.
Our entry to CP #65 was slightly off to the right and bit further than I had hoped and that added another 30 or so minutes to our “behind” schedule making it time to shortcut back to the Hash-House (start/finish location). Exit bush to the nearest track, joining it at 5:15pm, and having to hot foot it out to the finish, even adding some shuffles on downhills to do the last 4.5km within the 45 minutes we had left, before we started loosing points (i.e. you loose 10 points for each minute you are late past the 6 hour mark).
We got back to the Hash-House with 9 minutes to spare, so we jogged passed to collect a 30 pointer (CP#33) that was 50 meters up the road and made it to the finish with 4 minutes spare… woohooo!
About 210 points less then I had planned, but very respectable for the conditions and Virginia being a novice first timer.
Maybe not the easiest location for a first time rogainer…..oops.
We ended up in 17th overall, 11th in the open mixed, 4th in the veterans and 2nd in the super veterans with 479 points and 5:56 hours time.