…it fell off my radar – don’t know why….

A visit to the Lakes & we had the opportunity to do a Lakeland Orienteering Club event on Birkett Common & Wharton Fell.

It’s got to be at least 15 years since I last orienteered, so I got all the stuff out of ‘the spotty bag’ – yup all still there – ripped/faded clothes – compasses – dibbers – whistles

Double checked with Joy & Ian about how to set the map – moment of panic crossed both their faces…just a flash… I was only just checking – honest 😉

Registered (got the dibbers the right – and they still worked)

Ummed and ahhed about which course & plumped for the Green – a short technical course. I always used to do a green – I’d don my walking boots and march round going (as much as possible) in a straight line from point to point. Of course I run now, so a longer course did cross my mind… as it turned out it was probably just as well I didn’t :-/

So it was 4.7k of up (210m climb) & down and marshy bits – and (I have to say) a stunning view on a glorious day

Wee’d – wouldn’t be the same without the visit to the wobbly port-a-loo balanced conveniently close to registration 😉

Off to the start – I dunno – started to feel really nervous…. I carefully stepped around and over the damp muddy bits and we made our way down the gully and over the ridge to the start.


I ‘may’ have mentioned to a few people that I’d not done it in a while… 😀 😀 😀

Into the start box & I was off… managed to set off in the right direction and found the first control ok… phew…that was ok… set off to the next & came in low & short – got distracted by Dave (we had a conversation along the lines of “are you lost yet?”) I put myself right and made it to the second.

I was doing alright then until disaster struck on my way to number 8 (about half way)

I went in far too high & completely missed the control – I knew I was wrong (there was no-one else around – bit of a hint there – but I ploughed on anyway…talking to myself – telling myself I was wrong…) I had to confirm where I was, which meant getting to the wall (ish) so I could put myself right.

Managed to get to 8 after a bit of a palaver & then it was ok to the end


This is control 14 – I had to just stop and look as it was just such a lovely view


It was a relief to run on the road a bit to the last control & to get over the finish.

My Garmin told me I’d run 4.9k (probably right) in 49 mins – most definitely wrong – note to self – turn off auto pause …. :-/

The reality was that I took 88 mins – for my stupid mistake (because I did run!)

Still I’m pleased I got round. I did think it would be a bit like trail running, but it’s far more difficult – terrain is challenging in places – marsh – bracken – heather – brashings – long grass – mud. … I got really wet feet, so don’t know why I bothered on the way to the start – took 2 days for the shoes to dry out!

It’s called the ‘thought sport’ because it’s far more than just getting your head down and running… I hoped I would have done better, bearing in mind

  • I run
  • I’m fitter

However….due to

  • Getting lost I came in 3rd from the bottom – usual position – oh well – it wasn’t a DNF!!!

Upshot is though – I’ve signed up to do another event now as I really enjoyed myself & I genuinely don’t know why we stopped 🙂



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