[Empire Orienteering Club]

Grafton Lakes State Park
October 13, 2003

As has been the case in recent years, this Columbus Day's orienteering event was no different and once again rewarded EMPO with a solid turnout of young and old, novice and experienced participants. We were pleased to see many familiar faces, and likewise to meet new folks, all ready to be challenged by the O courses that Rob set on the Grafton trail network and back woods terrain. Fall foliage of bronze, gold, and orange was abundant, and the temperature was near perfect for comfortable orienteering.

As evidenced by the results attached, we had an unusually large number of Orange (intermediate level) participants. Some teens from the Berne-Knox-Westerlo schools have progressed to this level, and some other advanced-beginner folks apparently decided that it was time to test their orienteering skills beyond what Yellow may have demanded from them in previous meets. No doubt some of the participants would say that Orange can be and was challenging. In talking with one of the individuals who made it about two thirds of the way through the Orange course but was unable to complete it, Rob reassuringly stated, "Yes, advancing to Orange is almost like moving up two levels".

With all due respect, even the Yellow course can provide more of a challenge than may be bargained for. For example Kath Scheib discerned after starting out on Yellow with her group of several youngsters that they may be in 'over their heads'. And so she reconnoitered, returned to registration with her group, copied the White course, and proceeded to satisfactorily complete that level.

For many new orienteers, carrying out the decision to progress from doing a course with others to attempting it solo can also present a new challenge. Such was the case for Stephen Samela, who, on Columbus Day, independently completed his first Yellow course. But he did have his father, Brian, a bit concerned considering nearly two hours had passed and there was still no sign of the young orienteer. Brian decided to go out on Stephen's course, in reverse order, and before long, both returned and Stephen was indeed okay, just 'needed to use his compass a little more often', stated Brian.

Advanced orienteers, who ventured into the southeastern section of the Park, had their own share of challenges as they scrambled up, under, around and through blow-downs. They also noted that the map does need some updating, which we've known for some time. We'll just have to look forward to the next A-meet at Grafton and hope for those revisions.

If the above folks claimed to have fun, we must add that humans were not the only ones to enjoy Monday's meet. We even had a jubilant Golden Retriever team up with some of the Berne youth as they navigated their Yellow course around Shaver Pond. Of course, when they got back to the registration area with 'Fido' tagging along, no one knew to whom this beautiful dog belonged. He was in fact quite content to stay with his new friends, enjoying an occasional pretzel. Communication with the Park Staff revealed that he did indeed live to the west and north of Shaver Pond and was eventually returned to his rightful home by the Park Naturalist and Superintendent.

In closing, we would like to extend sincere thanks to all those who helped make the meet a success. Special thanks to Reid Smalley and Jack Norray, Sr who spent time copying additional Orange-course maps, and to everyone who helped with control pick-up: Barb Sleight (CNYO), Glen and Janet Tryson, Phil and Sue Hawkes-Teeter and teens, and to our Adirondack Orienteering Club friends, Maryanne and Bill, David and Brian Ellsworth.

-- Rob and Rita Reed

White Course
David & Brian Ellsworth (2) 19:36
Alan Dunlavey group (3) 45:44
Gabriel Holedak group (2) (2nd course) 63:37
Sarah Levine 69:48
Kath Scheib group (5) (2nd course) 71:70
Yellow Course
Anna Kusler 52:00
David & Brian Ellsworth (2) 2nd course 55:45
Julie Stenken 70:14
Debra Batcher group (3) 70:47
Christina Cole group (3) 75:36
Martin Engstrom-Heg group (3) 77:50
Sue Wells group (9) 85:15
Ryan Wasko 85:44
Trout group (2) 89:17
James Torriani 95:30
Brenda Potter group (12!) 113:50
Stephen Samela 143:20
Maria Dunlavey HFA
Kath Scheib group (5) HFA
Gabriel Holodak group (2) HFA
Orange Course
Jason Norray 85:20
Zach Holbus 88:23
Brian Samela 98:02
Sam Carlson 100:25
Chris Hartnett 113:44
Bob Wright 129:27
Chris Ryan/Phil Kramer (2) 144:48
Maryanne Ellsworth group (2) 147:32
Stefan Bagnato group (2) 180:30
Ashley Willsey 181:44
Andrea Tobin 200:10
Pat Tobin group (2) 213:45
Felix Rosa group (3) 227:00
Beth Gurzler HFA
Tom Madison HFA
Greg Zink HFA
Mitch & Eileen Hansen (2) HFA
Brown Course
Heather Williams 99:52
Barb Sleight 123:24
Bob Goodwin 127:43
Green Course
Jack Norray Jr. 89:05
Robert Lange 96:50
Janet Tryson 106:15
Lyn Walker 116:46
Eric Hamilton 127:38
Sue Hawkes-Teeter HFA
Red Course
Pat Dunlavey 81:07
Glen Tryson 86:12
George Walker 97:10
Phil Hawkes-Teeter 124:48
Glenn Orlosky 143:11
Jeffrey Hartnett 166:00
Reid Smalley 220:18
Mike Hartnett HFA
Marty Hawkes-Teeter HFA
David Levine HFA
* HFA = Had Fun Anyway

last updated: --Thu May 27 2004 07:58:28 PM EDT--