PFO Training Weekend February 2017

The forecast wasn’t very promising at all, and sure enough as I arrived at the Newby Bridge YMCA on Friday evening I was met by the familiar sound of rain. Settled into the accommodation no problem, and it turned out that we were the only group in this massive complex of huts and adventure equipment right by Windermere. Friday evening was spent getting settled in and eating dinner which as it turned out was the only one I needed to cook as all other meals were catered, which was a nice surprise.

After tea Gillan gave us the low down of events for the following day and then there was an excellent game of Trivial Pursuit with some outrageous cheating.

Low cloud and rain greeted us the following morning and we used some of the centre’s permanent controls as well as some of our own ones and did plenty of orienteering exercises including placing controls as well as completing a course which I think everyone found useful, I know I did. Oddly enough, the rain calmed down after an hour or so and so it wasn’t unpleasant at all.

There was a theory session in the afternoon with a lot of symbol recognition work which was also very useful, then some people went off to a competition night time event but the people who stayed had tea and then did their own night time event around the YMCA buildings area. Even though it was only a fairly small area, the mist was down so it was still a challenge.

More trivial pursuit  followed, with the competition participants returning at about 10pm with tales of heavy mist and mud but they seemed happy enough, maybe they were just happy to be somewhere dry !

Next day everyone participated in the event at Biglands which was very well attended even though the weather wasn’t too inviting, but the rain never got too heavy and at least it wasn’t misty. I really enjoyed the course and tried to use what Judith had tried to drill into my head the previous day with some success, although one particular control threw me, the description being ‘between 2 hills’ but when I eventually found it, the ‘hills’ were about 2 feet tall. I had to laugh. I did enjoy my cup of chocolate after the event and thanks to Debra for giving me a lift to and from Biglands.

Great weekend for social and orienteering reasons, if not for my sadly fading tan. Thanks to Gillian and Judith for infinite patience.


02nd Mar 17  by Kate Willis