Senior Home International, Individual, Sep 8 2018
Date of event: Sat 08th Sep 18
Type of event: National (B)
Nearest town: Hurstwood, Burnley
England Team Manager's report detailing the competition from the competitor's point of view, and the overall team result, can be found here.
Hurstwood is a complex area, intricate spoil heaps separated by rough moorland, awkward to maintain quality of planning throughout. The M21E course was designed and test run in Sept 2017, and used all sections of the area. Any longer course would not have improved the quality. ELT looked to be 85-88 mins, though the course was shortened slightly in final planning. The actual winning time of 82 mins was very impressive indeed. The top women also finished well inside their ELT, their course could have been longer but was set to the correct M21E ratio. Feedback from download was that SHI finishers were completely exhausted, and had found the courses very tough going. The final loop on M21E appeared to really stretch tiring minds and bodies. I suspect the courses were tough enough for everyone.
The trickiest section was probably 1-2 (2-3 on W20E), a long leg in the ‘dunes’, coming early in the race, very hard to maintain map contact at any speed; I saw plenty of re-location happening here. The Cant Clough area to the east gave lovely control sites and intricate micro-routing (and an amazing viewing platform from the track to the N!). Shedden Ridge, the big hill leading to the S section, was always going to be rough and tough, with one or other of the two small tracks helping those who found them. I wonder if anyone on M21E tried the E route to the edge of the map: it looks a credible least-climb option for a strong hill runner.
I tried to provide challenge on every leg, even if parts included some unavoidable dead running. I hope the technical sections N, E and S gave everyone some high quality and intricate contoured O – and a few headaches!
Lastly, I’d like to thank NWOA and PFO for giving me the rare chance to plan the SHI Individual and Relays. Huge thanks also to George C-S and Tony Thornley for their help and advice with the courses and Helen Ashton and her team for delivering the event. I hope you all enjoyed competing as much as I did planning the event.
Martin Wilson (BKO) – Planner.
I would like to thank the following people, without whom the event would not have been a success.
Firstly Martin Wilson who planned, in conjunction with Tony Thornley (controller), the SHI Individual and National courses, all of them very testing. Also thanks goes to Martin for planning the SHI relay and L'Etape du SHI relay courses, which were controlled by Steve Wilson. Also thanks goes to Judith Wood for planning the Yellow and Orange courses. Many comments I heard mentioned, on both days, was that the area was tough - but that is the nature of the area and terrain.
This event could not have occurred without permission from Micheal Holmes (tenant farmer), United Utilities, the landowner, and the blessing of Natural England. Also thanks to Neil Worswick for the use of his field for car parking, which stood up to the task despite the heavy rain on the Saturday.
I am also indebted to the volunteer helpers who have given up their time to make the event happen on the day.
This took a lot of teamwork and included helpers not only from PFO but our neighbouring club SELOC. I am personally extremely grateful for all of the people who helped. I cannot list you all, but we couldn’t have put on this event without your unfailing enthusiasm and efforts. This is especially so in the awful Saturday weather conditions.
Helen Ashton - Organiser
Pre-event information below here:
SHI = Senior Home International
This is a closed event for teams representing England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
See also Hurstwood National Event, classic long distance, following the SHI. Open to all.
Planner: Martin Wilson BKO
Organiser: Helen Ashton PFO
Controller: Tony Thornley AIRE
Contact: For general enquiries -
Info for dog owners
This is sheep country. Absolutely no dogs in the competition area.
Click the image for a larger version.
About the area/map
The Hurstwood map covers 12 sq km from Hurstwood Reservoir to Cliviger wind farm. The area has been used for orienteering on and off since the first map was produced from a photogramatic plot in 1989. Unfortunately the origins of the map pre-date modern methods and only paper copies existed. Today's map has been digitally recreated with the benefit of OCAD, Lidar and GPS, and has been progressively resurveyed from 2012 to 2018.
It is a large area of moors, reservoirs and a complex maze of spoils, large and small, from old mineral workings. Unusual features include horizontal spurs, originally spoil tips, and lines of cannonball-sized stones which are slow to run along. Shaley areas that do not impede the runner are not marked. In many of the unworked areas there is tussock grass, shown on the map with the wide undergrowth symbol, which is generally very slow to run. The edges of theses areas are indistinct and should not be relied upon for navigation. The area is 95% open moorland where contour interpretaion and compass work are the key navigational skills.
We are idebted to the land owners, United Urtilities, the tenant farmer Michael Holmes, and Natural England for permission to hold events on this South Pennines SSSI area. Sensitivities to nesting birds, peat hags and bogland are observed.
Cliviger Hushings: Glacial eratic limestone boulders, originating from Yorkshire, littered this gritstone area like manna from heaven. Naturally the locals made good use of this gift, leaving behind the lime extraction spoils. Lime extracted by this method was used in agriculture and for building in earlier centuries.
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Posted by George Crawford-Smith