Yesterday evening I went along to a training session of our local orienteering club – Heming/NjÃ¥rd O-Lag. The training session was held on the 1:5,000 map of the area surrounding Rikshospitalet, just 10 minutes run from home and conveniently also the area to be used for the first Oslo Cup race next Tuesday. The club is relatively small but has a strong junior section, particularly in the girls. There are no elite men and the older members seem happy devoting their time to training the younger club members. Tonight was mass start/relay training and consequently I found myself lined up for a race alongside the club’s finest.
Things didn’t start well as I’d failed to realise that the map was drawn to the sprint racing spec and hence all the brown lines around the start were just unpaved footpaths. After about three controls I’d finally made it to the front of the pack. With lots of tracks I could make the most of my running speed and the navigation was much as you’d have in an park race back home. It being training, myself and another guy stopped half way round to let everyone catch up and restart the chase. At the finish I had to confess that if it were a race I should be disqualified having cut through a scrubby patch between houses that was marked as a “forbidden area”.
Anyway, it was a fun way to spend half an hour on a beautifully sunny evening. The club seems very friendly but, as Christine and I have to take it in turns to stay at home with Emma, we’ll have to decide whether we should join a bigger club with more training sessions per week.