October 30, 2018

Score meet in Sun Valley - Nov 11

For those of you who would like a do a little road trip, the Sun Valley Community School is putting on a score meet.
Date November 11
Location Greenhorn Gulch Trailhead (roughly 2 hrs, 45 minutes from Boise)
Map USGS???
Registration 9:15AM - 9:45AM
Start Staggered, first start 10AM
Format Score, 90 minute time limit

October 29, 2018

2018 Vampire-O Results

2018 Vampire-O Results

On an almost dark evening on October 20th almost thirty orienteers took off at the mass start heading out in all directions. Following behind several minutes later was one vampire in hunt of maps. We had a large turnout of new orienteer Boy Scouts who were already out on the course and not participating in the Vampire-O which confused things. Sorry for any confusion, I didn’t know they wouldn’t be competing normally. Thanks to John Murry and Melanie Wright who showed up early to give them instruction on orienteering.
While things may have been confusing at the start everybody seemed to be happy when they came in. I didn’t hear as much vampire attacks going on this year but I was told the vampire was active. Apparently, the vampire was so active a map came back covered in blood. We were relieved to see the victim come in safe and sound.
As far as results, it’s hard to really tell in a Vampire-O. Some people may have done great and had their map stolen at the last minute, some people may have found barely anything and ended up with a great map. But since this is a Vampire-O it only matters what you come in with at the end. Obviously, the Morgan’s came to win, they shut out the course taking first, second, and third place. The Murray’s also made a good showing coming in fourth, fifth. I’m not quite sure what happened to John, he mentioned getting lost out there. I guess it’s not an advantage to actually map the course. I’m sorry to say that Sam & Chase Murray ended the course as the vampire, bad luck but somebody has to do it. Thanks to Ennis and Melanie Wright for volunteering to start as a vampire.  

October 2, 2018

Vampire O at Eagle Island - Oct 20th

Vampire O at Eagle Island

The Vampire O is back at Eagle Island State Park. Did you know that Eagle Island State Park was originally a prison farm? On the eve of Saturday the 20th it will be transformed into the site for the much anticipated Vampire O

It’s been a while, so in case you didn’t know, or don`t remember, the vampires and you come out at night. The Vampires will try to steal your map and all your valuable control points, then you become the vampire. Then it`s your turn to regain some points, you must hunt down another participant and steal their map!  

So Grab your head lamp, and join us for a night of Orienteering in the Dark. It will be spooky out there, you may hear the faint sound of old rusty chains near site of the old slaughterhouse.  

The Vampire O has been a very popular event in the past. Please RSVP with how many maps you need so we print enough for everyone. Email to mmschuste (at) yahoo (dot) com by Thursday evening Oct. 18th. Also let me know if you would like to help with the event.

Date:  Saturday, October 20th
Location:  Eagle Island State Park
(park entrance is now from State Street)

Format:  Score
Mass Start:  7:15pm. Don’t be late!!

Time Limit: 1 hour
Cost:  Maps $5 junior or $10 adult/team, CTOC members free, ($5 vehicle entry fee)

Make sure you pay the $5 vehicle entry fee on the way into the park at the entrance kiosk. For a bargain the Idaho State Park Passport is only $10 for full year access to all 30 state parks. The park has generously allowed us use of the park without paying any event or shelter rental fee, in return, please pay the park entry fee if you do not have the Annual State Park pass. 

Event start is at the Harrier Shelter to the left of the waterslide. Park at the main paved parking area.


1. 2 Vampires will start 3 minutes after the mass start

2. Vampires have a blank vampire punch card worth 0 points

3. Vampires attack orienteers by getting within 5 meters and yelling “vampire attack”, the victim must then surrender their punch card to the vampire. They then receive the “vampire card” and become the vampire.

4. Just like in tag the vampire can’t immediately tag back but must find another victim

5. All controls are worth the same amount of points, 10 points. They can be visited in any order.

6. Penalty of 10 points per minute if you are back late. Be back on time!

7. There is no separate beginner/intermediate/advanced course. The time limit is one hour. It is up to you to determine how many controls you can collect within the time limit. Remember you must be back by the time limit or lose massive points. You had better be a runner if you try to collect all of the controls. But remember, no matter how good you do you may be attacked by a vampire and lose your points, but you may end up with better points.

8. If you don’t want to be attacked by vampires you have the option of carrying “holy water” to ward off vampire attacks. Anyone carrying a 1 gallon jug of water is immune from vampire attacks. You must however bring your own jug, and you must carry it by hand at all times.

9. You can compete as a group but must remain together.

10. Ranking is by highest points and then quickest time.

11. Don’t forget a flashlight or headlamp, please no super bright headlamps, you don’t want to take the fun out of the dark. Also you must have a watch so you are back in time. Costumes are encouraged but remember you will want to run in them.

 It will be almost dark by the time we start, so plan accordingly.

Corrals Meet September 22

On Saturday, September 22, I counted 4039 people running cross country. Unfortunately, only six participated in the CTOC Corrals Meet. The other 4033 were middle, junior high, and high school students running in the annual Bob Firman Invitational Cross Country Meet at Eagle Island. That's where we will be on Saturday, October 20 for our annual Vampire-O Meet.

Although the Corrals Trail and its associated trails are well known to hikers and mountain bikers, only the occasional hunter and sheepherder explore terrain in between the trails. Parts of the trails traverse private land and are closed to off-trail hikers. Other parts are on BLM land and open to the public. Our event was located entirely on BLM property. A couple of our orienteers remarked that they had always wondered what was out there and that they appreciated the opportunity to explore.

Because the Corrals terrain does not lend itself to either a beginner or intermediate course design, I originally scheduled a Sunday event for intermediate orienteers. However, the only orienteers who RSVPed for Sunday's intermediate course ran the advanced course on Saturday, so I canceled the Sunday event with their permission.

Shoelaces Invisible Under Embedded Grass Seeds
That's probably just as well. I'm not convinced that everyone could have picked all of the cheat, squirrel tail and medusa grass seeds out of their socks and shoes in time for a Sunday meet. Bill Leahy's friend, Lorie, did not get the memo about the situation, and consequently came without proper protection from the grasses. After the first control she realized that she would be spending more time cleaning her socks and shoes than orienteering. She wisely opted out and went for a trail run that must have been more enjoyable.

There must be some applause for Melanie Wright. She turned in a strong performance to win a second place finish behind Sergey. I am also grateful for her assistance picking up all of the most distant controls.

We hope to see you at the Vampire-O for the incomparable fun in the dark.

John Murray

September 23, 2018

Results for July 2018 Idaho Idaho City Gold Rush Meet

Kendal, Alaina, and Norma in action at the run-in control.
I apologize for taking so long to share these results.  I will spare you the excuses. We had 4 teams compete on the 2.5 km orange course and 3 individuals competing on the 2.6 km (and technically challenging) brown course. We were happy to see some first-timers including Brian McMahan and DeEtta Petersen as a team and Jason Quinn with daughters Kendal (9) and Alaina (7). The orange course had 13 controls, 4 with time-taking and the brown course had 14 controls, 10 with time taking. Katrina Wright won the orange course with a time of 1:04:19 and John Murray won the brown course with a time of 1:39:05.  
Katrina speeding to the finish.
Orange Results
Post race snacks for Jason, Kendal, and Alaina

Thanks to Penny for keeping me company during all the pre-checking and set up, even though it was very hot and there was only one mud puddle to cool off in. Thanks to Innes, John, and Jerry for control pick up help. I think there may still be two controls out on the green course waiting to be rescued

September 16, 2018

CTOC September Two-Day Meet September 22-23

We have a new map. There's one major problem with it. The terrain does not support either an intermediate or beginner course. We're gonna use it anyway.  If you want to run an intermediate or beginner course, do not be dismayed. We will have a second event the next day on terrain suitable for an intermediate and beginner course. 
Those of you who are familiar with the Corrals Trail and Bob's Trail will recognize this location. The course lies almost entirely within the boundaries formed by these two Ridge to Rivers trails.  The advanced course is 6.1 kilometers on a straight line basis and has 442 meters of elevation gain.
When:  Saturday, September 22.  Starts from 9:00 - 10:00 AM.   Course closes at noon, so if you want more time you should come earlier in the window.
Saturday Location:  The Miller Gulch Trailhead lies about three miles up Bogus Basin Road. The start is in the Miller Gulch Trailhead parking lot.  This link also highlights where to park.  
Format:  Classic:  Advanced (~6.1km, ~442m climb).
When:  Sunday, September 23.  Starts from 9:00 - 10:30 AM.   Course closes at noon, so if you want more time you should come earlier in the window.
Sunday Location:   
Finish and Parking Location: Willow Creek Parking Area on Eagle Road 3.5 miles north of the Beacon Light/Eagle Road intersection. If you are logged on to Google, you can find the start on this map:
Format:  Classic:  Intermediate  (~3.8km, ~243m climb). If you are interested in a Beginner Course, please contact me by Tuesday, January 30.


Single meet (day) dues: $10 per person/team, free for members 
  • Junior (up to 20 years old): $5 per person/team, free for members 
  • If more than one map is needed for a team, it is +$1 per map.
  • You may join CTOC for the full year which makes all local meets free!  See member info.
RSVP:  To minimize waste, please email me (jnm2870 AT cableone DOT net) with your count and maps needed by Thursday, September 20.    If you show up off the cuff, I will probably have a few blank maps to copy a course by hand.
  • Compass!
  • Waiver, prepared in advance especially if you are not a CTOC member.
  • A suitable pack with essentials and snacks as you usually need to prepare for a day hike in the foothills.
  • Sufficient water for yourself.  
  • Sunscreen and/or hat.  This is very exposed terrain.
  • Gaitors are highly recommended as there is an abundance of very annoying squirrel tail grass.
  • Shoes for steep  terrain.  If your ankles are sensitive please prepare accordingly.
  • Cell phone. I can not vouch for coverage, so be prepared with a whistle and other fallback options.
Important notes:  
  1. There are NO restrooms in the Willow Creek parking area or on the map.  There are pit toilets at the Miller Gulch Trailhead.
  2. I don't know what the rules are for dogs, but with deer present at both venues I believe dogs must be well controlled. That might mean a leash.
  3. There are a few barbed wire fences around.  As always be alert to loose strands on the ground, and as always watch where you run and step. Hope to see you out navigating with us next weekend!
John Murray