May 13, 2017

14th Annual Rabbit Creek Results

Melanie W., Leslie & Caroline, photo by Jeff

On May 7th twenty five orienteers took off at the mass start heading out in all directions. Some people were so excited to start that several dogs got left behind wondering where mom and dad went. We had a large turnout of new orienteers who stepped up to try the Intermediate course. We once again thank Bill Pilcher for hosting us at what is many peoples favorite event.

We had a true beginner out on the course, I’m glad I decided to make a Beginner map at the last minute. From the smiles on all faces at the end it looks like it went well, I think the cookie helped.

Katrina again tackled the Advanced Beginner course and came in first this year finding all controls quickly. Thomas came over from Jerome to try his first orienteering event, we hope to see him again soon.

Dondi, Alexis & Jerry, photo by Jeff

Leo & Denise plotting
Intermediate was the course of the day with thirteen attempting it. John Murray, Alexis and Innis all came in within a minute of each other for first, second and third place. John and Alexis both spent some time looking for TA, they agreed the map location was right but disagreed on the clue. Alexis was in a hurry to get back to catch the French election results, which was a relief. I was impressed to see five new orienteers clear the course within the time limit, quite a feat. There were a couple of bloody knees but all survived. David Murray came in within thirty seconds after Denise & Leo, who knows where he would have placed if he would have started on time. Jeff looked pretty sick but sucked it up and went out with Dondi & Toby and managed to get some great photographs of the day. I moved the elusive UA from last year to a location that was visible from both possible approach routes and didn’t hear about any problems with it.

Dondi, Jeff, Denise & Leo

Michael plotting his winning course
This year was Michael’s chance, his route choice panned out and he came in at first place. Doug came in with a half hour left and decided to go back out to get the last control. He chose wisely making it back before the time limit with a cleared course and second place. Bill Leahy was the only person to fall victim to the closely placed Intermediate course control PE and the Advanced course control WA. Karin and Melanie W. also tackled the large course and came in with a majority of the controls before the time limit.

Jeff’s photos have been posted to the CTOC yahoo group site at
Karin & Doug, photo by Jeff

Jerry out getting PE, with the nearby WA

April 30, 2017

Rabbit Creek - run rabbit run

14th Annual Rabbit Creek

Date:  Sunday, May 7
Location:  Rabbit Creek (Murphy, ID)
Score - Beginner, Advanced Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced
Start:  map handout 10:15am, mass start 10:30am
*Beginner & Advanced Beginner can start later if they are back by 1:30pm
Time Limit: 3 hours
Cost:  Maps $5 junior or $10 adult/team, CTOC members free

This year’s event will be a score course with four levels offered.  You can collect the controls in any order within the specified time limit (three hours). Be aware that you may not be able to collect all of the controls within the time limit so plan accordingly. You will find it is well worth your time to spend a couple of minutes analyzing the map and coming up with a plan before you take off. To discourage going over the time limit there is a large penalty for being late (10 point deduction per minute).

Since there is a mass start people should be back more or less around the same time to enjoy a potluck, bring something to share. We can also discuss planning for the quickly approaching championship meet in June.

Beginner – around 1.0km, 5 controls. A short course on flat ground near the house.
Advanced Beginner – around 2.0km, 10 controls. A larger course with some terrain features to make things more interesting but within sight of the homestead.
Intermediate – around 5.6km, 16 controls.  This course will get you out on a serious sightseeing tour without taking you out to the far corners of the course. 
Advanced - 10.4km, 26 controls. You’ll get most everywhere but not out to every corner. Once again there will be a special bonus prize for anyone who finds our camera and brings it back!

This event is in the Owyhees, land of lizards, wild horses, atv’s, barb wire, rattlesnakes, and great scenic beauty. Be prepared for possible wild weather. Pants/gaiters are recommended on the intermediate/advanced courses for brush and crossing over or under barbed wire. It’s bright out there with little shade so make sure you bring your sunscreen, a hat, and enough water/food to be out in the desert sun for three hours. Don’t forget your compass, it could actually be useful on this course. There will be two water drops on the course but you should still carry water with you in case you don’t find them. We did not see any rattlesnakes last weekend but they are out there so be watchful and listen especially around rock piles. The creek is flowing much higher this year; don’t lose a shoe in the muck. 
Given the variety of courses, the impossibility of printing maps anywhere near the area, and the desire to minimize waste, please RSVP to me no later than Thursday May 4th with your name and intended course choice (and if you want an extra map or two for a larger group.)  My email is mmschuste AT yahoo DOT com.  We will have some blank maps on hand if you don’t let us know you are coming.
Bring your event waiver prepared in advance especially if you are not a CTOC member, they can be printed from the website.

Driving directions: Rabbit Creek - Murphy
From Boise take I-84 west to Nampa (Exit 35). Turn Left and proceed to 3rd Street S (Caldwell Blvd). Turn Left on 3rd Street S (Caldwell Blvd) and proceed to 12th Ave. Turn Right on 12th Ave. Follow 12th Ave. south and it becomes Hwy 45 as it leaves Nampa city limits. Follow Hwy 45 across the Snake River. Soon after crossing the river, bear to the left and it becomes Hwy 78. Follow Hwy 78 to milepost 29. Immediately after passing the "Murphy" city limits sign turn to the Right on "Old Hwy 45" follow this for one block then continue straight and it becomes "Rabbit Creek Road". Follow Rabbit Creek Road for about 5 1/2 miles to J & S Road there is a lone mailbox. Turn Left on J & S Road and follow this road approximately 1 1/2 miles to the house and sign in area.

April 24, 2017

Make Rabbit Creek Great Again!!!

Hello all you very beautiful people, you really are, very,... very,.... great people indeed.
Its time to make Rabbit Creek great again!
{pause for applause}
We are bringing you simply the best controls ever in the Orienteering world, there have never been controls this beautiful before, ever!!
When we inherited Rabbit Creek, it was a huge disaster,... people everywhere,... even in France, were talking about what a disaster it was.
But with our Wonderful leadership,... it really is very beautiful leadership indeed... were gonna make Rabbit Creek great again!! {pause for applause}

Ok but seriously, it`s time for the 14th annual rabbit Creek run and potluck.
We are finalizing the details as we speak, but the pertinent info you need to know is as follows.
When: Sunday May 7th
Time: It’s a mass start this year, map hand out will be at 10:15, Mass start is at 10:30 Don’t be late!!!
Courses will be Beginner Intermediate, Advanced  

After the race we will be having a Pot luck and some planning, and discussion regarding the June 23-25 championships CTOC is hosting

Where: the Beautiful and Historic Rabbit Creek Ranch located outside of Murphy Idaho in Owyhee county. Plan around an hour from the freeway in Boise to get there.

Given the variety of courses, the impossibility of printing maps anywhere near the area, and the desire to minimize waste, please RSVP to me no later than Thursday May 4th   with your name and intended course choice (and if you want an extra map or two for a larger group.)  My email is mmschuste AT yahoo DOT com.  We will have some blank maps on hand if you don’t let us know you are coming.
Bring your event waiver prepared in advance especially if you are not a CTOC member, they can be printed from the website.

Final details, directions to the ranch, etc to come soon, please check back

April 6, 2017

April 8 meet invitation - Simplot fields and school grounds in Columbia Village East Boise

Dear Orienteering Enthusiasts,

Due to emergency closure of the Greenbelt and sections of numerous parks we are moving our Saturday meet to Simplot fields and school grounds in Columbia Village, East Boise.

Simplot fields map was used on a number of occasions for our local meets. Shine or rain we will have our meet center open near Columbia Village recreation center on E Lake Forrest Dr. We will use our electronic punch system so bring your SI stick if you have one or rent at nominal cost during the meet. Results will be printed right at the finish line.

It may be chilly, windy, and lightly raining so dress accordingly.

Who: Orienteers of all ages, novice to advanced.

When: Saturday April 8. Courses will be open for starts from 11am until 1pm. Courses close at 2pm. You may arrive within this window to try a course, as participants start separately a few minutes apart.

Meet Center location and directions: Center located 
near Columbia Village recreation center on E Lake Forrest Dr, East Boise.
Format: Classic. Three courses: advanced, intermediate, and beginner. 
Cost:  $10 per person/team, $5 for a single junior, free to CTOC members (more info here), $2 to rent SI punch stick, $1 to rent a compass.
You may want to bring: a SI punch stick if you have one, a watch, a compass, a snack, and a cell phone. SI sticks and compasses will be available for rent during the day.
Sergey Velichko
P.S. Updated Esther Simplot/Veteran's/Willow/Quinn parks map and designed courses for this weekend will be used either in mid-summer or December this year.

March 27, 2017

Willow Creek Results - March 26, 2017

Jerry Registering

Willow Creek wasn't the first meet that caused me to ponder why so few orienteers showed up to enjoy a new map on terrain so close to Boise. This time there were only seven. After much consternation and much less thought I conjured up an explanation.

Sergey Finishing
As I recalled the experiences of the last year I began to see a pattern emerge. It was about a year ago that Jeff Black directed a meet on the Queen Mine map newly developed by me. The Mile Marker 14 Fire burned over the map in the middle of July. July brought not only fire, but also a lot of untimely rain. We had scheduled the Pine Creek Meet for July 10 because everyone knows we don't get much rain in July, rain that could render the Pine Creek Road muddy and impassable. Due to the improbable deluge in Boise we postponed the meet for a week. Oh! And then there was more fire. I had made considerable progress mapping the Avimor area when a late July fire negated the work. August didn't work out too well either. My partner, Norma, owns a house in Cascade adjoining terrain full of the kind of features and variations that make an orienteer drool. I had a good start mapping it. The landowner denied us access. Well, so much for 2016. January's frozen ground at Willow Creek seemed like a near ideal venue for our January meet. In case you were hibernating and missed it, we experienced a wee bit more snow than usual in January. By March the snow was gone. Who could have predicted that the March 25 version of the January meet would be delayed due to rain? Maybe a better question is who couldn't?

Perhaps you being somewhat more discerning than your much humbled reporter can see the pattern here I resisted for so long. When John Murray is involved in a meet, something, large or small, recoverable or irredeemable, will go wrong. Apparently a lot of other folks discerned the pattern long before I did and exercised their good judgment to stay away. Hence, the seven orienteers least imbued with wisdom signed up for what promised to be the folly of Willow Creek March 25.

Before discussing the meet itself, I should pass on two pieces of good news. First, I will not be directing the next meet. Instead, the ever reliable Sergey Velichko will titillate us with a new map of the recently completed Esther Simplot Park. And if that's not enticement enough, he hopes to use the new e-punch system. And, second, I won't be directing a meet until October. You are safe to return to orienteering until then.

Strangely, a folly it was most emphatically not. Everyone seemed to enjoy the terrain, and nobody complained about the map. That was strange indeed. On the contrary, orienteers found the contours to be accurate, as expected when the elevation model is derived from high resolution LiDAR. Because the only significant vegetation was brush—sagebrush, rabbit brush, and bitterbrush—LiDAR produced a high quality vegetation map to the extent that it identified a single large specimen of brush. The snippet is from Control 8 on the Intermediate Map and Control 12 on the Advanced Map. The circle is about 55 meters in diameter. The green dot in the center is the large sagebrush on which the control bag was hung.

Thanks to a very tired Michael Bading for picking up the most exhausting controls. And, thanks to Jeff Black, who was not entirely recovered from his 100 miler last week for picking up some others.

We look forward to great April weather and Sergey's new map on Saturday, April 8.

John Murray
Meet Director

Doug, Brad, and Bill After Finishing