Edinburgh Southern Orienteering Club

Highland 2015 - Scottish 6 Days2 - 8 August

The Scottish 6 Days was much bigger than usual this year, running in conjunction with the World Orienteering Championships. ESOC was one of the lead clubs, and ESOC members were hard at work all week, some giving up their runs, but everyone seems to have enjoyed the event. 

Nairn Sprint, Saturday 1 August
Many went to Nairn to watch the exciting WOC Sprint Relay. Immediately afterwards, there was an open Sprint race in Nairn, using much of the same terrain. Courses started in open sand dunes, then headed into the network of narrow streets in Fishertown, back to the arena for a spectator control, then looped through parkland with some confusing small hills and depressions before the finish.
ESOC members with results in the top half of their course were as follows. There were 2 parallel courses in each class.
Junior_Orange (44 competitors): Rachel Brown 11th
Junior_Sky (49): Ben Brown 20th
Men_Blue (136): Andrew Lindsay 21st, Andrew Dalgleish 28th, Terry Johnstone 54th
Men_Red (142): Mark Wood 35th=
Women_Green (108): Alison Cunningham 35th=
Women_Yellow (110): Rona Lindsay 7th, Andrea Davison 55th

Day 1: Achagour, Sunday 2 August
This was a (mostly) new area, and gave a wide variety of terrain. Longer courses had beautiful moraine at first, surrounded by marshes, then a very complicated section around field archery targets, with a confusing network of paths. Next came some vague moorland, then a thick plantation and finally birchwoods before the finish. The weather was sunny and warm.

Day 2: Strathfarrar, Monday 3 August
This was another new area. Strathfarrar is a quiet glen with strict access controls, so the car park was 2km from the arena. There were some problems with the parking field following the recent wet weather, and as a result starts had to be extended; some started very late indeed. The terrain was quite wild, and early starters had a lot of deep bracken to contend with, while late starters had a lot of mud. There were mercifully few ticks, though, and the weather was dry and breezy.

Rest Day: Tuesday 4 August
There were plenty of orienteering activities on the Rest Day. In the morning, there was an open Sprint race in Forres, where the WOC Sprint Qualifier and Final had taken place (on 31 July and 2 August respectively). Senior courses led competitors through the closes and alleyways of the old part of the town, then crossed the main road into Grant Park, with a sting in the tail for longer courses, which had a few controls in woods up the steep hill behind the park. It was sunny all morning.
ESOC members with results in the top half of their class were as follows:
M Vet (91 competitors) - Mark Wood 8th, Keith Brown 39th
M Supervet (88) - Crawford Lindsay 37th
M Ultravet (62) - Les Dalgleish 27th
W Open(78) - Rona Lindsay 5th, Gillian Martin 32nd
W Vet (77) - Alison Cunningham 7th=
W Supervet (58) - Sally Lindsay 7th, Maggie Scrugham 8th=, Janice Nisbet 29th
W Ultravet Women (31) - Eleanor Pyrah 3rd
W Junior (23) - Rachel Brown 7th, Kerry Wood 9th
This was the 5th event in the 2015 Scottish Orienteering Urban League, and also the 12th event in the 2015 UK Urban League. Details of all the events in the 2015 Scottish Orienteering Urban League, and the league tables, are available here. League tables and other details about the UK Urban League are on the UK Urban League website.

Also on the Rest Day, many people went to Darnaway to watch the WOC Middle Distance race, and there was also a variety of activities on offer at the Highland O-Fest, keeping everyone busy. The weather was showery.

Day 3: Darnaway East, Wednesday 5 August
This day was a Middle Distance race for all competitors, in terrain used by the previous day’s WOC race. Parts of the forest were beautiful open beech forest; other parts were much rougher, and the route to the final control was unfortunately a tedious dash along a path across a field, dictated by requirements of the WOC races. The WOC forest relay was held in the afternoon, and again there was a large crowd and a great atmosphere in the arena. It was cloudy but dry.

Day 4: Darnaway West, Thursday 6 August
This race also used WOC terrain from the previous day. Much of the area was beautiful beech forest, with many small hills and depressions, and plenty of contour detail. Most thought this was the most enjoyable day of the week. After overnight rain, the weather was bright and dry.

Day 5: Affric South, Friday 7 August.
There were long walks to the starts, and the terrain was very rough, with several steep-sided ravines to cross, on hillside covered in sometimes low-visibility forest. There were some long times, and many retirals.
The WOC Long Distance race took place in the forest on the north side of the glen throughout the afternoon. There were light showers for most of the day.

Day 6: Affric North, Saturday 8 August
This day was held in the some of the terrain used by the previous day’s WOC race. There was another long walk to the start, which was quite high, and again rough, tough terrain with reportedly splendid views, then steeply down to open ground with a few more controls amongst confusing hillocks before the finish. The weather was bright until late afternoon, when there were a few showers.

ESOC’s best overall results came from Helen Bridle, who came 3rd in W21E, Rachel Brown, who won W12A, Adam Clark, who won M10B, and Walter Clark, who won M35S.
Others who finished in the top half of their classes were:
M10B (19 competitors) – Joseph Lawlor 10th
M20S (15) – Jamie Cunningham 6th
M40L (81) – Ray Ward 26th
M40S (51) – Alistair Hindle 6th
M45S (107) – Mark Wood 27th, Clive Masson 51st
M50S (107) – Keith Brown 47th
M55S (139) – Mike Stewart 33rd
M60S (101) – Roger Garnett 10th, Alistair Armitage 37th
M65L (152) – Alastair Lessells 34th, Dave Kershaw 48th
W14A (69) – Kerry Wood 33rd
W40S (54) – Heather Thomson 22nd
W45L (122) – Helena Nolan 51st
W45S (96) – Leonne Hutchinson 39th
W50L (152) – Alison Cunningham 9th
W55L (148) – Sally Lindsay 46th
W60L (95) – Mary Williams 25th
W60S (70) – Janice Nisbet 7th
W65L (76) – Anne Stevenson 18th
W70L (42) – Eleanor Pyrah 13th

A competitor’s points were the same as their finishing position each day, and their four best results over the 6 days were totalled to give their final score. Competitors with a low enough score could buy a gold, silver or bronze cloth badge. Badge standards were based on the number of competitors in the class; the full list is available on the Badge Points page of the Highland 2015 website.

The Highland 2015 page on the Scottish 6 Days website gives further details about the competition areas, comments and results for each day, including Routegadget, and links to many photos.
Some photos have also been added to the following albums in ESOC's Google Album Archive:
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 6

Day 2 (Strathfarrar) and Day 3 (Darnaway East) were the 12th and 13th events in the 2015 UK Orienteering League.

Other entries categorised under: Event Reports