By Susan Gardner.
After competing in a metrogaine around 2 years ago with my husband and bushwalking friend John, he asked if we would like to do a rogaine. We were a little apprehensive at first but thought why not try something new.
The venue at Murrayfield on Bruny Island was a bonus, I had stayed there several times with bushwalkers and scouts. We soon signed up and received our information packs. As we are all over 65, we were put in the ultra-veterans class.
Arriving at Murrayfield on the Saturday morning we saw a mass of people of all ages and the tents of people who had stayed overnight. We picked up our maps and sat down to plan our route for the 6-hour course. We decided on a route towards the south that took in coastal scenery and the church ruins where we have walked several times. This involved finding 15 checkpoints.
John, Robert and I were out to have a fun day in the bush with the added challenge of using a map to locate the checkpoints. John wore the wristband and carried a half plastic pipe for helping to climb over barbed wire fences.
At 11.00 o’clock, the crowds of people headed off in all directions. John kept up a fast pace and we soon made our way around the vast property using the vegetation and land marks on the map to guide us. Some of the points were well hidden and I must admit, I put myself in Robyn’s mind set, looking ahead at the terrain wondering where she would have put the next marker.
We allowed ourselves a quarter of an hour lunch break at number 20 before heading off again. The pilot station was a fascinating spot and the coastal scenery was superb although at one stage we had to push through head high bracken. During the day we did not see more than 10 people on the course.
On the way to the church we walked with a couple from SA who had come over to do the course and have a holiday. We found all but one of the checkpoints and I really enjoyed the walking through open paddocks and light bush in the afternoon.
As we sighted the finish point we realised we had only 7 minutes left. Should we go for our last point? Yes, we ran to the dam, checked-in and finished 35 seconds past 5.00pm. Phew! We were very surprised to find that we had won our class with 470 points. Yay!
An excellent meal rounded off the day. A very well-organised and thoroughly enjoyable experience. We will be back.