By Neil Hawthorne

The event will be remembered as cold and wet! There was damp but comfortable weather for the 6-hour event but that was quickly followed by dark bitter rain during the extended 12-hour event. Sodden teams found relief in finishing and thankfully all were rewarded with generous portions of hot food. The Mushroom Risotto was particularly good. The weather worsened through Sunday morning for all the “happy campers”.

Ninety-eight keen Rogainers posted hard earned scores. There were 22 teams in the 6-hour and 21 teams in the 12-hour. 2,960 points across 54 controls were up for grabs. No one cleared the course but anyone scoring around 2,500 points had travelled near 50km in 12 hours. Everyone seemed to like the course layout as evidenced by Rogainers scuttling off in all directions. Thereafter a calm descended on the Hash House as the support team waited for the 6:00pm returns.

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The area just North of the Hash House was the most popular being relatively flat with controls located close together. Despite the climb to a high 500 metres ASL (Above Sea Level) almost everyone visited the “Beehive” cairn atop Mount Spode (90). Had it been warmer Rogainers might have been bothered by live beehive activity as experienced by the vetting team.

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One of more controversial controls (83) was situated adjacent this tranquil pond. What this view (see below) fails to show is the condition of the shortest access route. This was a steep loose rock embankment immediately behind the control on the East side. A good deal of cursing was reported. The North and South sides are impassable cliffs. No surprise then that the low Western end was the exit of choice.


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This water feature is a former quarry used in the construction of the nearby Meadowbank dam.

The least popular location was control 80 buried deep down in Whites Valley.

The most scenic control may have been the elevated view of the Derwent from control 68 looking North to the valley beyond. The distant bushy spur meets the Derwent at a low 50m ASL near a rock outcrop (92) from which you can see back up to aforementioned high view point (68). A bit hilly but worth every vertical metre!

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6-Hour Winners

Mens  1300 Richard Corry & James Horne 
Mixed 1170 Nicola Marshall & David Marshall
Womens   930 Janet Hancock & Sue Hancock

12-Hour Winners

Mens   2490 Darryl Smith, David Cole
Mixed 1910 Bernard Walker, Sara Brain
Womens 1690 Karen Wild-Allen, Meisha Austin 

A big thank you to all those that contributed: Gary Carroll, Andrew Koolhof, Peter Cusick, John Dawson, Vince Harding, Rod Bilson, Nick Bowden, Nicole Carpenter, Liz Canning plus Darryn Cubit and Christine Fox our caterers. Jeff Dunn, Darryl Smith, Bernard Walker, Sara Brain and Sally Wayte returned to the event site after the event to collect controls and the dried tents.

A special thank you to the property owners that granted us special access to this stunning country side.

By Robyn & Peter Tuft

We don’t remember clearly how we got involved in the recent Metrogaine - we think we offered to help but somehow ended up being the lead course setters.  We also don’t clearly remember how the event area was chosen, but it was a great choice.  As those who participated know, the area between Kingston Beach and Margate offers a remarkable diversity of terrain and scenery - beaches, coastal cliffs and bays (even a blowhole), suburbia, bushland (from tall forest to the scrub of Peter Murrell reserve), open paddocks, and high hills with panoramic views.

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In the end 115 competitors in 43 teams got to enjoy at least some of that but relatively few were able to sample the full range of terrain on offer.  Because the course area was so diverse and interesting we put out 48 controls over a wide area, not really expecting that anyone would go close to visiting all of them.  As it turned out, the winning team of Allan Hood and Darryl Smith covered 45 km to get a very creditable 32 controls, which means we put out 50% more controls than were really needed.  But no regrets - we had great fun exploring the area so fully.

by Nic Pittman

The 2017 Australian Championship Rogaine was held in early May at Chakola, near Bredbo, south of Canberra. I left the comforts of beautiful Hobart on the Friday afternoon and flew to my hometown of Sydney. After some typical Jetstar delays, my rogaining buddy Ciara picked me up from Sydney Domestic airport, beginning the 4-hour drive towards Cooma, NSW… and to think I had forgotten about Sydney traffic!

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Ideally a rogaine course should be designed so that the best teams think they can get all the checkpoints, but they actually can’t. We did that. But we didn’t expect a team of elite European orienteers to enter. And to be honest, even when they did, we thought ‘Ah, orienteering whiz kids – won’t have the stamina for a 12 hour event. Just show-ponies when it comes to rogaining’. How wrong we were.

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The World Rogaine Championships returned to Australia for the fourth time on the weekend of the 23rd and 24th July 2016. The venue included some of the area used for the 2007 Australian Championships - the spectacularly scenic East MacDonnell and Fergusson Ranges 80kms east of Alice Springs in the Northern Territory.

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Sunset scenery - with a touch of spinifex. Photo by Bill Butler.

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