Whitehorse Daily Star

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Photo by Vince Fedoroff

A FAMILIAR FACE – Harreson Tanner was one of the artists taking part in The Covet –A Collectors’ Event at the Yukon Arts Centre Studio Room. The show featured 17 artists for Cultural Days, held last weekend.

The sun sets on the Yukon Orienteering Association season

The Yukon Orienteering Association (YOA) had their final race of the season on Friday at the soccer fields behind Takhini Elementary School.

By John Tonin on October 2, 2019

The Yukon Orienteering Association (YOA) had their final race of the season on Friday at the soccer fields behind Takhini Elementary School. The YOA has been holding events throughout the spring and summer and ended the season with its Night-O race.

The Night-O event featured four courses to choose, novice, intermediate, expert, and advanced. Starting at 8 p.m. the sun had set plunging everything into darkness.

Donning headlamps and reflective gear the orienteers descended onto the trails in their respective classes. The lights from their headgear bobbed up and down through the darkness.

Race organizer Jennifer Mackeigan said the YOA has been putting on a night race for about four or five years.

Mackeigan said night orienteering is big in some Scandinavian countries and that for the local seen in the territory it is a fun way to try a different race.

“A lot of people don’t know all the options for orienteer races,” said Mackeigan. “It shows people different things.”

As you might imagine, searching for controls with nothing more than a headlamp makes it much more difficult.

“During the day you can see everything,” said Mackeigan. “At night all you see is what is in front of you, that’s what you get. You don’t have all your instincts.

“It is a lot slower, it is very limiting, you have to go slow. I had concerns I may have made the distances to short.”

Because of the location, the Night-O was a bit more of a sprint format and incorporated both forest and urban controls.

As well, Mackeigan said, she wanted it to be a more social event since it was the final race of the year.

The novice and intermediate courses stuck to the trails and the paved pathways behind the school. The advanced and expert orienteers had to navigate their way through the forested area while searching for the features with the controls.

Stain Langbakk was the fastest to do the novice course, completing it in eight minutes, five seconds. Langbakk was followed by Erik Embacher and Sarah Johnson who both had times of 13 minutes, 32 seconds.

Joining forces were Cassi Jensen and Anais Hildes to top the intermediate class with a time of 19 minutes, 45 seconds. Carl Turcotte spent just over 20 minutes on the course to come second and Phineas and Georgi Pearson came in third.

The advanced course, which was 2.3 kilometres long was won by Erik Blake in 20 minutes, 22 seconds. Coming second was Pippa McNeil, in 21 minutes, 52 seconds and Bryn Knight rounded out the top three finishing in 23 minutes, 26 seconds.

Forest Pearson made quick work of the 2.6 kilometre expert course. He reached all the checkpoints in 17 minutes, 14 seconds. Benoit Turcotte, and Darren Holcombe came second and third.

Comments (1)

Up 1 Down 0

Bob on Oct 6, 2019 at 8:50 pm

From a far distance from YK, I read this article and it made me want to take part in future events.
This type of activity is excellent even to those with certain limitations.

I just gotta try this!

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