Emus Online - 12th February 2006

Over the past couple of weeks we've updated email addresses for club members and NE friends to whom the newsletter is sent. If you have (or see) a hard-copy of this newsletter and would like to be on the mailing list, please send an email message to hudson@bigpond.net.au and I'll put you on the list.

Please note that this is the 3rd edition of this newsletter for 2006 - if you haven't seen the earlier editions, they are available from http://emus.orienteering.com.au/

In this edition of Emus Online . . .

Member News

Annual Membership now Due

Annual subscriptions are now due (we do everybody in January....). Please re-enlist by sending $5 to Schon at the address below

Emus Orienteering Membership - Schon Hudson,
16 Fowler Street,
Box Hill South,
Vic.   3128

or pass it to her at any street-O event (she goes to most of them...)

We like to collect fees informally during February and then send out invoices later in the month to recalcitrant members  - please help us reduce administrative labour by sending in your renewal form now. Check out the renewal form at http://emus.orienteering.com.au/Joining Nillumbik Emus.html

Articles wanted

It doesn't take long to type up a few paragraphs about something that you found interesting recently. We'd certainly appreciate any contributions to the newsletter. Please send your articles/notes to hudson@bigpond.net.au 

Emus Website Updated

Have you been to our website lately? We've dusted off some of the cobwebs and updated a lot of pages - and we have a lot more planned! If you have a moment - check out the links below for some of the recent updates:

Visit the page every now and again for latest updates - in the meantime, we'll keep you posted of important updates via this medium.


Bayside Kangaroos has seen spectacular growth from street-O over the past 2 years. Primarily as a result of John and Jenny Sheahan's high-pressure (but very effective) sales techniques and their commitment to social events, their club has grown to more than 350 members. While their club is still run by the traditional 10-20 core-members, it is clear that some of the newcomers are beginning to contribute to the running of the club as well.

We too have seen some growth - but certainly not of this magnitude. Nonetheless, those that have joined the club have certainly pitched in to help - folks like Phil Giddings are always willing to help and Bruce Johnston and daughter who participated in bush orienteering for the first time last year helped us by organising the Westgarth streeto event for us.

The reality is that the BK tactics are only as effective as they are because our efforts in this area are quite paltry by comparison. If we want to grow, if we want to bring more people into our club, we need:

It's up to us folks - we can moan about the monopolistic approaches used by Bayside - but they are unlikely to change. We need to ramp up our efforts for the remaining 6-8 weeks of the Summer Series - why not pitch in and lend a hand?

Emus to provide DROC with assistance to return to Bush Orienteering

Late last year, we were approached by Dandenong Ranges Orienteering Club to provide them with assistance in running a bush event during the 2006 season. Some of you may not be aware that DROC dropped out of bush orienteering many years back and as a result have no bush maps at this time. The return of a strong club such as DROC to bush orienteering could be one of the best things that has happened in Victorian Orienteering for some time - and Emus Orienteering will provide the support and assistance required to help them do this.

At this stage, we would propose to help out with a map, with software and website space for the event page and results and logistical support in planning/course-setting - as required by the folks at DROC. Their plans at this stage is to run a more difficult maxi - while we target ours at moderate levels, they're hoping to run one in which most legs will have hard route choices in addition to longer/moderate legs that might be available.

DROC events are generally well organised and well run - we look forward to a great day in the bush and would encourage other NE members to get behind this and take part.

Computer Printed Maps

Various folks at the VOA have been discussing the possibility of computer produced maps for some time - Stephan Kramer (the man that wrote the OE2000 software for use with SportIdent) has set up a small business in Europe that provides A3 or A4 printing services directly onto waterproof Pretex paper.  Stephan reports that he printed 7500 maps in 2004 and this grew to 17,000 maps last year. His Quickmap Web Site provides details of the service provided - you just send him an Ocad 8 file and let him know how many copies of each course you want and off you go. Apparently cost and quality is on a par with offset printing.

I wonder which club will be first to buy a colour laser for local use? Perhaps the VOA could establish a central printing capability that we could all use - even better if this were portable - so it could be taken to events.

VOA Policy Day

Once a year on VOA Policy Day orienteers get together to review how our sport is tracking and where it can go or should go in the next few years.  Don Fell and Rob Edmonds will attend this coming Sunday on behalf of Emus. Some of the subjects to be discussed are:

We'll provide a summary of highlights in the next newsletter.

Womens Coaching Weekend (Repeat)

Schon and Lauris plan to attend the coaching weekend - if any other (female) members would like to attend and/or share transport, please get in touch with Schon by phone on 9888 8121 or via email at schon@orienteering.com.au

The course is open to all women 18 years and over. If you are new to orienteering this is for you! Come and learn the basics of bush orienteering in a friendly and non threatening atmosphere. Orienteers will work in ability groups so whatever your experience you will be catered for. Cost of the weekend is $127. The course is subsidised by a grant from VicHealth.

Deadline is February 24th, but it is first come first served! Email: voa@netspace.net.au or ring into the Office 9459 0853 to register. Full details and registration forms will be emailed/sent out once you register.

Handicapping Systems

We've been investigating handicapping systems for a while now - with a view to introducing such a system as a trial in the Northern Series. Recently we received a suggested approach from Ray Howe - an approach that is relatively easy to implement and pretty straightforward to explain. The basic concept is that it compares each runner in a particular course to every other runner in the course - the end result being a matrix of how many times you have competed against each other runner and how many times you have won or lost. Such a system allows one to compare runners in different series - as there are enough common runners in each series to provide reference points that allow reasonable comparison to be made.

The next step is to work out how to turn this into a usable handicap - that impacts the way in which we run events and/or display results. As Ray suggests, it is important that the sport recognise that to win by handicap has genuine meaning - but to do so, the approach used has to be credible and must encourage runners competing for the award to strive for improvement - by doing sufficiently better than their normal performance to win by handicap.

The way in which such a system could affect the events that we run is certainly interesting:

Book Review

A friend gave me this tiny book several years back - and recent travel on public transport has given me the opportunity to read it. All runners, from beginners to Olympians, will take delight in this compendium of wisdom gained from many years of running. With clarity and wit John Jerome provides a series of paragraphs and short excerpts on running-related topics, including stretching, bugs, falling, spaghetti, sweat and food. A few examples...


If you're having trouble staying motivated, seek an attitude adjustment. Stop thinking of exercise as more of that self-improvement stuff and start thinking of it as rescue; private time, a tranquilliser (and energizer), an antidote for the poisons of modern life. Use exercise that way and you don't have to make yourself do it., you have to ration the dosage.

    Belief Systems

Cold itself is no real problem, since running generates body heat. Wind is different. Weathercasters are fond of astonishing us with frightful, and not always believable, wind- chill factors. Runners should believe.

    Warming up, cooling down

The advice that comes showering down on us from the popular literature - from coaches, trainers and other interpreters of exercise physiology - may not go in one ear and out the other, but the only way to make it stick is to put it to some kind of test. When we do, we turn it into a set of sensations that we not only feel while they're going on but can remember afterward. Until we do, advice is just words.

Warming up and cooling down fit into this category. I've been told about careful warm-ups all my life, but I've had trouble making myself take the time. Or I did until I trained hard enough and regularly enough to get hit in the face with the difference between physiological warmth and cold - until I knew the difference not with my head but with my aching muscles.

"Muscles," in that sense, is athletic slang for a complicated physiological kit. Yes, warm muscle works better and gets injured less, just like they're always telling us. But it isn't just muscle, it is tendon and ligament and the rest of the connective tissue, it is joint lubricants and all the other fluids. That sluggishness you feel is not in your head, it's in the very viscosity of your blood. The warm-up applies profitably even to nerve tissue, synapses, supplies of neuro-transmitters. It is simply the best means we have of sweeping out the residues of both use and disuse, the unresolved products of yesterday's hard work or sloth.

The same goes for cooling down, of course. Skipping that step can be dangerous. Exercise generates adrenaline, which helps bring the heart rate up; an abrupt halt to exercise doesn't give the system time enough to shut down the adrenaline, which can drive the heart into dangerous arrhythmias. And if difficult accommodations at the hormonal level don't catch your attention, then perhaps you might want to envision the conditioning which you're leaving the larger systems when you shut them down too quickly; all those soft tissues engorged with wastes, spasmodic with fatigue.

The real action, however, is down there among the bits of chemistry. What training finally teaches us is to comprehend things like the warm-up and the cool-down at the cellular level, even the molecular level. The processes that we are most interested in work better, and improve faster, if brought carefully up to speed and carefully back down to normal use.

Recent Events

30 January - Tallyho

Finally, the weather turned cool again. Lots of emus in attendance - Ian & Lauris, Peter Kempster (who has recently started coming along with daughter Melissa), Peter Maloney, Schon & Geoff Hudson, Rick Bailes, Antony, Christy and Elise Ball, Kevin Maloney and Colin and Jenny Steer. The new lighter and faster Ian Stirling is becoming very competitive in B grade - so much so that Geoff (17 Kg heavier - a true porker...) has suggested that we introduce a handicapping system where we make folks like Ian (and Rachel....) wear a weight belt - and we have weigh ins before and after the event to make sure that they haven't thrown a weight. It works in horse-racing...

31 January - Altona Mound

Our man in the the Western Series, Don Fell, extended the Altona Mound map so that we could have a start location near the barbecues and public toilets at the Eastern end of the park. This meant that the first control was about 600-800m West (and so was the last control...) across open parkland - it was surprising how many experienced orienteers got confused as they ran across the parkland. Navigation was easy if you are a skilled orienteer with an element of cunning - you just follow Don. As mapper for this area, he knows it like the back of his hand - so I just tucked in behind and he took me through the park/scrub to the first 3 controls. We split up at that point with him doing one loop and me another. I worked out that we would meet again about 3-4 Km later at control 15 - a fence corner on the way back to the start....and sure enough, as I approached 15, I could see Don running across the parklands towards the same control. He pushed hard and beat me to the control - and the speed picked up for the final 1.5 - 2 Km home. It certainly made the finish more interesting!

1 February - Studley Park

A superb evening - very cool (in contrast to recent weeks) and in pleasant surroundings. This event used the area to the south of the boathouse - covering the area of Collingwood and the bike tracks around the animal farm. The map was a bit out of date and was a bit hard to read (or misleading) in a couple of spots - causing consternation in those that couldn't find cut-throughs that were supposed to be there, but if you had run in the area before, this wasn't too much of a problem.

2 February - Research

We keep saying that maps can't get any steeper and then something like this comes along to prove you wrong! Fortunately, the weather was kind - the evening was cool with a slight breeze - and as we ran across wide open paddocks and grassy laneways that are typical of this area, it felt really good to be alive. Some of the uphill sections were a bit challenging, but these seem to be less and less of an issue as we get fitter. Ian Stirling came first in B grade - a superb effort against a very competitive field - with Peter Lewis (also NE) coming in second.  The good natured atmosphere of the Northern Series was certainly evident - the Course Setter stressed that he had tried his best to keep the course as flat as possible - but had failed. The organiser pointed out that Northern Series participants were the street-O equivalent of Mountain Runners...and that Northern Series participants generally thought that most other maps were pretty flat (by comparison).

6 February - North Dandenong

Too far - didn't go!

7 February - Essendon

Schon forgot to bring my running gear (I have a sneaking suspicion that this was deliberate) - so we went to dinner instead. No report....

8 February - Smith's Dell, Hawthorn

This event was run by Caulfield Grammar School on our Smith's Dell map. Strangely, the normally crisp map seemed somewhat faded with poor contrast - and a number of embarrassing map errors had crept in - but none of these seemed to cause issue for the participants. Over 200 runers on the night - and this is likely to grow as the schools participation increases over the next few weeks.

9 February - Rosanna

It rained all day - so it was beautifully calm and cool by the time of the event. Unsure that it would stay that way, we encouraged everybody to take a plastic map bag - sorting through a wad of wet score cards that have stuck together is no fun at all! This was the best run that many of us have had in several weeks - the cooler weather allowed the pace to pick up and several people were heard to comment that they got beaten in spite of having had their best run in ages.

Coming Events

Street Orienteering

13-Feb-06 Foot Street Southern Series Monday Event 16 DR Notting Hill Mount Waverley Mayfield Park, entry from Mayfield Drive 70 B4
14-Feb-06 Foot Street Western Series Tuesday Event 15 NE Cairnlea  NEW MAP Cairnlea Deer Park Primary School, Furlong Road 25 H5
15-Feb-06 Foot Macedon Macedon Series Macedon 5 MFR Gisborne Gisborne Gisborne Reserve, opposite aquatic centre 197 E7
15-Feb-06 Foot Street Eastern Series Wednesday Event 16 DR Tunstall Junction Blackburn North Slater Reserve, Grosvenor Street 48 C5
16-Feb-06 Foot Street Northern Series Thursday Event 16 AR Bulleen Balwyn North North of Carron Street, near Singleton Road 32 G11
19-Feb-06 Foot Bush Club Event Season Opener YV Porcupine Ridge      
20-Feb-06 Foot Street Southern Series Monday Event 17 NE Camelot Rise (Score) Glen Waverley Capital Reserve, Capital Avenue 62 G12
21-Feb-06 Foot Street Western Series Tuesday Event 16 TK Teagardens Avondale Heights Canning Reserve, Canning Street 27 G8
22-Feb-06 Foot Macedon Macedon Series Macedon 6 CH Woodend Woodend Tourist Information Centre, Main Street, north of Forest Street 290 C8 VR
22-Feb-06 Foot Street Eastern Series Wednesday Event 17 YV Kerrimuir Kerrimuir Springfield Park, entry from Dorking Road 47 F7
23-Feb-06 Foot Street Northern Series Thursday Event 17 BK Darebin (Score) Bellfield Ford Park, Davidson Street 31 D4
27-Feb-06 Foot Street Southern Series Monday Event 18 BK Knoxfield Knoxfield R D Egan-Lee Reserve, entry from Wallace Road 73 B3
28-Feb-06 Foot Street Western Series Tuesday Event 17 BK Williamstown Beach Williamstown Osborne Street, start opposite Langford Street   BYO BBQ 56 B10

Mountain Bike Orienteering

18-Feb-06 MTBO MTBO MTBO Summer Series MTBO Summer Series #4 MTBO TBA
25-Feb-06 MTBO MTBO MTBO State Series SS  2 &  MTBO Selection Trial EU  
26-Feb-06 MTBO MTBO MTBO State Series SS  3  Vic Mid. Dist. MTBO Champs & Selection Trial  Maryborough   NE  

Sat 18 Feb 2006 Summer Series # 4 Silvan

Start location: Overflow car park, Silvan Reservoir Park (opposite main entrance) Stonyford Rd, Silvan. Melways 120 H11. Enter on the day from 5.15pm to 5.45pm. Start at 6.00pm. Adults $5, Juniors (under 21) $2.50.

Maryborough MTBO Feb 25/26:

If members were wondering about ever trying out a MTBO event, this is the one to start on. The tracks are not technically difficult and the area is quite flat, the flattest we use. It would be quite OK to use a standard road bike. We have map boards to loan out for free. Some of us are staying at the Maryborough Caravan Park in tents and cabins. You should book your accommodation as early as possible.

Bush Orienteering

The Season Opener is once again planned for Porcupine Ridge - this is one of my favourite maps - well-defined spur-gully terrain with one of the prettiest assembly/finish areas that you're ever likely to come across. Just North of Daylesford, with Bitumen all the way to the assembly area, it's easy to get to and provides an ideal coffee/refreshments opportunity on the way home. This is superb terrain for both beginners and experienced orienteers that want to strecth out and have a run - don't miss it!

Planned events that I know of are:

19-Feb-06 Club Event Season Opener YV Porcupine Ridge
04-Mar-06 Rogaine 6 hour Rogaine VRA
05-Mar-06 Rogaine 6 hour Rogaine VRA
11-Mar-06 Club Event Junior Eureka Challenge     (Note 1.) EU Hepburn
12-Mar-06 Club Event Senior Eureka Chllge  St. Series #1 (Note 2)   EU Hepburn
19-Mar-06 Club Event Easter warm-up  1  /  EU Club Event  EU TBA
26-Mar-06 Club Event Long "O"  (Club) BK Mt Hickey

NE Events for 2006 from Rob Edmonds

We now publish this information on the club website - and note that helpers are still required for several of the events. Please check out the events page on the club website at http://emus.orienteering.com.au/Events/2006/index.html

Eureka Club Events

Date :  11-Mar-06 12-Mar-06 19-Mar-06
Category/Index :  Bush State Series Easter warm-up  1  /  EU Club Event 
Series :  Club Event Senior Eureka Chllge  St. Series #1 EU
Event :  Junior Eureka Challenge & club event for all   Chinaman Flat
Club :  EU EU Linton
Map :  Blowhole Tipperary Springs Map 526 J4
Location :  Daylesford Daylesford Map 76 B4
Start :  10.30 to 1.30   1:15,000
Melway :  Map 509 C10 Map 509 C10 5 metre
VicRoads :  Map 59 C7 Map 59 C7 Take the Glenelg Hwy SW from Ballarat 35 km to Linton.  Turn right to Snake Valley & look for O signs.
Scale :  1:15,000  EU Challenge 1:15,000, Courses 3 to 12 1:10,000 Geoff Lawford & Jenny Bourne
Contours :  5 metre 5 metre  
Directions to Start :  From Daylesford, take the Midland Hwy 4 km towards Ballarat.  Turn right into Basalt Rd (O signs) & follow signs 5 km to start.  From Ballarat, turn left into Basalt Rd 3 km befond Swiss Mt Hotel. From Daylesford, take the Midland Hwy 4 km towards Ballarat.  Turn right into Basalt Rd (O signs) & follow signs 5 km to start.  From Ballarat, turn left into Basalt Rd 3 km befond Swiss Mt Hotel. Geoff Lawford & Jenny Bourne
Organiser :  Russell Bourke Russell Bourke 4 courses and score
Controller :  Roch Prendergast Roch Prendergast 11.00 to 12.00
Course Setter :  Warwick Williams Warwick Williams $6.00
Courses :  EU Jnr Challenge: M & W 16 & 18, 5 open courses Standard 10 SS courses.  EU Challenge on courses 1 & 2 $6.00
Start Times :  10.30 to 1.30 9.30 to 12.30 Mix of gold mining & spur/gully to prepare for Easter
FeesVOA :  $10.00 $10.00  
Fees Non VOA :  $12.00 $12.00