Night RadiO Report

Sat, 22 November, 2014

Well the Night-RadiO was an unexpected success.

It wasn’t officially on our event calender till recently, but without the healthy number of 10 RadiO competitors, the Night-O champs would have looked a bit lean, with only 25 Bush-O-only competitors (including two visiting Czech competitors who turned up very late).

The weather presented mild temperatures, but with periodic rain showers, and a particularly heavy shower just before the 12 midnight deadline. This caught a couple of competitors out, and Dennis, who could no longer read his map, made a call back to base for directions home !

The RadiO event consisted of 4 2m ARDF transmitters on 145.3MHz, and 6 2m FoxOrs on 145.7Mhz. The FoxOr circles were not marked on the map, except the competitors were alerted that at 6 of the normal Bush-O controls, a FoxOr could be heard. I just didn’t say which 6 !

There were 33 Bush-O controls, but I wasn’t cruel, and all but one of the FoxOrs were near Bush-O controls near the start, many inside the ARDF 750m exclusion circle.

The Bush-O controls scored between 20 and 80 points each in the 3 hour score event, the FoxOrs 100 points each, and each ARDF Tx 150 points.

The time was 3 hours, and started on-time at 9pm.

Originally I had intended there to be 5 of each ARDF and FoxOrs, but unfortunately the battery in TX#4 was terminally dead. I deduced this was due to a key-switch which had become loose, and therefore the TX possibly wasn’t turned off after an event sometime. All fixed now, but a lot of stuffing about on the night to determine it was not gonna be a goer. I also had issues with the internally soldered connections in the TX#2 turnstile antenna, but was able to make a temporary repair for the night. Also fixed now. Due to the lack of one of the ARDF’s I added in another FoxOr.

Thanks to all those who went out again after midnight to pick up a couple of RadiO controls each !

Thanks also to Henk & Di for the lunch on Sunday of pancakes with strawberries and maple syrup. Yum !

Here are the results:

The RadiO results are under Junior Male for some weirdo Eventor reason (might even be changed to RadiO by the time you view them).

Congrats to Kristian, the winner of the chocolate bar, even beating Simon’s Bush-O score (but then, the RadiO scoring was a bit biassed!). Also specials mentions to Grant and Mark taking out the minor placings with commendable scores. It was interesting to note the different score gathering strategies, with different balances of the 3 options (ARDF, FoxOr and the higher-scoring Bush-O’s).

People seemed to enjoy the event format, despite the plethora of things to do and keep in mind. Discussions afterwards indicated it was really good practice for keeping map contact, or relocating again if you lost it, as you had to know where you were to find the Bush-O controls. This is a good idea for ARDF, allowing your bearings to have an accurate start point. In normal ARDF you can normally muddle through if you don’t keep map contact, but this event didn’t allow you to do that (too much….).

Oh, and the two Czech competitors who went out to try some Night-O (with borrowed head-light and southern hemisphere compasses) ? They knew all about Radio orienteering of course. “There are a whole group of them in the next town over from where we live; they often participate in normal orienteering events with us too”.

Note for next night event … get some more reflective tape to replace the missing strips.