6 athletes (5 from VIC and 1 from Qld.) Are currently in Sokcho, Korea for the 19th ARDF World Championships.
In the usual fashion competitors made their way to Korea all at different times.
Jenelle and Ewen were the first to arrive, enjoying a week long tour of Korea before the event.
Peter and Kristian met up with Jenelle and Ewen just a couple of days before the event. As a team we headed on a tour to the DMZ and individual members enjoyed some of the historic and cultural sights around Korea.
On the arrival day Jack and Nelly met up with the rest of the team in Sokcho.
The following day we had training with 3 seperate model events which were held in the area surrounding the accomodation.
During the model events all equipment was tested and working except for one of the 2m beams had a broken BNC connector, but luckily there was a spare. (however the spare PVC beam exhibited a design flaw so no doubt a fault report will be lodged with the manufacturer on our return.)
The first event was the fox-or which was held today.
For each age category a different map was produced with only the required Tx’s shown. There were a total of 10 Tx’s (10mW) plus the beacon (3W) but the longest course only covered 8 of the TX’s (map shown below for M21). Each Tx had its own morse identifier and were numbered 1-5 and 1F-5F.
The frequencies for the foxes were 3520 kHz (1,2,1F,2F), 3550 kHz (3,3F,4,4F) and 3580 kHZ (5, 5F) with the beacon being on 3600 kHz.
All Australian competitors completed the course within the allocated time.
Jenelle and Ewen both finished 7th in thier categories.
Kristian finished 24th in M21.
Nelly finished 27th in W21.
Peter missed 1 Tx.
Jack missed 2 Tx’s.Full results can be viewed for todays fox-or event here:
With the forecast wind and hail, 9 brave souls attempted the ARDF Sprint training held in and around Deakin Uni. A couple also did some of the Enduro controls, which was an orienteering event starting from the same spot.
The format of the event was a Five-in-Five 2m event, which in theory is possible to complete in about 6.5 minutes, followed immediately by an 80m Sprint ARDF event. Five-in-Five uses classic 5 minute cycle (1 minute each) ARDF transmitters spaced close enough that it should be possible, walking, to get to each transmitter as it comes on first time (for you). Only Jack WWW managed to get the transmitters in under 10 minutes (2 cycles). Good effort, Jack ! He admits he had a bit of luck, with earlier competitors just leaving transmitters as he approached, helping to lead him in. The time limit for this part of the event was set to 30 minutes. The transmitters were all in parkland, just off a track. In you look at the splits, below, you’ll also see Jack was the only one to do the transmitters in order, with everyone else going from #1 to #5, and then to others. Perhaps some just happened across #5 by accident ?
Mark, Suzanne & Rodney elected to only do the Five-in-Five course, with Mark the winner amongst those. Suzanne suffered some late penalties (problems with #1), but still beat out Rodney for second place. Looking at the splits at control 6 (236), Jack was clearly the fastest at this part of the event, followed with an impressive 11 minutes by Jenelle.
An ARDF sprint event has a 1 minute complete cycle, with each transmitter only on for 12s each. This was set in an area with both complex buildings, the university, and parkland around Gardiners Creek. TX #5 and #4 were in amongst the buildings and this proved too much for Jack and Peter, but not so Kris and Jennelle, who both managed those with ease. Monica liked #5 so much she punched it twice (see splits below) ! Clearly after being so flustered by those two tricky TX’s, Jack and Peter both also forgot to punch the Finish Beacon (which you are required to do at international events).
And TX #1 in the uni accommodation area ? Well, it had to be there didn’t it 🙂 Can’t make it too easy ! Generally competitors had to plan and DF carefully in this event, as it could be easy to end up the wrong side of the creek. Competitors doing both events had an un-timed (up to a 10min limit) transition leg between 2m and 80m, to get their 80m gear in order. I’m happy to say the software handled this perfectly, and I didn’t have to adjust the times it published at all.
Yep, we got that hail, and the heavy rain, but luckily both were only for short bursts, being perfect running conditions otherwise. Monica says the hail even helped her spot TX#5, as she sought shelter under cover. Besides, it’s good practice and testing for your gear, as sometimes weather can be quite unpredictable at international events. Torrential downpours are not uncommon. Thanks to Ewen for the new 80m Sprint TXs. Proto TX#1 for the 2m set has now been completed (and works), so soon we’ll have a 6-TX set on both bands.
Thank you to everyone who helped pick up the transmitters afterwards, just before the rain came (again). Apologies to Monica for not giving her a key on her first attempt.
Here’s the map, with TX locations shown. I’ve used A->E for the 80m TX, and 1->5 for 2m TX. BB was the location of both 2m and 80m beacons.
A cold morning saw Greg out of bed early and wandering around Candlebark Park in Doncaster setting out five 80M transmitters. The event got underway just after the advertised start time of 10:00am. Ten people decided to have a go locating the TXs and Sports Ident was used for scoring.
Some of the early competitors were not made aware of the time limit (was to be 90 Mins) so the following results do not include any time penalties.
For those who would like to check leg time etc the detailed results are at the end of this report.
Soup was provided at the end of the event and it seems a good time was had by all. Many Thanks to Marg for assisting and Ian Stirling for organising the transmitters; Bruce for the SI gear, Ewen for the map, Jack for the club receivers and headphones, the latter three also helped in collecting transmitters.
Individual Results – Rows are – TX No; Elapsed Time; Leg Time
The Gardiner’s Bend RadiO event on Saturday 9 September 2017 took place on a gloriously sunny spring afternoon and was an opportunity to explore the parkland around Gardiner’s Creek and Ashburton.
6 participants tried out the RadiO combo course – a combination of foxor TXs and street-o controls. 2 went for foxors only.
Darian and Pierre took a conservative approach and collected 5 foxors without giving in to the lure of more far-flung foxors and controls. Neale did a very efficient course and returned well within the time. It was a long course if you tried to collect them all (over 15 km!). Hamish, Monica and Ian succumbed to temptation and had adventures and were late returning – Monica plagued by an injured ankle and Ian chasing reflections from the Monash Freeway wall.
Jack and Peter enjoyed the sunshine and visited the foxors only – Peter taking the scenic route home.
Thanks to all for coming and helping with the setup and pull down.
GARDINERS BEND RESULTS RADI-O EVENT 9 SEPTEMBER 2017
From Monica Lo Presti – a teacher at Dromana College,
Dromana College offers a STEAM enhancement class for Year 7 and 8 students before school once a week. This term, students began to look at some of the basics of electronics, and even built their own crystal radio from a kit. As part of this program, one of the teachers in charge asked me if I could run a session based on my experiences with amateur radio and ARDF. As a result, on Tuesday 8th August I was able to speak to the students about what Ham radio is, and the activities that those with and without an amateur licence can participate in.
After running through the basics, and showing a short video from one of the Mount Gambier foxhunting championships, students were shown a fox-or transmitter, and how to use a sniffer to find it. I set up a course of five transmitters that were hidden around the school that students then worked in pairs to find. There were varying levels of success with most groups finding at least two transmitters, while some were able to find all five. Some groups also struggled as an unknown source was transmitting a signal in one corner of the course.
Overall students had lots of positive feedback for the morning. Many commented on how much fun they had, along with enjoying the practical nature of the event and excitement of finding the transmitters.
The RadiO event at Woodlands Historic Park on 20 August 2017 took place on a delightful winter’s day – sunshine, blue skies, no wind and an open bush setting where the wattle is starting to bloom. And some interesting large river gums and creeks for a foxor hunt!
ARDF course setter Suzanne O’Callaghan VK3FSZI collaborated with Tuckonie Orienteering Club to put together a combination course of foxor transmitters and bush orienteering controls – or for those who prefer RadiO on its own, a course of foxor transmitters only.
5 intrepid ARDF members tried out the RadiO courses, alongside around 150 competitors for the MelBushO orienteering course.
Darian Panter VK3FAST was his usual speedy self and cleaned up the foxor only course in under an hour.
Ian Dodd whipped around the combination course, collecting all orienteering controls and the foxors in under 90 minutes. Peter Maloney dropped the furthest controls and foxor for a very respectable second place. And Mike Hubbert and Hamish McDonald explored the creeks for an intense orienteering and foxoring experience.
RadiO A – Combo MelBushO and Foxor TXs 90 minutes
RadiO B – Foxor TXs only 90 minutes
Thanks to Ian Dodd for programming the RadiO event into the MelBushO results system.
And to Warwick Davis from Tuckonie Orienteering Club for the MelBushO map.
It was a cold morning with frost on the ground but the sun was shining and there was no rain about. Ian VK3MZ, Doug VK3JDO and Greg VK3VT had the transmitters out and ready at 10:30 and a steady stream of participants arrived to try their hand at the 2M full ARDF course or the 80M “Half Sprint”. Ian VK3MZ had been busy re-programming the 80M transmitters for Sprint use so this was the first Sprint event we have tried. While there are still a few issues with the keying most participants were able to identify which transmitter they were hearing. In a Sprint event each transmitter is on for just 12 seconds rather than the usual 60 seconds of a normal ARDF event. The transmitters are closer together and the overall elapsed time is expected to be within about 60 minutes.
The temperature remained rather low, in the low teens, the whole day but as can be seen from the results a total of twelve participants turned out and had a go at one or both of the courses. My sincere thanks to Ian and Doug for helping organise the event and setting up the gear and to Dianne for the excellent scones. Also to those that helped pack up.
Many thanks to the Yarra Valley Orienteering club for the use of their map.
Here’re the results – below. Scoring is order based, with an extra bonus point for not finding the fox. The first two hunts were single legged. As we went along we decided, to keep the night moving, to make the remaining two legged.The scoring for the second legs words exactly as the first; order based using elapsed time from the first leg. We kept the fox running longer to allow teams to get; up to ~1/2 hour on the second leg. GWS team, nice work. You didn’t hold us up! From bitter experience, when we started (>30 years ago), there’s nothing worse than not finding the transmitter all night, making it difficult to improve. One thing it took us ages to solve, is we could never get a good DF as drove close (<~100m) to the transmitter; the signal would leak into the receiver with the attenuator maxed out (70-80dB). CheersXAJ/dB
The long and winding road from Moldova through Transylvania to Walachia (north to south)
From our rural retreat in Maramures we headed east to Moldova crossing the Carpathians by the Borgo pass road enroute to Bucovina. Egg painting is a competition among the villages at Easter time.
Lunch today was Mici, a rectangular meat pattie cooked on a BBQ and served with mustard sauce.
Visited two painted monasteries (orthodox). The first was for the local community (Moldovita) and used as a refuge in times of siege. Note the wall and the strong wooden gate.
The second was for the clergy (Sucevita). The outside walls of the church was decorated, one illustrating the difficult path in getting into heaven. Inside, the frescoes showed various methods of torture and head lopping. Again a walled garden and plenty of room for the local community to shelter in times of siege.
Next highlight of the road was the animal reservation with animals native to the area. One sad and lonely bear, a small herd of buffalo and several different species of deer.
We drove through the Bicaz gorge (river running down the side). Sampled some green nut jam. Walnuts cooked in a syrup halfway between golden syrup and malt extract. An acquired taste.
Our route took us past Lake Rosu, really a dam and then onto Brasov.
Brasov is also fortified. City square with Lutheran church – aka Black Church due to a fire. Johannes Honterus was
responsible for setting up the Lutheran church and the building of the first school (directly across from the church). The original school was wooden but suffered the same fate as the church and was rebuilt in stone.
It has been particularly pleasant having an evening stroll through the many pedestrian malls in our travels.
Fort on the hill outside Brasov. Spectacular view of the surrounding country.
Bran castle – summer residence of Queen Mary of Romania. No vampires in site. Apparently Vlad the Impaler (Dracula) was have seen it on his way through. The most interesting artifact was the scales of justice. Based on a person’s size and height, if they weighed less than expected they were considered apprentices of Satan and torture would commence. Hopefully you can read the information in the photo.
The most elaborate building in Transylvania is Peles Castle. Unfortunately only outside views, but obviously prime real estate.
Our guest house at Maramures is located in a peaceful rural setting apart from the chainsaws, angle grinders and whipper snippers. Hospitality here is exceptionally good.
Dinner was in an open air setting
Entree meat balls, soft cheeses, pork fat and tomato with onion bread
The lightest, fluffiest and tastiest donuts ever with blackcurrant jam
All washed down with Palinka and black currant “cordial”
Needed a sleep in after last night!
Late start, headed for the local market, plenty of “stuff” to buy from clothing, shoes, manchester and tools. Too late for the animal market. Probably a good thing.
Checked out a modern monastery at Barsana, beautiful wooden buildings and gardens, church with pictorial stories.
Memorial to the opponents of the communist regime, very bleak place.
In a complete contrast we visited the Merry cemetery at Sapanta with colourful wooden headstones with pictures of deceased in their occupations and poems about them (all in Romanian of course)
Spent a leisurely afternoon in the outdoor area. We have eaten so well the last few days Ewen has survived since breakfast on only one jam pancake.
We could not escape Maramures without a ride on the Mocanita narrow gauge railway at Viseu de Sus very close to the Ukrainian border. For the more ardent train fans it was a 1930s vintage steam locomotive that was used to transport timber down the valley. Originally timber was floated down the river, but after a dam burst the train line was built. The 21km ride to the turn around point was supposed to take just over 2 hours. It became pretty evident early on that at the current speed something was amiss and it would be a lot longer (3 hours eventually). Repairs were needed along the way and after much banging and crashing a bearing was suitably adjusted and we continued on our way. Included in the tool set was a most impressive oil can.
The track followed the river most of the way. Still plenty of logging happening here with some unorthodox methods of transportation. A large tractor pulling 10 -15 m logs down the river and smaller pieces being drawn by horse driven carts.
At one point the river narrowed with steep cliffs and caves hidden behind bushes. It was here that the German army had a first aid centre and stored supplies. It was also the point when they planned to ambush the Red army. There was a small museum at the turn around point and a picnic ground.
The return trip took only 90 minutes which was a relief. Sufficiently rocked, rattled and shaken for the complete trip.
There are a few obstacles along the roads in Romania, this cart was one of the smaller ones.
PS Jenelle is having a love hate relationship with the formatting!!
Arrived safely in Transylvania in the town of Sibiu, only slightly misty and light fog. It is light till fairly late and enjoyed strolling around the city squares and along the old wall. The squares were within the fortified walls and protected the guilds of many crafts. The blacksmith’s shop had a good array of industrial strength fasteners.
Note the 4 towers on the church, this meant the town had a legal system and justice would be metred out for criminal behaviour. (we escaped Sibiu without penalty)
Climbed the clock tower of the Lutheran church, the clock was very old, but the driving mechanism was very up to date (electronic). Pipe organ inside.
Outside there was a display of blacksmithing and stone masonery
Orthodox church with exquisite stained glass windows, gold leaf frescoes and intricate wood carving.
Road side stop along the way, a little sample of what we are expecting in the ARDF area. Interesting fungi. Not the edible kind.
At Biertan, fortified church with 3 walls of protection and if that failed there was the room with the door with many locks. The town was settled by German people and hence the buildings have a similar style about them. Many German people left Romania after Ceausescu was deposed, but send their bodies back to be buried in the cemetery here.
Food and hospitality is excellent in Romania. 250 mls of house white of exceptional quality for under $3 and then complimentary palinka and black currant “cordial”. We enjoyed a late evening stroll around the city wall at Sibiu.
We thought of you all as we headed off to the salt mine in Turda (this word causes me some grief) today. Salt mining was one of the main industries in Transylvania.
Many flights of stairs to the bottom, the queues were quite long for the lifts, so we got lots of exercise. To make it entertaining for the families they have installed a children’s playground on the bottom layer. Of course we had to ride on the ferris wheel, but there was also table tennis tables, pool tables, mini golf, even a pond with paddle boats but no coffee!!
Ewen is still puzzling how the walls stay up. If you take a vertical cross section it looks like a conical flask about 90 metres deep, with elevated platform at the neck. Not good if you don’t do heights very well.
Another interesting old wooden church tucked off the road on the way to Maramures. Inside was particularly interesting.