EMPO Times Spring 1996

The Winter Season

We had kind of an amazing Winter season this year. If you recall, there was oodles of snow early, then just before our two Ski-O meets came the "great washout" on January 19th. The snow just vanished! Well, actually it didn't vanish, it turned to water and flooded everything, including Vischer Ferry Preserve, the State Forest in Massachusetts where the US Champs were scheduled, and my basement. I suppose those who live on high ground and hate snow loved it, but it sure put a damper on the Ski-O season. Surprisingly enough, the race scheduled for Sugarloaf/USA ski area in Maine was still held that weekend, and my family actually got to it, eventually; but from then on all the local meets across New York state were canceled until mid-February, and those were held in pretty marginal conditions (you sure didn't want to be using your "good" skis).

Finally we got some snow again, and the season closers were held, though they had to be moved to some of the snowiest places in the Eastern half of North America: Tug Hill, Saranac Lake, and the Laurentien mountains. At the Empire State Games at Tug Hill (Winona State forest), we were just warming up. A number of EMPO members participated, and did OK. The only one to win a medal was Susan Hawkes-Teeter, who brought home the Silver in the Women's Masters category. Because that area has been used a number of times recently (CNYO holds a race there at the beginning of every season it seems) this race was a Score-O format, though rather longer than Score-O's usually are, as befitting a Championship event. The skiing was remarkably good, though punctuated by a few streams which washed through the trails and required some careful consideration as to how to negotiate them. The weather was fine, and everyone had a good time and was thankful that it was possible for the event to be held.

It was the following weekend, at the rescheduled US Ski-O Championships, that EMPO truly shone. There are a lot of winners (Male/Female x Master/Open/Junior x Short/Long =12) but EMPO took home five of them, including three (of six) overall champs (combining short and long): Matt George, Jamie Lewis, and Phil Hawkes-Teeter. We also had some second and thirds, so while it is not yet confirmed, I believe we took the Perm Trophy as Champion US Club, awarded by Orienteering North America. It's a great triumph for us, and I'd like to thank all the participants, especially Eric Hamilton and the parents of the Juniors for getting them to the races in Saranac Lake and Morin Heights, Quebec. I know the "Trek to Quebec" was a lot longer than it would have been if the races had been held in Massachusetts as originally planned, and it was great that so many Juniors were able to get there.

Now that we have this one under our belts, we'll have a great chance to keep it rolling next year, because the US Champs will be hosted by none other than EMPO. That's right, the Empire Orienteering Club will be putting on the US Ski-O Championships, and we'll be doing it at Garnet Hill Cross Country Ski Center, in North River, NY, near the Gore Mountain downhill area. The first day of this event will also be the Empire State Games Ski-O, so we expect a great crowd, a great race, and a lot of fun. Mark your calendars now for the first weekend in March '97, and get in shape! Or just race anyway, even if you're not in shape. One of the great things about all forms of Orienteering is that it's just plain fun, "no matter what shape your stomach is in", as they used to say in some commercials. Just be there! Help us defend our title, or just cheer us on, but join us!


There is another form of Orienteering, I think. Oh yeah, Foot-O. Actually that's kind of an ugly term, and "O"-on-foot is a bit awkward. Someone proposed "Shoe-O", but that seems downright silly, so I guess we'll just have to go with "O", and Orienteering if we want to be formal. Whatever we call it, the new season is dawning. I've actually brushed the cobwebs and mud from my "O" shoes and trotted through my local park (Thacher) once already. As it turned out, I almost could have skied. Thacher Park is on the North side of the Helderbergs, and the snow lasts pretty long there, but it was still fun to get out and work a few different muscles, such as they are. My triceps at least were very happy not to have to push ski poles anymore.

We have our usual assortment of great events planned for this season. Starting off on April 27, our reigning Club Champ is going to do his penance by putting on the Opener. It will be a Score-O, which means , if you don't know, that you can hit the controls in any order. If you've never been there, Peebles Island is an interesting place, located where the Mohawk flows into the Hudson. It's not very big, either, so it makes a good first Meet location, since you can't get too lost or have to run too far. Unfortunately, late word has it that in the new political climate we are now faced with a charge for group use of the park, and we may be forced to ask for a modest "contribution" of an additional $1 or so to cover it, but I'm certain it'll prove worth it.

Next up comes our most infamous Meet site: Vischer Ferry Preserve. We have scheduled three Meets there since Eric Hamilton finished the map, and none have come off. The first was a Ski-O, and there was no snow. OK, that's not so unusual. Next we tried a regular O-on-Foot. Major rainstorms and the rising Mohawk essentially put parts of the courses underwater, and not having a lot of Scuba-O members, that Meet was canceled too. Most recently, this past winter, we tried a Ski-O again, and this time we had both: no snow, and flooding (which froze to ice). So, here we go again! Any bets on what will happen this time? If ever there was a Meet to check with the Meet Director to make sure it's happening, this is it. Eric has had plenty of time to fine tune his map and courses, so you really ought to try to make this. Besides, global warming might put the whole thing permanently underwater soon. Do it while you can!

Finally, we have a return to Norray Farm, after an absence of a few years. This site is a wonderful example for all of us, because it's a nice piece of private land in the country that the owner's family decided to map. It's very typical country land for this region, and it makes great running or hiking. Bring a picnic lunch, and afterwards the Club will discuss what's ahead, in particular the upcoming Relay Teams, Fall Schedule, and the "A" Meets we'll be putting on.

One final note. I was hoping to have more information by now, and I don't, but the United States Orienteering Federation is putting on its annual Junior Camp in our area this year. Juniors from across the country will be coming to learn and train on our own Thacher Park map. They'll be staying at nearby Camp Pinnacle. Our own Juniors, however, can simply stay at home and still attend. This is a great opportunity for us, and any young person with an interest in orienteering should hold the 22nd & 23rd of June free for the Camp. We'll have information at our Meets, once it's released.

Local Results

There were no results from our local Ski-O's because they were canceled. Also, The full results from the Fall Club Championships appear to have been irretrievably lost. Yes, the Dog ate our homework, er, I mean results. If they ever turn up, I'll print them. What I have to print are the final standings of the leaders in The North American Ski-O Cup. This was a series of six top level races in the US and Canada. EMPO took most of its points at the Dewey Mountain and Morin Heights US Champs events, where our Juniors did so well, as noted above.

Open Men
1  Scott Pleban        USA    186
2  Pierre Tetreault    CAN    164
3  Brian Graham        CAN    157
4  Jon Sundquist       USA    125
5  Mitch Collinsworth  USA    113

Open Women
1  Sharon Crawford     USA    154
2  Pam Flynn           USA    133
3  Marie-Catherine Bruno CAN  132
4  Laurie Collinsworth USA     99
5  Marketa Graham      CAN     97

Masters Men
1  Phil Hawkes-Teeter  EMPO   185
2  Richard Lavine      USA    101
3  Bill Meldrum        CAN     80
3  Ernst Linder        USA     80
5  Richard Guttormson  CAN     70

Masters Women
1  Sara-Mae Berman     USA     77
2  Dayle Lavine        USA     77
3  Judy Meldrum        CAN     77
3  Lorna Guttormson    CAN     77
5  Susan Hawkes-Teeter EMPO    70

Junior Boys
1  Matt George         EMPO    77
2  Michael Waterhouse  EMPO    70
3  Paul Dawson         CAN     40
3  Ryan Duda           USA     40
5  Peter Weissbrod     USA     37
6  Willem Oswald       EMPO    35
6  Jan Cocian          CAN     35

Junior Girls
1  Justine Hutchinson  CAN     40
2  Jamie Lewis         EMPO    40

Some additional noteworthy results from last year's Spring/Summer/Fall orienteering seasons have recently been announced. The USOF annually compiles a ranking of all members who compete in at least a couple of "A" Meets. The 1995 rankings are now out, and EMPO had two very highly ranked members: Janet Tryson is #4 in the F40 class, and Marty Hawkes-Teeter made it to #1 in the M12. I know both of them worked hard, and had a lot of fun, orienteering last year. Let's all give them a cheer, and hope they can do as well or better this season, along with a few more of us. It only takes two days of "A" Meet attendance to get ranked now, so if you haven't tried attending one yet, sign up for one. The New York State Champs in May would be a good choice, so I'm including the information for that event in this EMPO TIMES. For ranking, you do need to be a USOF member, not just an EMPO member. Besides ranking, and reduced entry fees at "A" Meets, you get Orienteering North America, which is obviously a great publication since they are printing an article I've written.

Info on the 1996 Billygoat Run

"The most important orienteering event in the world"

APRIL 21, 1996


The Billygoat is a mass-start event about 13 km or so long. The climb is 500-600 meters typically but could be more. Water, sports drinks and food will be provided at the water stops. Following is explicitly permitted. To make things a bit more interesting, you will be allowed to skip any one control that you feel like.

All official finishers (3 1/2 hours or less) will receive the coveted Billygoat T-shirt (the ONLY way to get one, aside from being a Billygoat Director).

Check-in at 10 AM, 11 AM start. Enter by April 10, send US$10, payable to New England Orienteering Club, with your t-shirt size, name, address, phone number, year of birth and club to:

Robert Galejs, Head Goat
8 Kristin Drive
Chelmsford, MA 01824
e-mail: galejs-at-ll-dot-mit-dot-edu

Late registration on the day of the event US$15

O For the Old: Empire State Senior Games

The Empire State Senior Games have undergone a major reorganization. The qualifying age has been reduced from 55 to 50, and orienteering has been reinstituted as a competitive medal awarding sport. The 1996 ESSG events will occur beginning Wednesday, June 4, and culminate Sunday ,June 9. Orienteering takes place at noon, Saturday, June 8, at Green Lakes State Park, just east of Syracuse. The $25 entry fee gets one into all sports he/she chooses, as well as a host of recreation activities and more. A good turnout for the orienteering will help keep it on the schedule in future years. Entrants MUST pre-register by May 15. For information and the application form write:

Empire State Senior Games
New York State Parks Central Region
6105 East Seneca Turnpike
Jamesville, NY 13078-9516
or call: 315-492-9654 or -1756 during the day.

O For the Young

Periodically EMPO gets a request from someone for a nice pamphlet that the USOF put together a few years back called Orienteering for the Young. It deals with how to get youngsters started in orienteering, and covers a number of basic topics. Unfortunately the pamphlet has been out of print, but now it has been restored on the Internet. It can be reached here.

If you don't have Internet access and would particularly like a copy, call me, Phil Hawkes-Teeter, at 872-1993, and I'll try to print one and bring it to one of our Meets.

Spring Schedule

April 27, Saturday, EMPO Peebles Island, Waterford, NY, String, White, Yellow, and Score-O courses. Registration 10-12. For information contact: Brian Moore 518-273-4530, e-mail mooreb-at-cs-dot-rpi-dot-edu

May 4&5, Saturday-Sunday New York State Orienteering Championships, Hammond Hill State Forest, Dryden, NY, hosted by Central New York Orienteering. Pre-registration required; postmarked by April 15 avoids late fee. Contact Anne Buraczynski 302-368-4455, e-mail 72370.326-at-compuserve-dot-com

May 11&12, Saturday-Sunday Ottawa Interclub Meet, Two Day "A" Meet, Buckingham, Quebec, and Nepean, Ontario, hosted by Ottawa Orienteering Club. Pre-registration required; postmarked by April 26 avoids late fee. Contact Bert Waslander 613-234-6966 or Vince Fagnan e-mail vfagnan-at-sparky-dot-crad-dot-dnd-dot-ca

May 18, Saturday, EMPO Vischer Ferry Preserve, Clifton Park NY, White, Yellow, Orange, Green & Red courses. Registration 10-12. For information contact: Eric Hamilton 518-371-7548

June 1, Saturday Pratts Falls County Park, Pompey, NY, local CNYO Meet. SWYOGR, Registration 11-1, contact Pete Dady 607-746-8308

June 2, Sunday, EMPO Norray Farm, Berne, NY. Directions: From Altamont take Route 156 West up the hill towards Knox & Berne. Stay on 156 beyond the left turn to Thacher Park, then turn left on County Route 254 (Pleasant Valley Road). Continue 3.5 miles to Norray Farm, on the left. String, White, Yellow, Orange, & Red courses. Registration 11-1. For information contact: Phil Hawkes-Teeter 518-872-1993, e-mail philht-at-gnn-dot-com

June 15, Saturday Pine Hill, Marathon, NY, local CNYO Meet. SWYOGR, Registration 11-1, contact Mark Dominie 607-849-3101, e-mail Dmjcarto-at-aol-dot-com

June 16, Sunday Highland Forest County Park, Fabius, NY, local CNYO Meet. SWYOGRB, Registration 11-1, contact Shawn Forney 315-472-6518, e-mail 76347.1753-at-compuserve-dot-com

June 22&23 USOF Junior Camp, Thacher Park, New Scotland, NY. Further information will be available at our Meets once it is published.

July 20&21, Saturday-Sunday North American Rogaine Championships, hosted by CNYO. Pre-registration required. Contact Ed Kobos 315-797-6096, e-mail kobose-at-partech-dot-com

August 10-25 North American Orienteering Festival

Saturday August 10-Wednesday August 14, Canadian Orienteering Championships, locations around Ottawa, Ontario. Contact Lorna Guttormson 613-226-3947, e-mail ag225-at-freenet-dot-carleton-dot-ca

Saturday August 17-Sunday August 25, American Orienteering Roundup, locations in Harriman State Park and West Point, NY. Contact Rick Slater 609-758-0785, e-mail rdslater-at-splash-dot-princeton-dot-edu