A New Ski-O Participant
The 1997 Ski Orienteering Champs and Empire State Games Ski-O Finals
hosted recently by EMPO at Garnet Hill in the southern Adirondacks was
1) my first time as Registrar for a national-scale event and 2) my
first Ski-O competition. I think things went very well in both
With less than 80 attendees, keeping track of registrants was made
easy with the use of a spreadsheet. Other meet officials (the meet
director, publicist, start chief and results chief) all used the
information I put together, so I had work at keeping it accurate.
Packets were stuffed ahead of time with the help of meet director Bill
Jameson, results chief Glen Tryson and my 8-year old son Robert.
Once we got to Garnet Hill, setting up the packet pick-up area was
made easier with the help of other volunteers and the staff of the ski
center. I don't recall any problems or complaints with the packet
pick-up procedure or the registration process in general.
E-mail registrations were allowed for this event. To do registration
for a larger event, I would not allow e-mail registration because
there's too much opportunity for abuse of the system; that is,
registering but not paying, and then deciding not to show up. At this
event, were only a couple of cases where people registered but didn't
come (or pay). Because a large number of the participants had access
to the Internet and e-mail, they could get information quickly and
easily from me if needed; get updates on weather and snow conditions;
and receive information on results shortly after the meet ended.
As my introduction to ski-orienteering, this event was both fun and
educational. The people who excel at this particular sport spend a
lot of time preparing for it - I could tell that my lack of
preparation influenced how well I performed on the course (I hadn't
been on cross country skis for over a year and it showed!). The
challenge of ski orienteering is keeping track of where you are on a
gridwork of trails as you challenge yourself physically on cross
country skis, much like Foot-O offers you a similar challenge on foot
in the woods. Personally, I get more opportunities to run than I do
to cross country ski, and so prefer the foot version. I made a route
choice (tactical) error on the second half of my course and ended up
knee-deep in snow in a misguided bushwhack attempt, where taking the
time to ski down the trail and then back up to the control would have
been more efficient. But hey, everyone makes mistakes, and every
event is a learning experience. All in all, I thought the course was
well-planned and enjoyable. I may even try ski-orienteering again, if
we ever get enough snow in our area!
My thanks to every one of our club members at the event [I'm sure
you've listed them elsewhere, Phil] including my sons and helpers,
Greg and Robert; plus Carol and Tom Moran of the Rochester O Club who
helped out Saturday morning as they collected Empire State Games
registrations and distributed ESG uniforms; and the staff of Garnet
Hill Cross Country Ski Center, who were always there to lend a hand
and provided a great location to have this competition.
- Janet Tryson