Sunday, 23 February 2014

Forest Run - grass cutting and tractor riding

I had an excellent two days out at Lakenvlei on Wednesday and Thursday last week for one part of the big preparations for this coming weekend's Forest Run (Sat, 1 March). It's a forested ultra with 35km and 62km routes.

Komatiland Forests, owners of the plantation, have been absolutely awesome this year and they have slashe the grass on many of the tracks that I use for the race. Between my scouting visits in November and the event in March, the grass grows from ankle height to eyeball height - it's really crazy in places. And because the grass gets so long you can't see your feet - nor the track below. Now it is all beautiful and race-ready.

Together with Amos, driving the tractor, we slashed more than half of the route on Thursday; he completed the rest on Friday.

I've got Orienteering Schools League tomorrow (Monday) and then I'm off early on Tuesday morning to begin tagging the route. It's a lengthy - but enjoyable - manual process that takes a few days. I hope to be done with the tagging on Thursday morning so that I can focus on droppers and sign boards the same day and then have Friday for prepping the waterpoints. My helpful team (catering, medics, photographers, marshals, sweepers) come through on Friday evening and we'll be ready to roll on Saturday morning.

Some pics from my grass cutting adventure...

Before... looking ahead in the direction of running (the faint tracks you can see in the grass - that's where we drove through in a bakkie that morning). After... turning around to look back. Amazing!

Although I mostly walked ahead of the tractor, I did get in a few rides on sections that we were not cutting. Tractors are super cool.

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