We opted for the approach of “plan for less and you can always get more”, but in a way where we wouldn’t skip too much early on. Our starting plan actually excluded controls 50, 34, 31, 12 & 23, and also had a potential shortcut from 61 to 49 if we were running short on time. However, we were able to exceed our own expectations pace-wise, making very good time through the more open and runnable eastern half of the map. We did have a couple of early hiccups, being unsuccessful in finding control 56 – we must’ve been close, but the gully was slow to traverse, the vis was poor and everything looked the same, so we opted to move on after just 1 attempt. Perhaps foot pads would have formed to help us had we tried later.

The straight route choices proved to be fast in the east, but that changed as we progressed west, and we were a bit slow to learn – in particular, we bottled a fair bit of time going directly from 44-73 and 62-51, where we could have used the tracks/roads. Once we adjusted, we were able to stay ahead of schedule the whole way, allowing us time to pick up the group of 3 to the SE of HH, which proved to be the difference between 1st and 2nd. In hindsight, we could have also picked up 63, or maybe spent longer looking for 56, but ultimately we still exceeded our expectations both physically (especially Oscar B, he dragged me through the last hour) and mentally, and had a great day out!

See below our eventual route, marked in orange:

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