The Odem Dilemna   Leave a comment

I've finished mapping the second part of Odem forest, and all is ready for a two-day event in two weeks time. Here is a map sample:
The timing of the event has caused me to do some thinking. The terrain is unique, probably the best in Israel, and definitely attractive for foreign orienteers. My original plan was to use it for the Israeli Championship, which is traditionally held in the second half of February and attracts 50-100 visitors from abroad, but the weather in that period is too risky (at 1000m above sea level…) so it would have had to be moved to March, but then the foreigners might not have come because their season has started, so the ISOA (our federation) decided to have the championship somewhere else. At least now I can participate!
Our second two-day event is the Winter Cup, usually held in late December – again, not an option because of the weather. So this year there is no Winter Cup, and the Odem event in mid-November is called the "Middle-East Championships". However, Odem is far away from most parts of Israel, so nearly everyone needs lodgings between Friday and Saturday, all the camping sites close at the end of October because it's too cold, and there are very few other cheap options.
Problem – we have this fantastic terrain, and we want to use it. Solution – next time, hold a two-day event (or three?) in the summer. Our season usually runs from October to May because of the heat, but Odem is much cooler, so we can hold an event in September or June and still enjoy it. There are various camping grounds in the area, and you can also just pitch a tent in the forest (I always find someone doing it when I arrive in the morning for mapping). And between the races there's sightseeing in the Golan Heights. But the foreigners, I fear, will come only for training during their off-season. Or maybe not…

Posted 07/11/2011 by dchissick in Uncategorized

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