Friday the 13th   Leave a comment

Our annual Rogaine was planned for Saturday, 14th March (today), in the Ramot Menashe area, about 20 minutes from my home. I’ve been working on it for a year – mapping an additional 25 km² of terrain, planning, marking controls, updating the old part of the map, and more.

As the week progressed, most of the discussion was about the weather, with a “storm” predicted to start on Thursday evening and die down on Saturday morning. On Wednesday we made a final decision to go ahead, despite a forecast for some light rain during the day. We had 4 and 8-hour categories, and a 6-hour bike category which was cancelled. We also added some Corona virus precautions.


18:00 – I pick up the maps from Ziv, the ISOA general manager.


8:45 – Ofer and Yoni arrive at my house with the control flags and stands. I brief them regarding their set of controls.

9:00 – Pavel arrives with the SI units. We start dividing up the equipment.

9:10 – Yaniv arrives and sets off with his map and controls.

9:30 – Pavel and I set out (separately). On the way, I drive through a cloudburst.

9:55 – Ofer reports the first control as agreed, with a photo on the Whatsapp group.

10:00 – I place the first of my controls, in steady rain. The rain stops after that.

10:20 – Yaniv can’t find the ribbon at 71, and verifies the location by video.

10:25 – Pavel can’t find the ribbon at 52, I guide him to it using Whatsapp video.

10:50 – Ofer can’t find the ribbon at 93, but there’s no doubt about the location.

12:00 – Pavel can’t find the ribbon at 64, but he’s in the right place for sure.

12:15 – After placing 5 controls, I meet up with Gidi and Roi in the assembly area. They’ve brought an ATV and are going to place some of the less accessible controls. I’ve got one control left for myself.

12:37 – Just as I’m stopping the car to go to the my control, Ofer calls me. There’s a new government directive stopping all sports activities, with immediate effect, because of Corona.

12:39 – Noam (ISOA chairman) calls me. We discuss it, but there’s no way around it. Only training for individual athletes with no physical contact is allowed. No Rogaine tomorrow. We’ve placed 19 out of 30 controls, over an 80 km² area.

12:43 – I call Pavel to tell him to stop. He’s just placed a control, so he picks it up and goes home.

12:45 – I call Gidi, just before he places his first control. We agree to meet off the road nearby. Ofer is on the way as well.

13:00 – We meet. Gidi and Roi haven’t done anything yet, so they’re going to pick up as many controls as they can. We’ll find some volunteers to do the rest tomorrow.

13:30 – Gidi picks up the first control.


15:50 – I pick up the last control (with Alon, my son). There were several volunteers, of course, so this was the only one I did.


To say that I was pissed off yesterday is an understatement. We’ll probably hold the Rogaine in the end (that’s why the map below is without the controls), but it will probably be next year. The terrain was really beautiful, the streams all flowing after unprecedented amounts of rain in the winter, and I don’t think we’ll have such conditions again soon. But it could have been worse:

  • Saturday could have been a beautiful day – it wasn’t. In the end it was quite dreary, with a few mm of rain as well.
  • They could have stopped us an hour later, after all the controls were placed.
  • We could have postponed because of the weather, and been stopped by Corona on Sunday (after the original date).

The country is gradually descending into lockdown, as expected. Currently orienteering can still go on, because we can place controls in the forests and give people maps, and they can orienteer individually. Let’s hope we all get over this and return to normal as soon as possible.



Posted 14/03/2020 by dchissick in Uncategorized

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