Thank you to everyone who attended today’s event in Highams Park and Walthamstow Forest, and special thanks to the other volunteers within CHIG who helped with the event in advance and on the day. This was the first time we had used this area since 2016 and I decided on this occasion to focus on the northern section of the map, Highams Park, to have the White and Yellow courses make use of both the area’s open parkland and lakeside paths. Admittedly the rather indistinct nature of said lakeside trails did present a bit of a challenge in terms of achieving a TD1 course, and on reflection it would have been wise to tape at least some of the White course legs (apologies to any competitors who got lost as a result!).
As a whole, Highams Park and Walthamstow Forest represents one of the narrowest sections of Epping Forest and I had my doubts as to whether I would be able to produce suitably testing courses. Thankfully, clearing in recent years has made the southern section of the map more runnable but also more varied, allowing for a good range of legs with route choice. I also sought to challenge competitors with legs making use of controls in the middle area of the map, characterised by denser vegetation and generally less distinct paths (hopefully one day this area will be subject to similar thinning as the southern part). I appreciate that there we some grumbles about a few controls, particularly 133 (this took me fair bit of time to find both when taping out and placing the control), but I would like to think legs involving this control were ultimately fair. Thank you to those of you who provided positive comments on the courses but please also feel free to let us know if you felt any aspect could have been improved. Harold Wyber