After a long, hot summer the AUTC 12 Hour Rogaine returned to the Waitakere Ranges in the murky depths of winter. At the stroke of Midnight, forty-one blinding headlamps from fifteen teams raced out from Karekare Beach on a wild mission:
The Karekare 12 Hour Rogaine.
|JJ Wilson, Tim Farrant and Ryan Thompson arrive from Christchurch ready to blitz the field|
|Les Marauders des Montagnes race off into the night|
After the initial success at the Bethells 12 Hour Rogaine in July 2011, I was determined to set this event into tradition. This year Leighton Watson headed up the organisation of the event - with the help of several other members of AUTC, he set an incredible course incorporating the very best of the Southern Waitakere Ranges. From Piha’s roaring surf, Lion Rock and Kitekite Falls; from Karekare’s coastal tunnels, dunes, and high cliff-top tracks; from Whatipu’s caves, trig station and swamps - and even to the highest point in the ranges, Te Toiokawharu.
|The Med Marauders only too glad to see the sunlight after a long night|
This year’s clues took on a more cryptic feel, but teams could taste the change in control-setting styles as they journeyed between different areas, and experienced the different flavours that the setters had injected into the course. ‘Undecided’ was a clue for a control on a fence, ‘Call Me Maybe’ a broken telephone pole, ‘Gorse course with a view’ – the wide expanse of the Whatipu Swamps was an eerie abyss for teams arriving in the pre-dawn murk.
|Matt powers back from Whatipu along the western sands|
Most teams chose to tackle the controls on the coastal dunes past Pararaha in the final five hours before noon. The warm black sands and salty swamp-water crossing enticed some to ditch their muddy foot-coffins, arriving barefoot at the Karekare finish on a summer-like morning. Teams were rewarded with extravagant slices of ganached chocolate cake, washed down by pumpkin and vegetable soup. Everything was ravaged, and after everyone sobered up from their Rogaine-hangovers Karekare was left without a trace.
|The Med Students put on a great show!|
Teams travelled from far and wide for the event: Team BG’s made the 3 hour trip from Dargaville and Tim Farrant’s team Rogaine Badasses flew up from Christchurch – only to take out the title with a solid margin. Anna Gray was a pivotal leader in rousing twenty Med students from the University of Auckland to get stuck in. Safety standards were maintained: all teams left intentions at the base, and each group included an experienced member. At six minutes past noon all teams had arrived back at base, all numbers were accounted for.
|Matthew Lillis arrives back to camp shattered but gleaming - a great adventure|
1. Rogaine Badasses (Tim Farrant, Jj Wilson, Ryan Thompson) 2700
2. Les Marauders des Montagnes (Matthew Lillis, Ben Duggan) 2320
3. BGs (Graeme Ewenson, Barry Ruddel) 2280
4. North & South (Rob Jarvis, Emma McCosh) 2060
5. Team Yoohoo (Thomas Goodman, Nic Harper, Alice Mason and Vanessa Somos) 1830
6. Med 1 (Sarah Liley, Karyn Schischka, George Wallace, Rach Goodwin, Alice Hawkins) 1740
7. Hastie’s Retreat (Tony Hastie) 1710
8. Med 3 (George Shand, James Klassan, Anna Gray, Rachael Bentall) 1620
9. Team Type 1 (Alan Dobson, Claire Dobson, Dennis Wakefield) 1510
10.Mechanics (Harriet Peel, Hamish Chen) 1480
11.Teamo Supremo (Anna Bergin, Joel Gibson) 1320
12.SBC Rogaining Division (Jonathon Chan and Dean Rawlings) 1240
13.Med 2 (Jimmy Chancellor, Sam Burridge, Ivan Robertson, Gareth le Grice) 1220
14.The Lost (Casey Bell, Stefan Milosevic and Lan Yin) 310
15.Crunchy Whitakers (Dan Roberts, Penny Kirkwood) 270