The Northern Territory Rogaining Association presents
'Sweat & Swim'
6-hr Rogaine at
Saturday 7 October 2000
The only NTRA "bush" event of 2000, the Sweat and Swim Rogaine was held at
Manton Dam, less than an hour's drive from Darwin, during the early cusp of
tropical "buildup" weather.
The photo below shows the competitors receiving their final instructions before embarking on the event. The waters of Manton Dam can be seen in the background. Canoes were available adjacent to the administration area to enable competitors to cross the dam without getting (too) wet.
List of Results
John Ulrichsen, Annie Whybourne
Competitors receive final instructions for the Sweat and Swim Rogaine
Manton Dam, October 2000
Photo Courtesy of: Peter & Chris Slade
MAXIMUM POINTS 990
|Philip Brownscombe, Mark Raines, Daniel Burger. Ian Bulman
(late 4 minutes)
|Brooke Cunningham, Megan Salter||570||2||1|
|Jon Potter, Susi Bertei||550||3||1|
|Emma Fitzsimmons, Philippa Cotter||500||4||2|
|Ian Carr, Christine Gallagher||460||5||2|
|Sara Martin, Anna McKinley, Metta MacNeil||350||6||3|
|Maggi Richardson, Graham Cook, Liz Copeman
(late 9 minutes)
|Michael Bourcher, Yin Paradies, Michael Brand||290||8||2|
|Ingrid Bucens, Andrew O'Loughlin, Bart Currie, Vicki Krause||280||9||4|
|Dana Fitzsimmons. Kirsten Blair||270||10||4|
|David Palmer, Tony Galliford
(late 19 minutes)
|Gabrielle Driver, Aaron Driver||210||12||5|
|Margot Forbes, Cathy Gaylard||190||13||5|
|James Potter, Byron Farrell, George Moss||180||14||1|
|Ron Ninnis, Julie Mastin||170||15||1|
|Chris Tyzack, Jack Ellis||110||16||2|
|Larraine Shepherd, Anthea Duquerin, Kate Race||110||17||6|
|Jeroen Pope, Bronwyn Pope, Andrew Hall, Andrew McGinn||110||18||6|
|Cathy Parker, Gwen Draper, Kristina Hewer, Leontine Muis, Carmel Rankin||70||19||4|
|Tim Ellison, Jayde Ellison, Brooke Ellison, Luke Ellison, Trent Ellison, Matt Ellison||0||20|
|Peter Slade. Chris Slade
(>30 minutes late)
|Kate Ahmelman, Rachel Nolan (>30 minutes late)||500
Events are best judged on the basis of participants' reactions, and it
was very pleasing in this case to observe many tired but happy bodies
doing what comes most naturally at the end of a rogaine on Saturday 7
October 2000: eating, talking, and sleeping!
62 competitors (22 teams) took up the challenge set by the course
setter, Paul Sharp. About half of the teams stayed out on the course up
until the finishing time after dark, and they tackled the course in
several different ways.
The overall winners were Phillip Brownscombe, Mark Raines, Daniel Burger
and Ian Bulman, with an impressive score of 760. In second place and
winners in the Open Women category were Brooke Cunningham and Megan
Salter, with 570 points. Third overall and winners in the Open Mixed
category were Jon Potter and Susi Bertei, with 550 points.
Participants came from a wide age range, from 5 years to 57, and one of
the striking aspects of the results was that many of the mixed and women's
teams outperformed their male competitors.
Many people remarked on the interesting country on the course, as well
as the wildlife, and the novelty of paddling canoes across Manton Dam to
reach the northern half of the course was a winner. Mind you, when 9.00pm
was approaching not a few chose to simply swim back to the Hash House!
Many thanks are due to the people who contributed to the success of this
event- Paul Sharp (course setter), Annie Whybourne and John Ulrichsen
(course vetters), Annie Whybourne, Rachel Nolan and Gurmeet Singh
(catering), Jon Potter (sundry logistics) and many others who helped in
large and small ways- you know who you are!
Thanks are also due to the local traditional owners of the land, the
Larrakeyah, the Parks and Wildlife Commission, the Power and Water
Authority, and Kormilda College and Howard Springs Scout Group (for loans
of the canoes).
"Phil, Dan, wait up! Where are you guys, don't leave me in the
dark. Where's my compass? Oh no the batteries have died in my torch. Where
am I? What was that splash
I awake in a cold sweat, my legs still smarting from a combination of
the scratches inflicted by the scrub and spending six hours following
compass bearing rather than map contours. Under the steady beat of the
ceiling fan in the half-light of dawn, I realized I was in my bed and I
must have been dreaming, or was it a nightmare?
I had survived my first rogaine, and in fact ended up coming in first
with the winning the team even, though my lesser physical fitness meant
that we had a four-minute penalty and lost 40 points.
The day started well paddling across Manton Dam, well stocked with
jellied snakes, water bottles, map and compass. We had decided on our
route negotiating the shortest passage with coloured pins and a piece of
string. I think Phil had done this before! The first marker was obvious
this is pretty easy and could be even be fun").
On to the next, sneakily hidden in a dark grove of trees. Going well. I
am not totally unused to guiding myself through the scrub with a compass
and map. A bunch of us went for a five-day walk near Koolpin creek earlier
in the year and managed to find our way out without any dramas.
Next marker is maybe up the hill here. Can't quite see it yet. Ah, Dan's
spotted it. Eagle-eye Dan, sounds like a good name. Still having fun!
These burrs are really hard to get out of your leg hair. And Phil's
running around in his speedos!
Three hours latter maybe this really isn't so much fun anymore. Dan and
Phil are definitely the fitter of the four of us. I must keep up might get
lost otherwise. More markers, more points. Good, good, good. I wonder how
the girls are going? Haven't seen anyone else for a while.
Where's the sun gone? Pity they don't put reflective strips on the
markers. I hope there are no snakes out and about, don't really want to
have to suck on anyone's bitten leg, least of all my own. Now to get
across this dam wall? Do you really think this is the best way to go.
Okay. Keep looking right there's a big drop to the left and not much water
below. Ouch! Funny place to leave a bit of metal, someone might trip and
No one fell and we all made it across. How many more markers to find?
That many. Oh well lead on. Darn all my jellied snakes are gone. Still I
should have enough body reserves for the last hour.
With 10 minutes to go, Phil and Dan broke out into a steady jog
encouraging Ian and me to join in. Me, who had come close to collapsing
just 2 hours earlier after scaling a steep incline. It was now dark, and
here we where jogging across what looked like a dried out buffalo-stomped
swamp. The uneven ground threatened to send me sprawling to the ground but
we managed to reach the road ankles intact. Finally the Hash house and "What,
everyone else is here!" and "Oh no we are late!"
Bugger, should have kept running harder! Oh well, off with this stinking
shirt, down with a litre of cold water, this grass feels good and I don't
care if I'm lying here in my jocks. I'm too stuffed to care. Ouch!
Mossies. Maybe I should cover up. A swim, cramp (to drown after all that
no way), great vege-burgers, more cordial and home.
Yes, we won and although there was no trophy there was more than enough
glory an self-satisfaction. I just might be mad enough to do this
We picked up the map at 1400. Thinking of the open South Australian
paddocks where I usually rogained, it appeared possible to pick up all the
checkpoints in six hours. We set a course going clockwise around the lake,
trying to get most of the big points while it was still daylight.
1500 Start: Our team of four- myself, Dan Burger, Mark Raines and Ian
Bilmon- dived into one canoe and began our sinuous course across the dam.
We were first to the other side but were soon overtaken by a mixed team,
who beat us to the first checkpoint, number 40.
Next was the bush bash to 31. We very quickly had burrs adhering to
every inch of our legs, working their way steadily into our socks.
1525: The mixed team that passed us disappeared into the distance, and I
realised we were not going to win this time.
After 31 was another traipse through the long grass to 60, which, thanks
to Ian's navigating, we found right away.
Did I say long grass? From 60 to 53 was a 2 kilometre slog through the
wilderness feeling like the Fukawi tribe. With no features to distract us,
we went straight to the gully containing 53. Too easy. Time 1615.
We walked north up the creek to the ridge, then took a bearing to 80.
Next stop was 61 at 1710, then straight down and up to 42 and a drink.
We then headed along a footpad to 54, one of the more scenic parts of
the walk. Legs were beginning to tire now, and a team we met just after 54
left us in the dust on the climb to 55, where we required ten minutes rest
and a clean out of our socks.
We then went north to the fence and were grateful to find a four-wheel
drive track beside it. This resulted in our breaking into a celebratory
trot to 56. The sun was getting low. We'd been left behind by two teams
already, and we were tiring. Cleaning up the course was not going to
We went south to the fence/track and followed it at good pace to a
corner, then navigated straight down the steep and slippery hill to 71,
which we picked up in the fading light. A quick scramble around the steep
rocky edge of the dam and we were at the north dam wall.
It was seven o'clock. We had a decision to make. Did we go south across
the dam, get 52, then recross the dam to 65 and barrel down the Stuart,
hopefully picking 62 and 64 up? Or did we get 65, then cross the dam to
52, 41, 32 and 43? We chose the latter, which meant a jog up to 65 and
back to the dam wall, which we negotiated in the dark. (Was that legal?)
52 was easy to find, then south to 41 and SSE up the creek to 32, a
somewhat lucky find. Time was running out. A cracking pace to 43. 20
minutes to 9 pm. Did we swim the dam or run the long way around the swamp
to the road? We ran. And ran. And ran. Would it ever end?
Then there was the car park and finally the hash house. We were four
minutes late, but it felt so good. Time for the most needed swim of our
I don't know how, but we'd won. Thanks to Paul, John and Annie for
setting a terrific rogaine. It was a superb location. The abundance of
fresh water and interesting country were thoroughly enjoyable.