Orienteering in Catalina State Park and the Santa Cruz bikes demo

Second control: punched!

It was hot. 

Grass! Shade! I'm not moving from here.

JF finished (his much longer and harder) course before us and came to join us for the last few controls.

Almost there!

1st and 2nd place went to the Yukon!!! And he thought he would be rusty!

Best post-race food!

Best post-race activity!

Digging contest!

We went to spend Saturday evening with this cutie and her family (Karl's sister's family), sat outside and watched the full moon rise over the Catalinas and washed our (very, very dirty) climbing ropes in their bathtub.

On Sunday, Santa Cruz organized a demo from 9 to 3 pm during which we could try any of their bikes (fully adjusted) for free. We had a blast! Now, I understand why these bikes sell for $5,000 to $8,000... It's a completely different category. We did not get to try any this fall when we visited the Santa Cruz headquarters. After the ride Mathilde said: Mom, that's what I want for Christmas. Only that. No Lego. Well, of course!

Bonfires. Almost nightly.

Friday night, JF taught the kids how to read the map and use the compass for orienteering.

JF discovered orienteering when we lived in Toronto in 2002. He was doing adventure races and met with a fun group of athletes that he ran with weekly (orienteering is part of many adventure races. Then, we moved to the Yukon, he found out that there was a very active club and really got into it (and became vice-president from 2005 to 2008). Every time we go back to the Yukon, he tries to get the girls to participate in this sport that he loves (last year, unfortunately, the meets were at the same time as their mountain bike class). The girls did their first meet in 2010 (they were so tiny!)

Needless to say, when we found out there was a week long series of races in Tucson, we decided to go check it out. Orienteering in the desert is quite different than in the North. Granted, there are no bugs, but the vegetation is much more aggressive... JF's legs were so scratched after his race! You should have seen him grimaced when he soaked his legs in the cold river!