Sunday, March 19, 2017

Trans Iowa v13: Notes On Cue Sheets

It is that time of year again for me to go over a few notes on the cue sheets and point you back to some previous posts that explain how I have done cue sheets since T.I.v8.

The first thing you will notice is that no one else does their cue sheets in this way that I am aware of. Most events that still don't cater to the "I gotta know the course ahead of time" crowd use the "tulip style" cues, which are fine, but I didn't have that format back in the day. The format I came across is what I have used since the early days of Trans Iowa and I have just refined it and made it a staple of the event.

While I am on the subject of courses and how many events do things, let me just say that "no- I won't offer GPS files and never will." That isn't at all what Trans Iowa is about. Unless you earn all the cue cards, or finish the event and have recorded it on your personal GPS unit, (which- yes- is allowed) there will be no record of the course in the future. For instance, there is no GPS of the T.I.v11 course, since the furthest anyone got was 128 miles that year. Yes, I have that course, and no, you cannot have it. I hope that is all clear.

Anyway..... Read THIS POST here about cue sheets and HIT THE LINK IN THAT POST! Between those two links you will learn 98% of what you need to know about the cues and how they work. THIS IS IMPORTANT! You must rely on the cue sheets to navigate, as there is no other way to follow the T.I.v13 course. Get this wrong and I guarantee you will get lost and not finish.

Important Note: I have decided that in order to streamline a couple of things, and to alleviate an issue we had with the finish last year, I am going to replace the "n/s" cue, (No Sign), with "Flagged". Here is what this means and what it does.

There are a few unsigned corners in this year's Trans Iowa. That isn't uncommon, so what I have done in the past is to use a stake with two neon yellow ribbons tied to it to mark the corner where you are to change direction. This will always be on the right hand side of the road nearest to the corner you are to turn at or where there may be a question as to which way to go. As a rider, you should then look left, right, or straight head. If you were to see a similar stake with two neon yellow ribbons on it on the right hand side of the road as you looked left, you would then turn left. This should agree with your cue sheet. Right hand turns would be indicated by a stake on the right hand side of the road to your right, and odd, "Y" corners, or anyplace where there is an unmarked directional change, would be marked in a similar manner.

All of these instances will have cues that line up with what the flags are telling you AND you will see "(Flagged)" on the cue at the end of that line. Here following is a sample cue:

123.6   R   On Switchback Ave (Flagged)

So, you will roll up at about 123 miles, see a stake on the right hand side of the road with two neon ribbons streaming off it in the wind, and then look to your right. There should be, at that corner, another stake with two ribbons up the road to your right on the right hand side of the road. That indicates that you have found the turn at 123.6 miles on Switchback Ave and you should turn right at that point.

Make sense?

There will be bike paths
 It should also be noted that in past Trans Iowas I have utilized bike paths where they made sense. This will be the case again in T.I.v13, so please be alert and pay attention to the cue sheets.

Since the paths generally are not marked with street signage at intersections, you will see the "Flagged" notation on the cues to alert you to where there is a change of direction that takes you on or off of a bike path.

Finally, the "Flagged" designation will alert you to look for a change in direction where there would normally be no street signage, as was the case at the end of T.I.v12, where the final run in came through the service parking lot of a cemetery. Since those stakes/ribbons are hard to see at night, a designation on the cue may have led to riders seeing them instead of missing them as they did in the case of our first two finishers.

The stake.ribbon/signage will all be gone over again at the Pre-Race Meat-Up, but I wanted to get this info out so that riders can consider it now and perhaps ask questions if they have any now.

1 comment:

blooddoc23 said...

We have a number of them here in south Missouri. They get pretty pissed if you get too close to their nest. Last spring I was walking in the woods hunting some mushrooms and I started getting buzzed with what sounded like some sick sea gulls. I looked up and saw the plumage and was astonished that these were bald eagles! I had no idea why they were agitated. Walked a little further and spotted a nest up in a tree that was about the size of a Volkswagen. I got out of there so as not to disturb that noble bird. Later I saw some feeding on carrion on the side of the highway.