Affric Parking - IMPORTANT - PLEASE READ
Changes due to recent heavy rain
Information Update for Day 6, Sat 8th August
Day 6 Parking
Thank you to everyone who made Day 5's parking so successful, especially the last minute volunteers. We could not have managed this without you. I hope you enjoyed a great final day of the World Championships, that you didn't find today's courses too tough and that you are looking forward to running on the World Championships area on Saturday.
Please could you aim to arrive at Tomich about 90 minutes before your start time.
The plan for Saturday's parking is similar to Friday, although we have been asked to reduce the number of vehicles using the south side of the glen, and make more use of the parking at the Tomich Hotel.
- We plan to park the majority of cars in the arena car park.
- Campervans will be directed to the same car park as today.
- 4x4 cars will be directed to the south side, possibly using the campervan car park.
- We will probably park single occupancy cars at Tomich Hotel, and ask you to get a lift to the arena from other orienteers.
Traders & caterers will be similar to Friday.
As Friday, please obey marshals, pace your arrival and be patient if we have problems.
Information from Friday 7th
Firstly apologies for the melodramatic notices but we have been dealing with some serious concerns about the car parks over the past few days.
We expect serious problems if you all try to arrive early.
As a guide please could you aim to arrive at Tomich about 90 minutes before your start time.
If you are late at your start you will be able to get a punching start. Please also note that exits will not open until 1330 at the earliest.
We are hoping to get at least some traders in the arena, but competitors need to be aware that the supply of food and merchandise is likely to be very limited. Where possible it might therefore be advisable not to depend entirely on the traders as the only source of food and drink.
Please read on for more details and an explanation of the problems we have had and how we plan to overcome them with your help and cooperation.
We originally planned to park all cars at Affric in the arena field. Since then a few things have happened:
- We have had far more entrants than expected. The consequence is that we have about 30% more vehicles than expected.
- We have had the wettest year on record and the field is wetter than the farmer has ever seen it. It looked much better a few weeks ago.
- The entrance to the field has been damaged by heavy vehicles that had to install a temporary bridge across the river.
- The farmer also manages the field we parked in at Strathfarrar on Day 2. As you know we had some major problems. He is much more concerned about the field at Affric, and he knows it well. It may look reasonable to the untrained eye but he could not guarantee that it would be useable for one day, let alone two.
The field has one entrance – i.e. if we make a mess of it there is no other way out. There is one single track road to the arena. This is 7km long and the final 3km is unmade with few passing places. If we get any vehicles stuck at the entrance we have enough cars to create a 10-12km traffic jam – all the way back to the main road in Cannich. I’m sure you will appreciate that this is a risk that we cannot take as we cannot even imagine how we would reverse everyone out again.
Yesterday the Affric Day organisers, the farmer and I spent the day looking at backup parking areas. Willie Birnie, the farmer, deserves a medal for his help and we now have 4 additional fields which will give us the flexibility to park the cars and ensure that you will all be able to run. These are located anywhere between 200m and 4km from the arena. The good news is that the furthest areas are reasonably close to the Day 5 starts.
We are confident that we have a flexible plan to use the fields on both days. Our plan tomorrow is to get as many people as possible into the car parks closest to the arena. To minimise risk & damage we’re going to do this carefully. Initially we will send about 50 cars at a time up to the arena field from Tomich to avoid a traffic jam on the unmade road. Because of the distance this will take time so we will send the majority of early cars to the east side of the river close to the arena and the finishes. Although it is a little rough it is a well drained sloping field. If we find that we can get cars into the arena field without any problems we will send more cars with increasing frequency. If we run into problems we will only park a few hundred there and the rest will be parked near the Tomich Hotel. This is about 4km from the arena and about 1.5km from the starts.
Campervans will all be directed to a parking field on the east side of the river approximately 2 km from the arena and close to the starts.
Buses will drop off passengers on the east side of the river approximately 2.5km from the arena and 500m from the starts.
From 1100 the equipment team will ferry clothing from the Tomich Hotel car park and the bus drop off area to a clothing dump on the east side of the river near the temporary bridge. Please note this is for clothing only and the team cannot be expected to move large bags as they do not have the capacity.
Please take care walking to starts from the arena, and to the arena from more distant starts as you will be sharing the roads with traffic entering the arenas. Please be considerate and let traffic pass you to ensure parking runs smoothly. If you are driving please take extra care and obey speed limits.
Please be considerate to marshals, many of whom have only volunteered today. Many thanks if you have.
We expect serious problems if you all try to arrive early. As a guide please could you aim to arrive at Tomich about 90 minutes before your start time. If you are late at your start you will be able to get a punching start. Please also note that exits will not open until 1330 at the earliest.
Lastly bringing the 2 large catering vehicles (Stovie Castle and Tomintoul Venison), the ice cream vans and the coffee vans in to the arena field is considered too risky and they will not be there tomorrow.
We will decide about Saturday tomorrow - once we know how the field is performing. Many thanks for your understanding
Richard Oxlade, Gareth Bryan-Jones & David Nicol
On behalf of the Central Organising Team Day 5 organising team