Just came from class, it was interesting.
They had cordoned off the front one-third of the room and using expens and sheets, made three long narrow channels. The channel next to the wall was a dead end.
The first time we came in there was no odor in this area. They set a single hide in the bathroom, but the door was shut. Our task was to simply observe how the dog acted (off leash), what they looked like when searching an area with no odor. Then when we thought they'd done all the looking they wanted to, we took them to the bathroom to end with an easy hide.
Interestingly all the more experienced dogs put effort into searching an area where they smelled no odor - they seemed to trust that if we said search there must be something there. Gimme was even making that chuffing noise, which I only hear when she is working especially hard. Still her demeanor was very calm throughout. As I put my hand on her harness to guide her toward the bathroom, the bathroom door was opened and you could really tell the instant she caught the odor even though we were still 20 feet away and around a corner. Suddenly she was very intense and very interested.
For our second run there was one hide on a chair at the far end of the channel by the wall. The sheets didn't go all the way to the ground, so all the dogs caught it from the middle channel. Of the dogs I got to watch, Gimme was the only one that figured out without help to go to the other end of the middle channel so she could get into the channel by the wall.
From there we went back into the entry alcove while they set a second hide. As we re-entered the area, Gimme immediately went to the far channel to the first hide she'd found. She never forgets something she gets peanut butter for finding. Then she found the other one pretty quickly.
Our last search was the other two-thirds of the room, where they had 9 plastic chairs set in a 3 by 3 grid and three hides forming a triangle. The search would have been really easy, except they had all the overhead fans on. Gimme found two hides really quickly, but the third one just seemed to take her a long time. In hindsight, it reminded me of when she got caught in converging odor at the Nooksack trial interior.
I wish I had taken a moment to put her on leash. She's the fastest dog in class and sometimes that works to our detriment. I think she slows down and gets more focused when I put her on leash part way through a search, so it would have been an interesting experiment to try it here where she was having difficulty.
BTW she is coming in season and so will be wearing the dreaded panties for the Barn Hunt trials this weekend and for the NW2 trial the following Saturday. Naturally the NW2 trial is at exactly the hardest part of her season for her to focus... wouldn't ya know it...