Yesterday we met at Flaming Geyser for tracking. We decided to work at the far end of the park where the grass is kept mowed short, so it would be more like a sports park. Also, Nadine wanted to take advantage of the chance to track through standing water. The conditions were misty and cool.
We started with a short track of a large double serpentine curve. The water was a large puddle on a driveway and where we crossed the corner it was no more than a couple of inches deep. It had aged 10 minutes. Gimme did well with this and had a good time, though she was a little pussy-footed about the water.
The second track was also mostly on short grass, except for crossing a road right at the start and then crossing (and turning) on a cement pad near the end. We had several chances to track through standing water - good thing I keep my wading boots in the car all the time. Again Gimme got to go first, it was aged about 15 minutes.
Gimme made the first and second corners, but missed the first article, an eyeglass case. I think she was just going too fast. There was no flag on the second corner because it was marked by a drinking fountain (tiny blue square). She did fine on the next turn, but was really confused by the firepit (two-tone grey circle). It was full of ash and burned dirt, so I'm sure it was a big puzzle. She did finally go through it and was the only one of the four girls to do so. The others walked around it (4' diameter) and picked up the track on the other side.
From there she got a glove, made another turn and then went through a shallow puddle in the grass, right to a glove on the edge of the cement pad for a covered picnic area. From this glove, the track turned left and went between the covered area and three support poles. This leg was the longest - easily 150 yards, with a glove in the middle. After the glove it approached a playground area, with a lot of standing water on one end, which transitioned to puddle on grass.
The next turn brought us to a large covered picnic area with many picnic tables. The track went right into the covered area between two tables and then turned right to end at a glove 8 feet away. Gimme had no problem following the track into the covered area, but then started sniffing the tables. It was like she was momentarily confused and thought we were suddenly doing nosework. I cued her "track-on", then she went "Oh yeah, tracking..." and went back to work. She easily made the turn and got to the last glove. She's never tracked into this kind of spot before, but has seen picnic tables/areas many times in nosework practices, classes and at a few trials. So I think its an honest mistake and we need to practice tracking through that kind of area again.
Even after all this tracking, Gimme wasn't convinced she'd done her share, so I set her up an article oval. One long leg of the oval went through some really rough ground and Gimme never missed a beat. She found all her articles and then was happy...
LATE BREAKING NEWS FLASH
Just got notice that Gimme passed on her novice RallyFrEe video entry, giving her the third leg (to a new title). This makes her 15th title! Can't wait to get the individual score sheet and see how the scoring came down. She improved her score by 12 points. We are going to focus on fundamentals over the next couple of months. We have to have 140 points to pass an intermediate entry (125 for novice) and even more for higher classes. So I want to make sure we are doing the best we can at the basics. I'll probably enter novice at least once more - if its allowed. Yayyyy Gimme...