Last Sunday, April 22nd, after church I met with the Ladies of Caliber for training. It was cool with minimal breeze, so I laid a simple c-shaped track of 390 yards . I was aiming to age the track to 2:30, but a very chatty newcomer wasted a lot of time and making the meeting run very long. The track ended up aging to 3:10!
I wasn't sure how Gimme would do, but it didn't seem much harder than the other older tracks had been. On the first leg, there is a driveway tip-out right before the trees. Gimme resisted crossing it and then went around it. She did a nice job on the first turn. The next challenge was crossing the road. Gimme resisted this for a bit, but then took the plunge, crossed the road and found the track on the other side. I suspect the article helped her. From there to the end she did well. She had to cross another driveway, but just did it with no fuss.
I am noticing that she has the most difficulty on the first leg and shows she is uncertain. When she gets to the first article her confidence goes up and she does much better through to the end.
On Thursday, April 26th, Nadine had another commitment, so I laid a track at Flaming Geyser. Since the first leg is the challenge for Gimme, I decided to make two short tracks. I aged them to 2:25. It was 80º when we ran them.
The tracks are both 150 yards, with an article at 75 yards, right turn 25 yards later and a glove at the end. The breeze is blowing from the left side of the picture and the first track is the track at the bottom. I set up Gimme's approach to come in 90º to the track direction (the short green lines show her approach).
She had no problem finding the direction on the first track, probably because the breeze was blowing scent in her face. She was more confident on this track than she has been and thoroughly enjoyed finding the article. She turned the corner too soon, rounding it by about 10 yards, but then angling to get right on track and was rewarded by finding a glove. The breeze blowing scent toward her probably caused her to turn early.
The dotted line shows my path between the two tracks. We took pretty much the same course moving to the second track, except swinging wide to create the approach angle for the start.
Gimme spent a little more time determining track direction, but then she lined out on it, pulling me behind her and was soon rewarded with an article. This time the breeze was blowing from behind us, so Gimme overshot the turn, but caught her own mistake, turned in the correct direction and angled to get on the track and was rewarded with the final glove.
I was very pleased with how well she did, especially since this is the first time she's tracked in hot weather in 6 months. Overall she seems to be getting the idea and gaining confidence on these aged tracks. She's one smart cookie...