Epilog: Traps and Tricks
The answer to the first question, “Did you pass “ONE WAY”? was “YES”. This sign was not associated with a street and therefore was in an unexpected spot and was hard to see. It was a standard One Way sign, but was mounted at the exit of an industrial plant.
Perhaps the hardest trap on the rallye was the first. Teams were asked to simultaneously look for the One Way sign, the SOL Stockton Presbyterian Church, a left at the second opportunity and Seabrook Rd, all at the same time. While this was going on, teams came across a sharp curve to the right that led them to Brookville Hollow Rd which was straighter than a sharp turn to the left that would have kept them on Route 29. The correct route was to go straight on Brookville Hollow Rd, but that meant the first opportunity to turn left was the left to remain on Route 29. The second and correct opportunity to turn left was on Grafton Rd. If teams forgot to count that first opportunity to turn left, they would have counted Grafton Rd as the first left and would have incorrectly turned left at Sandy Ridge-Mount Airy Rd (Route 605). That incorrect turn would have cost teams 146 points. If teams completely missed the straight ahead on Brookville Hollow Rd and therefore remained on Route 29, they would have come to the SOL Stockton Presbyterian Church before they found a second opportunity to turn left and should then have followed the alternate instructions contained in the “IMPORTANT” note; this mistake cost 83 points. Eventually all teams ended up on course on Route 523 North looking for Covered Bridge Rd.
Instruction #11 was to make a right at the first opportunity. What appeared to be the first right was on Pavlica Rd, but that turn was actually a forced right because the only other choice was an unpaved road that went straight. Remember unpaved roads do not exist unless the route instructions tell you they exist. If a team incorrectly counted the Pavlica as the correct right turn they were off-course. The correct right turn was at Locktown-Sergeantsville Rd. This trap cost teams 0.91 points.
The route took teams on Route 519 and to a straight ahead that took teams off the road for only about 100 feet and then immediately put them back on Route 519. Teams that did this correctly would have seen the SOL “HEWITT ROAD” sign on the left. Teams that did this incorrectly by missing the straight ahead would see the SOL “HEWITT ROAD” sign on the right and would have incorrectly answered “No” to question #2. Question #3 asked if teams passed Hewitt Road, however Hewitt Rd was marked as a dead end and since dead end roads do not exist, teams should have answered question 3 with a “NO”. While the road didn’t exist for purposes of the rallye, the sign “HEWITT ROAD” did exist, so the correct answer to question 2 was “YES”.
Instruction #19 called for a L FOPP, then R at second OPP which may or may not be unpaved. Teams who treated the R at second OPP as a continuation of the L at FOPP turned on the wrong road and were short by about a mile. Teams that did this correctly should have answered question 5 as “Unpaved”.
Instruction #30 told teams to turn R onto FOPP after SOL “DEER RUN”. Since the general instructions require onto instructions to be identified by name or number, this instruction should have been treated as an “on” instruction and not an “onto” instruction. A note attached to this instruction pointed out that Sugan Rd turned right shortly after a bridge, thereby luring teams that incorrectly thought they were following an onto instruction to make this incorrect turn. Checkpoint #5 at “STOP” was at different locations depending on whether you were on-course or off-course, but both on-course and off-course teams made the L onto Aquetong Rd. Off-course teams were 0.91 miles long plus they missed one 50 point question. Furthermore they were 0.78 miles long on the following leg, making this trap worth 219 points.
Instruction #31 was CHECKPOINT #5 at “STOP” at Aquetong Rd. It then instructed teams to turn L onto Aquetong Rd, then R on Route 263 South. Since onto instructions remain in effect until the next numbered instruction, teams should have made the R on Route 263 South and continued to look for opportunities to remain onto Aquetong Rd until instruction #32. Teams that did this correctly made an immediate left on Aquetong Rd after the R on Route 263 South in order to remain onto Aquetong Rd. Teams that missed this turn ended up in Peddlers Village with an extra 1.85 miles.
Question #7 (Did you pass “HIDDEN VALLEY DR”?) was also a trap. All teams passed this sign, but some teams would have incorrectly answered “no” to this question. The reason can be found in the general instructions which tell you to begin looking for answers after you complete all the actions of the numbered instruction preceding it and continue looking until the first action of the next numbered instruction. However, the general instructions also tell you that questions are answerable while following a road by name or number. Since teams saw this sign while following a road by name or number (i.e., they were onto Aquetong Rd) the correct answer was “yes”. (50 points)
Instruction #38 was R FOPP after Signal. The general instructions define a SIG as an intersection controlled by means of a tri-colored light(s). However the instruction used the word “Signal” instead of the glossary term SIG and there was a picture of a signal on a sign as you approached the SIG intersection. Therefore teams should have turned at the FOPP after passing the picture of the signal which was the SIG intersection. Off-course teams passed by the SIG intersection and turned on the next opportunity to turn right. Since the mileage was almost identical for both the on-course and off-course loops, teams were asked how they executed the next either/or instruction. Teams which answered Choice #1 got it right. Teams which answered Choice #2 got penalized 100 points.
The trap on this leg combined a hard-to-see sign, an onto instruction and a straight ahead road. Instruction #49 had teams PU Route 604 (remember PU put you onto a road) but the instruction read “If you pass SOL RIP HTS “THE BLACKSMITH SHOP” you are no longer onto Route 604. The large blacksmith shop sign was mounted on a stone building, but was painted on a dark brown wooden background with black paint and was therefore hard to see. Teams that saw the sign were no longer onto Route 604 and therefore should have gone straight ahead on another road that was clearly straighter than remaining on Route 604. Teams that did not see the sign were still onto Route 604 and should not have taken the straighter road. The incorrect route was about a mile longer than the official route plus teams that did this incorrectly missed questions 9 and 10 for another 100 points.