Turf Blog 02-12-23

Turf Zone – BattleAbbey

2nd December 2023 and it’s time for Task No. 2 of the Turf Scotland Advent Calendar 2023. This one is called Turfing Bad and was inspired by the titles of TV series Breaking Bad. The challenge requires you to build a meth lab in your kitchen and brew up some methamphetamine. Oh, don’t worry, only joking, you can use the garage if you prefer. Task as follows. How hard can it be? Not very, as it turns out.

Easy Option
Collect at least 500 points by taking zones that contain 2-character periodic element symbols in their zone name. The points value equals the atomic number of the element. These can be found in Periodic Tables. For example, zone Eskbank would give you: Es (Einsteinium, atomic number 99) and Ba (Barium, atomic number 56). Note: 2-character periodic element symbols only.

Challenging Option
As Easy but collect 1000 points.

So, what’s the plan? Well, I’m thinking that there isn’t really one for this challenge. Rather than work everything out beforehand, thought I just take the Surly Pugsley fat bike into the countryside and grab all those zones I’ve lost over the past few days. Then, once back home, I’ll total up the scores and see what comes out.

And that’s exactly what I did, first grabbed the zones in the Newbattle woods, followed by a few in Dalkeith Country Park. Ended up with 28 zones in the bag. Once back home I pasted the zone names onto an Excel spreadsheet, listed the atomic numbers and their matching element characters beside them and did a running total of how many points I’d collected. Was most surprised to see I’d accrued 1127 points from the first 4 zones, completing the Challenging Option. At a rough guess, I would reckon the 28 zones would give me about 10000 points, if I could be bothered to sit down and work that out.

Must say I’m somewhat disappointed with this one, not realising that it would be so easy. I think next year, if I do another turf advent, I’ll use this one again but add a few more parameters to make it a little more challenging. Perhaps using only the first two, or the last two, characters of the zone name, or going for higher points values such as 5000 and 10000. We shall see.

Copyright ©2023 Gary Buckham. All rights reserved.

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