Beginners Clinic

If you come to an EOOC Wednesday event and take a beginner’s clinic, these are the topics which will be covered. Information in [brackets] varies from event to event.The most important rule in orienteering is to check out and check back in with the start/finish person.

The course (loop) is marked on your map in purplish-red. The start (where you are now) is marked with a triangle. Visit the controls in order, return to finish, no later than [9:00 PM]. We do wait – and search, if necessary.

At the centre of each circle, on a feature, is an [orange and blue] ribbon, with a control code marked on it.

There will also be a control description on the map.

The controls are listed in the order you must visit them. Next to the sequence number is a control code, usually a 2 digit number. This will be marked on the ribbon, so that you know you have found the correct one. The next column is the feature the control is on.

Each participant decides how to get from one control to the next. The short/easy course follows ‘handrails’ such as trails, fences, edges of fields. The medium and long courses will have a choice of routes.

The map – is produced and paid for by the Orienteering club, to international specifications


[white] is forest, so that other things show up well
green(s) are thicker forest; the darker the green, the thicker the forest
yellow is open (sun shines on it)
blue is wet stuff – river, ponds, marshes, streams etc
brown is contours – little tag lines indicate down hill
black for buildings, trails, fences

nearly everything on the map is on the legend.

You can get an idea of the scale of the map by relating the size of the [parking lot] on the map to the [parking lot] on the ground.

Orient the map with the terrain.
Put the start triangle against your body, with #1 away from you. Turn yourself until features match your map. The map is now oriented to get to first control.
Keep your map oriented at all times. Illustration of this essential technique.

Fold and Thumb – Fold your (oriented) map parallel to the direction of travel, about 4-5 cm away. Put your thumb close to where you are. Move your thumb as you reach another known location. Illustration of this essential technique.

Remember the most important rule – check out and check back in, whether you finish the course or not.

the above applies to a Wednesday evening point-to-point event.

For a Score event, you may visit the controls in any order within a specified time limit.

For a Pick Your Own event, you pick a set number of controls to visit, in any order.

At a forest event, you will be looking for a three-sided orange and white cloth “flag” (sides about 30cm square). You will insert an electronic card into a box. The finish may not be at the same place as the start.

Comments are closed.