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Practice Forest Navigation

Learn Forest Navigation

Organizers: Adam Woods (Event Director), Erica Lay (Event Director), Ian Saari (Coach), Scott Muma (Coach), Leif Anderson (Coach), Safder Raza (Coach), Jules Tough (Membership)

Map: McCartney Creek

New to orienteering? Been out to some events and looking to take your forest orienteering to the next level? Want to become a bushwacking ninja? Come on out to our Forest Orienteering Training Camp! This day of training will focus on demystifying the black art of navigating off-trail and developing effective strategies for orienteering in the forest.

You'll be able to put these skills to use right away this May at the Pig War (May 13-14th Cle Elum, WA), Sage Stomp (May 20-21st, Kamloops, BC) and our National Orienteering Week event at Robert Burnaby Park (May 28)!

We'll offer two options for training on Sunday: Learn Forest Navigation, and Practice Forest Navigation. The courses and exercises will be the same, but to help us plan how we'll distributed our coaching resources, please self select the course that best describes what you want out of the camp. Anyone with less than 2 years orienteering experience is suggested to register for the Learn Forest Navigation course.

Sunday's sessions will cover:

  • Review of key orienteering routines/practices
  • Reviewing forest terrain interpretation and features on the map
  • Planning a leg: handrails, attack points, catching features and "CAR" (Control-Attackpoint-Route) and "Stop Light" orienteering
  • Executing route plans in the forest: folding and thumbing the map, following a bearing, map simplification and precision orienteering
  • Relocation (if time allows)

The day will progress from safe and slow (AM) to mostly safe and fast (PM) and include the following exercises:


  • Precision orienteering
  • Attack points
  • Handrails


  • Bearings
  • Catching features
  • Simplification

Don't hesitate to contact Erica or Adam if you have any questions.

Where are we meeting?

At the road junction/bend at Larkhill Drive and Northland Crescent (check out the map below), and then home base will be the same clearing in McCartney Creek as last weekend's event, accessible via the trail from the junction at Larkhill Drive and Northland Crescent.

Meet at 10am for the morning's training. There will be a break for lunch followed by an afternoon training session. (We anticipate being done ~4 pm).

What should I bring?

Wear something comfortable that you don't mind getting a little dirty! A compass is optional (we will have a few extra ones for borrowing). For added safety, a whistle is mandatory for all GVOC events. Read more in the WJR Introduction to Orienteering.

  1. Layered clothing, as the day will be a combo of standing around talking and going out in the forest.
  2. A compass if you've got one.
  3. A whistle (these are mandatory for all GVOC events)
  4. A bagged lunch and snacks. We'll break for lunch but there might not be enough time to go out and buy food;
  5. Leg cover-we'll be running and walking through the bush.
  6. Dry socks, shoes and clothes to change into at the end of the day.
  7. Cash for the training session cost and for your GVOC membership fee if you're not a member yet this year.

The training will cost $15 for GVOC members.
If you're new to Orienteering, an annual GVOC membership is $10 for an adult, $5 for a junior or $20 for a family. (Being a member means you can attend the our weekly Wednesday events for free). If you are a new member or haven't signed up for GVOC yet in 2017, please print off and fill out your waiver ahead of time.



Photos are from Flickr. To add your photos to this section, tag your Flickr photos with: whyjustrun2843 (all one word)