Courses Info

This page is under development.

What is a course?

A course is a series of control points which you have to find in sequence.  A control point consists of a metal post in the ground with a distinctive orange and white flag attached.  On your map you will see red circles marked to show the location of each control point on your course.  Our club courses are laid out in a loop so you end up back where you started, which makes it convenient for the organisers and the contestants. 

Controls are never 'hidden'.  They are carefully placed so as to be found by good map reading and accurate navigation skills.

Different grades of courses.

At all orienteering events a range of courses is provided to ensure everyone can choose a course which suits their ability.  We designate our courses by colour according to the challenges they offer.  Following is a description of each course grade.  The name in brackets is the older, discontinued name.

Very Easy  (Blue)

Distance:  Approximately 1.5 to 2.0kms

Description:  Designed for complete beginners at orienteering and for children in the 7 - 10yrs range who are ready to do a course on their own.  Controls are positioned to be easily visible.  All controls are placed along tracks or possibly a fence or creek provided there is clear visibility and easy walking.  The main aim of the Blue course is to introduce the orienteer to reading the map and relating it to what they see around them.  There is no need for a compass, navigating the course is very simple.

Easy  (Green)

Distance:  Approx, 2.0 to 3.0kms

Description:  The next step up from Blue course, the Green course is a little longer and the controls are placed a short distance from the track.  The controls are still easily visible on approach and are at readily identifiable locations, eg a fence corner or distinctive boulder.  The orienteer is presented with some opportunities to 'cut corners' by going cross country rather than following the tracks.  This builds up the map reading skills.  Navigation is still simple and a compass is not necessary.

Moderate  (Orange)

Distance:  Approx, 3.0 to 4.0kms

Description:  Now the courses are taking the orienteer across country, away from tracks.and it is time to add compass skills to map reading skills in order to hold a course across open ground or forest areas.  Controls are placed near 'attack points', ie an identifiable feature such as a track junction or large boulder, to help the orienteer home in on the target control.  The orienteer begins to recognise a 'catching feature', such as a fence or track, to realise they have overshot the target control.  Controls may be placed on the far side of a rock or in a depression so as not to be visible until the orienteer finds the feature associated the the control location.

Hard - Short  (Short Red)

Distance:  Approx, 3.5 to 4.0kms

Description:  With Red courses the orienteer is presented with more controls to find over a longer distance.  Some legs (distance between two controls) will be much longer than in Orange courses, maybe 600m or more, to challenge the navigation skills of the orienteer.  Making good route choices becomes important - do you go over the hill or around it,  do you follow a water course bordered with thickets of shrubs or stay on higher ground.  Finding control locations now requires higher map reading skills.

Hard - Long  (Long Red)

Distance:  Approx, 4.5 to 6.0kms

Description:  Similar to the Short Red but with yet more controls over a greater course length, and with some legs stretching over 500m.

Orienteering Maps Legend.