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Past results: 2017

Orienteering in
the Hutt Valley

Orienteering in
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More about Exp-O

Experimental Orienteering Formats.

OHV has played a big part in the development of new orienteering formulas. A common thread has been easy-to-run events on close-to-home areas. Making use of the resources we have. Fun without hard work!

We will wake up to new possibilities. Pie in the Sky examples could be:

  • Orienteering on flat playing fields using flat-on the ground "pay-wave" controls so that you don't "give away" the position to others close by.
  • Orienteering without punching. A GPS isn't much more expensive than a Sport Ident chip. You download your GPS file at the end and its checked for going close enough to the points to allow for GPS accuracy.
  • Multi-level orienteering, such as buildings and carparks. (We just have to solve some mapping issues first...)
  • Orienteering for the disabled. The version done overseas relies on lots of features beside a wheelchair-able path and we don't seem to have suitable terrain. But how about a disabled - able-bodied team, in communication by cellphone, and only the disabled person has the map?
  • Orienteering with the map on a mobile device. Able to zoom. Able to portray land shape visually. Why just paper?
On this page we list and define experimental orienteering events as we try them out, and refine them. We've only had a couple at this time - expect this page to change too, as we document more ideas.

Sprint Adventure Races Winter 2018

An adventure race is an endurance challenge for teams, usually involving rugged country, travel by various modes, navigation, and organisers are always throwing in new mystery challenges. Well-known adventure races are "Get2Go" for junior high school, Hilary Challenge for senior high school, and for mature athletes The Big Bang, Spring Challenge, Godzone. Kiwis pretty much have a monopoly on the World AR Championship!!

Well apart from lasting up to a week (!) they are essentially team orienteering challenges, and there's no reason why you can't practice over a shorter course. Teams have to sort out their roles and teamwork too.

The Hutt river corridor is ideal for mini adventure racing, with easy mountain biking on the banks and some navigation practice in the willows and some urban jungles (ie schools). In the summer we can throw in some water skills too. But over winter 2018 we'll use some stretches of riverbank, gradually moving up the river where we've found some hidden gems. These will take about 2 hours.

The first one was on 17 June. See results which includes learning points leg by leg.

Multiple Short 4 Feb 18

This was an extension of the multiple urban sprint to the forest - Catchpool Valley in Remutaka Forest Park. Three little areas mapped in greater detail. But being forest, with red level navigation, speeds were lower so we called this "short" instead of sprint. Some people ran between the areas, others did a "pick and choose".

We'll write about this when the dust settles. Check out the results. The maps are still on the web, look in the calendar listing (search "past events") or in the OHV Map Download section. The key word to look for is "Catchpool".

Multiple Sprint 21 May 17

When the middle distance was introduced to NZ, we always ran two in one day. (Something about dollars per km, heh heh!) Why don't we run double sprints? Multiple sprints?

Yes we've had Sprint The Bay and its successors, that's more like a multi-day orienteering carnival which is not new. This all-at-once version goes like this:

  • Three sprints, in separate locations. A bit shorter than the usual, this lets us use smallish locations, or pick the best bits of an area. The prototype is Here's an overview map that lets you navigate between.
  • One course at each venue, of about 2km, around 15 controls. If this is too much for you, or you can't fit it into the day, just cherry-pick the ones that suit:-)
  • Between the three areas you can (X) run (Y) bike or (Z) drive your car. The distance between the areas is about 4km. You have 1hr from your finish time of each one to start the next one, unless you get there before the next one opens.
  • There's a time schedule. This is going to need some refinement:-))
    • Starts at Percy Cameron 0930 to 1000, finish SI station removed at 1030
    • Melling Bridge 1045 to 1115, finish SI station removed at 1215
    • Marine Parade 1200 to 1230. Course closes 1pm. Then off to one of the 40 cafes in Jackson St!
  • Download your own maps from the internet, the links will be on the ONZ calendar listing by the Friday prior (and are above). There will be a 1:25,000 map to let you get from sprint to sprint. Don't look at the sprint ones except to check that the printing is OK. Bring your own minigrip bag.
  • To make timing possible I think we'll use an SI station at each start and finish, and the splits printer will travel from event to event. When you've run your last race, print your splits twice and give one to the organiser. Mark it with your travel category X, Y or Z, and we should be able to work out your total sprint time. "Punching" at all the in-between controls will be by touching the stake (honesty). SI boxes and control codes won't be used.
  • To fully test the concept we may publish results, along with comments about what worked well and what didn't.
  • But there will be no direction signs, parking marshalls, toilets, tents, big start clocks, finish chutes, computer screens, race commentary, food stalls, coffee carts, or medals:-))
So I would expect a very few super-fit orienteers to treat category X as a 14k training run with a few breaks and some intervals thrown in. A few more to be attracted by the category Y combination of biking and running. And the majority of Z's who can just treat it as more orienteering than you usually get at a sprint. No entry fee. Pay it forward.

PS The maps will be footy ones, but apart from that, MTBOers could do these sprints by bike if they wanted, the areas are mostly ridable. Sprint MTBO is much harder than it looks, and test-riding suggests times will be about the same! To deal with a few controls in the willows, we'll use "Ak Attack rules" - i.e. you can leave your bike.


We are expecting a handful or orienteers (normal numbers would overwhelm us) and don't know if it will work even then. Feedback is welcome. There are lots of variables to tune - number/length of each sprint, how far apart can they be, etc. Please let us know.

Other bright ideas may appear here under the Exp-O label in due course.

This page written by and updated on 4 Feb 18.