oldglutton6 has written 221 posts for grampoc

DNC Glen Dye Part 1 25/11/15 Results

Hot off the press – results (revised 26/11/15) and splits. Routegadget now loaded too.

Interesting to see how you all coped with Pete’s long legs across those large areas of nothingness in a variety of different ways. Mine was to chicken out completely and refuse to run at all as my bearings are rubbish at the best of times, so you all have the moral high ground tonight. Bad luck to Rob for losing his magnifiers, I’ll ask Pete to look out for them when he’s collecting controls tomorrow.

Best of all was the reappearance of the Chillimobile! Hooray!

AUOC training event 29/11/15 Cambus O’May

Orienteering intervals and taking the control at high speed. This training planned and organised by AUOC aims to focus on maintaining fast orienteering speed while going through short control distances. Knowing where you are headed next is key!

The event will take place the upcoming sunday, 29th November from 12:00-13:00 at Cambus O’May (Maroc area!). Entry is £1 per map and maps will be given at the car park with some further information about the course.

The course is 3.7km long and technical difficulty is roughly green. If you are planning to do it as intervals, there are going to be 3 intervals in total – a perfect maximal exercise! But of course you can do the whole course as a normal speed orienteering training and enjoy the beautiful forest of Cambus O’May.

Once again, please use this contact form if you would like a map, so i know how many to print!

Hope to see many of you on Sunday!  Janne

NB: Juniors who want to be considered for the JIRCs in 2016 should not run as it will make them non-comp for JIRCs

Tip: To make the most of your trip up Deeside, take your smart phone and check out Maroc’s MOBO competition. Details here. And I’d recommend Finzean Farm teashop for a nice warming chocolate after you’ve done all that.


Final rankings for (JD)2C 2015

Final rankings  for John Duncan Junior Deeside Cup 2015

Congratulations to everyone who took part in so many races this year and in particular to the following:
Morvern Farquharson 1st W10
Kirsty Farquharson 3rd W10
Josie Gomersall 2nd W14
Ailsa Anderson 3rd W14
Naomi Lang 3rd W16
Lachlan Kirk 3rd M16

Pete’s turn on the podium @ Trofeo Sevilla O-Meeting

Having “done” Venice, Barcelona and Rome in previous years, we looked at either Antwerp or Sevilla for our autumn City O Break this year and the lure of tapas, beautiful medieval streets and the chance to practice our Spanish again swung it. (Sorry, Antwerp!)

3 very different O races to help justify all that tapas – a Middle distance in spaghetti western territory on Saturday morning, a Night Sprint round a small but complicated city park on Saturday evening including a string of tricky controls in the multi-levelled buildings of the Plaza de Espana before dodging the horse-drawn carriages to reach the finish, and then the grand finale of an Urban around those beautiful medieval streets on Sunday morning where an early start was a distinct advantage before the pavement cafes started sprouting up and the “Pullmans” of touristas started clogging the pavements.

The 1st and 3rd race times were combined to give the placings for the overall Trofeo Sevilla O-Meeting and Pete gained his place on the podium as 3rd M50. As well as the certificate – a great cartoonish mix of flamenco dancer and O map by a local artist – he won 500ml of olive oil but sadly had to leave it behind as we only had hand luggage.

DNC Crathes 11/11/15 Results

As Denise said last night: “Typical Crathes! Just when you think you know it…..”

Updated Results and Splits

Routegadget2 has been loaded up … please enter your routes here.

Morven Farquharson won the Northern Lights W10 Trophy

A belated congratulations (she only found out herself last weekend!) to GJO Morven Farquharson on winning the Northern Lights W10 Trophy for her run at Loch Vaa, back in early September, where she was the fastest W10 on the Yellow course in a time of 23:15.

OMM 2015

Congratulations to David and Lachlan Kirk on their excellent 10th place on the C Course in this year’s OMM.
Quite a debut for an M16 (although we already knew that Lachlan can run the legs off anything!)

And thanks for the tip off and congratulations too to Mark Stockton and Urban Sprint newcomer, Chris Cowley, on their 11th place on the A.

Deeside Night Cup 2015/16

To try and make best use of the darker nights, the DNC will start and finish a bit earlier than in previous years and also run closer to Xmas/New Year break to squeeze in a couple more. Helen Rowlands is the DNC Coordinator for GRAMP. We have planners for all the GRAMP events but if you think you can lend a hand at registration or by collecting controls she’d still like to hear from you.  Contact her using this contact form.

Two courses 3km and 5km at TD5/Green standard as far as possible. No concessions to the dark. There may also be an additional Orange in a couple of our less technical/scary areas for really junior Juniors and beginners to be able to have a go too. Check the details on the DNC blog.

You can team up with others to assist you on the night to spread the load a bit if you want and I know there are one or two of you out there who can’t commit to planning due to work hours but could offer to collect controls after. Every little helps.

28/10/2015 Hazlehead intro event
04/11/2015 MAROC Potarch
11/11/2015 Crathes 
18/11/2015 MAROC Sluie
25/11/2015 Glen Dye
03/12/2016 MAROC Shooting Greens
09/12/2015 TBC 
16/12/2015 MAROC Balnagowan
23/12/2015 Balmedie
30/12/2015 MAROC Glen Tanar
06/01/2016 Tyrebagger
13/01/2016 MAROC Torphantrick (new name for Inchmarnoch)
20/01/2016 Forvie
27/01/2016 MAROC Coull
03/02/2016 Scolty
10/02/2016 MAROC Dinnet North

As this is a shared series, we operate a separate blog with full list of dates, venues, travel maps, final results and chat – DNC Blog.  Once it kicks off in earnest check there rather than here for up to date details like snow reports.

There are lavish prizes for the best M/W Junior and Senior in each Cup and a host of frivolous prizes for things like the Toughest of the Tough for the most gruelling courses and Best/Worst Mistake. Seriously though, this is one of the most competitive leagues around and worth turning out for if only for the challenge of finding your way around areas you thought you knew pretty well until someone turned the lights out!

Jon Duncan Junior Deeside Cup 2015 – scores after Wood of Easter Clune

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALatest rankings after 9 events

Sorry – no time for the in depth analyses as posting cheekily from work.

Don’t forget the last (JD)2C chance to earn a few more points will be Gramp’s own event at Raemoir Sunday 15th Nov.


Hero of the hour!

He won’t thank me for telling you this (he’s very quiet and self-effacing) but we have a hero in our midst. He’s been regularly volunteering to get controls in after events for years and years but looks like he’s now started collecting competitors instead…..!

“Can you relay a thank you to Bob Daly who came upon me injured in the forest today and reported this to the controller? He then came back up to help carry me to a waiting car. I have a spiral fracture of the fibula in my right leg and a stitched right knee – the result of 2 separate mishaps! Please pass on my heartfelt thanks – I was so glad to see him in the forest! Regards Marjory Craig”

VHIs 2015 – Scotland gain 2nd place

Our very own Rob Hickling helped Scotland to second place down in Wales over the weekend.
I haven’t had a chance to read the results in detail but did spot him doing very well in the individual M60 competition on Saturday chasing down fellow Scot and big rival Eddie Harwood to score 7 and 8 points respectively (top of the class basically!)

Full results can be found on the Mid Wales Orienteers website.

Maybe Rob will post a comment to this telling us all about how they mustered enough energy to run after an epic journey to reach the far side of Mid Wales?


North Clubs Junior Competition 2015

GJOstandrews150Well done to GJOs Dara Tivendale, Morven Farquharson, Isobel Anderson, Kirsty Farquharson, Duncan Will, Douglas Walmsley, Mairi Walmsley and Alex Lang for holding it together at Wood of Easter Clune over the weekend and not being phased by stiff competition from Maroc and MOR.

They ran in courses varying from White to Light Green and for many this would have been their first taste of  major competion. 264 points total gave them 3rd place overall and they also boosted their (JD)2C scores at the same time. An excellent day all round!

Aberdeen Uni Urban Sprint 30/9/15

Wow! That was a blast! Never-ending route choices and plenty of twists and turns not to mention furkling in bushes and round the back of buildings in the dark towards the end. A big thank you to our guest planner, Janne, for cramming so much fun onto a piece of A4 paper.

Funny how many of us switched off mentally just after the map change and went charging past a control which was more or less on a straight line between two others. We were so clued in to left, right, double back, left again by that stage that a straight line must have seemed just too easy to our fuddled brains so we dismissed it.

Results   Splits   Overall points (best 3 of 5 results)    Overall points by category

Overall joint winners of the Series and MOpen are Janne Heikkinen AUOC and Mark Stockton GRAMP with the maximum possible 150 points apiece. Mark managed to pull a win out of the hat at the last race to equal Janne’s tally, narrowly squeaking in with 10 seconds to spare over a certain Angel (I’m-not-feeling-too-good-I-probably-won’t-run-tonight) Iliev AUOC.

U16:     Alex Lang GRAMP and Olivia Coman GRAMP
J:          Jake Chapman MAROC  (and no WJ runners)
Open:  Janne Heikkinen AUOC/Mark Stockton GRAMP and Mikaela Kolistanikova AUOC
V:         David Kirk GRAMP and Rachel Scott GRAMP
SV:       Rob Hickiling GRAMP and Fiona/June/Fiona IND
Best Newcomers to orienteering: Kirsty Robson and Chris Cowley

If you didn’t pick up your prize last night, get in touch and we’ll arrange something – email Rachel on webmaster@grampoc.com.

Hope you enjoyed it all as much as I have and see you next Autumn?

SOL 2015

Congratulations to the following GRAMPS on their SOL successes in 2015:

Rob Hickling 1st M60 (have a good one at the VHIs this weekend!)
George Esson 3rd M65S
Neil McLean 1st M70
Morven Farquharson 2nd W10
Kirsty Farquharson 3rd W10
Carolyn McLeod 1st W40L
Anne Hoy 3rd W55S
Anne Hickling 1st W60S

If you only watch one thing this weekend, watch this….

…Adventure Show, BBC2, Sunday 19:00
Features the blood, sweat and tears of WOC2015. I know we all know the results already but you can still cheer on our local elites, Spongey and Jess.

Urban Sprint Hillhead Campus 23/9/15 Results

Nice to see lots of new faces from AUOC. Bit of an in-at-the-deep end experience for some with 3km packed into the Hillhead area by using a double-sided map (although some old hands didn’t listen to that bit of the instructions…!) but some very good results none the less. That’s what young legs do for you *sigh!*

Results and Splits
Overall points – remember it’s your best 3 of 5 that count
Overall points by category – so you can see what you need to do next week to clinch victory

MV is the closest battle to watch – will Bob run too fast and make too many mistakes next week and let David Kirk through to claim one of those lavish prizes? And will Mark manage an outright win to equal Janne at the top of the MOpen leader board? (Janne has 50 points safely in the bag already by planning next week.)

I need to tidy up a few details like clubs and age classes too so if you’ve spotted a mistake then let me know now webmaster@grampoc.com.



Urban Sprint Balgownie Wed 16/9/15

Results  Splits   Ranking points

“That was quite good considering I don’t like pavements!”
Another convert to urban/sprint orienteering?  Hope so.

Thanks to Rachel Salway and her team for rescuing no 12 from a bin later on during the race.

Better turn out than last year but still the least popular venue of the series and it looks like next year we’ll be forced to think about using somewhere else maybe due to the AWPR steaming through. Back to Balgownie proper maybe? Or Scotstown School map was mentioned.




Scolty Level C 13/9/15 – Results

A beautiful autumn morning for our event!

Click on the links to Final Results and Splits.
BOF ranking points (none for Brown as not enough Senior finishers)

Analyse your splits at Winsplits.
Trace your routes on the map at Routegadget.

Thanks very much to the officials:

Organiser:  Helen Rowlands
Planner:  Jonathan Smith
Controller:  Sarah Dunn (MAROC)

and to all our helpers.

Autumn Urban Sprint Series 2015

Wed 2th Sept     Duthie Park and Ferryhill   :-  Results and split times
Wed 9th Sept     Westburn and Victoria Parks :- Results and split times
Wed 16th Sept   Balgownie    Results and Splits
Wed 23rd Sept  Seaton Park and Hillhead      Results and Splits
Wed 30th Sept  Aberdeen Uni Kings Campus  Results   Splits

Overall points (best 3 of 5 results) Overall points by category

Overall joint winners of the Series and MOpen are Janne Heikkinen AUOC and Mark Stockton GRAMP with the maximum possible 150 points apiece. Mark managed to pull a win out of the hat at the last race to equal Janne’s tally, narrowly squeaking in with 10 seconds to spare over a certain Angel (I’m-not-feeling-too-good-I-probably-won’t-run-tonight) Iliev AUOC.

U16:     Alex Lang GRAMP and Olivia Coman GRAMP
J:          Jake Chapman MAROC (and no WJ runners)
Open:  Janne Heikkinen AUOC/Mark Stockton GRAMP and Mikaela Kolistanikova AUOC
V:         David Kirk GRAMP and Rachel Scott GRAMP
SV:       Rob Hickiling GRAMP and Fiona/June/Fiona IND
Best Newcomers to orienteering: Kirsty Robson and Chris Cowley

If you didn’t pick up your prize last night, get in touch and we’ll arrange something – email Rachel on webmaster@grampoc.com.

Urban Sprints Series points

We’ll be awarding points again this year – winner gets 50, 2nd gets 47, 3rd gets 44, 4th gets 41 and then decreasing one point for each place thereafter.
1 point even if you mis-punch or don’t complete the course.
Don’t ask why but that’s the way it was decided to do it for the DNC so I’ve just followed suite!

Your best 3 results out of 5 count towards your overall total and could win you a lavish prize in one of these categories (loosely based on the SOUL system):

JU16 – Junior shadowed
J Junior
Open – any age class*
V Veteran 40+
SV Super Veteran 55+
UV Ultra Veteran 65+

*Let me know if you want to compete in the Open category otherwise I’ll put you in the category for your age class

Scores so far attached and I’ll try to update asap after each race. Rachel

2015 Urban Sprints Points 1-5.pdf

Summer Series 2015 Awards

Congratulations to everyone who achieved one of the summer series awards:

Ailsa Anderson, Isobel Anderson, Paul Caffyn, Olivia Coman, Lachlan Kirk, Patrick Lang, Joe Wright, Keith Yardley
Eilidh Campbell, Alex Lang, Duncan Will
Alistair Chapman, Jake Chapman, Heather Darby, Gideon Emerson, Amber Graham, Luke Graham, Naomi Lang, Abigail Mason, John Silver, Hannah Will

Anyone who didn’t collect their award at Templars should contact Anne to arrange to get it.

Keep on orienteering!

Tim Gomersall 6th in inaugural Glen Coe Skyline Race

Great result for Tim yesterday in a truly mind boggling race around the peaks on either side of Glen Coe. Part hill running, part scrambling, part Spider Manning his way round 30 odd km of brutal terrain in 7:55:09 and only 11 minutes behind the Skyrunning World Champion, Emelie Forsberg. (Don’t think he’ll mind being chicked in this case!)

Take a look the website http://www.glencoeskyline.com for a squiz at the race route and possibly photos soon but to give you a brief flavour: “The race route traverses high and remote mountainous terrain. Once committed to many sections of the race route it is impossible to retreat.” (Actually that last bit could equally apply to some of Day 5 of Highland 2015?) Followed by: “Our proposed route features long and sustained sections of scrambling terrain, which is roughly equivalent to moderate standard rock climbing. Be under no illusions that a slip or trip on these serious sections of the route could result in death.”

Autumn Urban Series flyers

2015 autumn A5 alternative 3Help us spread the word!

Get your flyers from Sam Gomersall at Templars Park and distribute them far and wide at work, college, sports centres, libraries….

Maybe stick a few on lamp posts in the areas we’re using or nearby.




Summer Series awards

With all the excitement of the World Champs, I haven’t forgotten our own gold, silver and bronze awards. Since one of this year’s summer events was cancelled (Tollo Hill), I’ve decided to reduce the qualification for the gold award to just 9 events. There are quite a few of you who could get to that if you come along to the last two!

Current standings are:

Paul Caffyn

Ailsa Anderson, Isobel Anderson, Olivia Coman, Lachlan Kirk, Patrick Lang, Duncan Will, Joe Wright, Keith Yardley

Alistair Chapman, Luke Graham, Alex Lang, Abigail Mason, John Silver, Hannah Will


Countesswells SS Results

Bit of a thin turn out again for Countesswells – folk still on hols? not recovered yet from 6 Days?

We did host a training session for the Junior regional Orienteering Squad though who traveled over from Templars Park, where they are having a training camp, to go round the Long Tech with a training twist. We’ve posted their times but not in with the other Long Techs as it’s probably not a valid comparison.


Only two more events left in the Summer Series – Scolty next week followed by templars Park plus BBQ the week after – everyone welcome, bring your own food and drink and we’ll provide the rest.

S6D Highland 2015

hoopsAli Robertson leaping over one of Strathfarrar’s finest boggy bits.
(Photo by ActivNorth)

This may look impressive but is as nothing compared to the hoops Richard Oxlade and Anne Hickling have been jumping through on our behalf over the last two years in their respective roles as Highland 2015 Co-ordinator and Scottish Orienteering 6-Day Event Co. Ltd Chairman. A huge thank you to both of them for delivering another great 6 Days despite the added complications of dovetailing with WOC 2015.
Richard even found time to run 4 days of the 6 coming 49th in M55S which is even more impressive given what must have been churning through his mind rather than concentrating on the map.

Several other Gramps were drafted in to help on the Highland 2015 Central Organising Committee too: Kevin Reynard – Treasurer (not to mention his band of eager helpers back at his Counting House), Jayne MacGregor and Anne Hoy – Traders (free coffee and burgers as perks of that job), Anne Hickling again – Nairn Open Sprint Organiser and Rest Day Co-ordinator, Helen Rowlands – Website Updater and Routegadget Putter-upperer.

We also provided Planners for Day 4 in the shape of Ian Searle and Pete Lawrence (to fill gaps left by more experienced members of other clubs drafted in to plan WOC courses), David Esson was the Planner/Organiser for the MTBO on the rest day, Jonathan Smith for the Trail Run and of course all of us stepped up to the mark to deliver Day 1 in true well-organised Gramp style with help from orienteers from WCH, WIM, Goldseekers, SLOW and INVOC. Big thanks go to Adrian Will and Helen Anderson for being our Day Organisers, Ali Robertson as joint Planner with Fraser Purves of FVO and Neil McLean as Controller along with Roger Coombs MAROC.

Somewhere in amongst all that activity, about 70 Gramps, from M/W10 and less to W75, found time to run or hobble round most days and enjoy the best terrain that Scotland has to offer, not to mention some serious relaxation with great banter and camaraderie in the club tent and at the BBQ. We had one podium finisher in the overall results: congratulations to Kate Robertson on her 3rd place W35S.

(It seems traditional to provide some quirky stats in this kind of round up so I offer you this little curiosity to finish: the Red/Blue start list had  ~3250 names on it, took up ~50 pages of A4 and weighed 280g.)


GRAMP Permanent Orienteering Courses (POCs) to get a revamp

Our POCs have been in limbo for some time now and we’re planning a revamp reusing some of the old favorites where still suitable and introducing some new areas – woods, park, urban – anything considered.

Stuart Anderson has agreed to take on the co-ordination of this, starting with Duthie Park now that the refurb is finished, the map brought up to date and we have some eager customers wanting to use it soon.

Do you live near a suitable POC location? Could you adopt a POC and help Stuart out? It wouldn’t take much of your time and would be a big help to the club getting the GRAMP brand name back into the public eye again. Email him, use this contact form or catch him at an event.

Hazlehead SS Results 10/6/15

The weather must have brought out the crowds as John was out of all maps by the end of the evening with quite a few new people turning up and giving it a go. Nobody managed to fall in the ditch on the long and short tech but many got caught out by the fence around the large grass area on the way to the four controls to the South of the main park. And in spite of one control going missing for a while it was found so all kit handed to the Andersons for next week.

Apologies to those who tried to go to the car park on the old road out to Countesswells Road. I have now moved the marker on the map ready for next year. Note to future SS planners – please follow the link from the SS series for your event and shout me now if it shows the wrong place by emailing webmaster@grampoc.com.


Next event is at Balmedie 17/6/15 followed by a BBQ and the GAC Big Reveal/Prize Giving. Everyone welcome, we’ll provide fuel, you just need to bring food and drink and some money for *****CAKE*****  Thought that might grab your attention…..

Needing a post BBQ treat? Naomi will be raising money for her World Challenge trip to Vietnam and Cambodia in summer 2016 by selling cakes and fresh lemonade at Balmedie on Wednesday.  Make sure you run hard in those dunes and are suitably hungry and thirsty!



Back O’Bennachie 7th June 15 Results

BoB 4Bob 2BoB 3BoB 1


Here are the results and splits for today’s race at Back O’ Bennachie:

Results.   Splits.

Winsplits   Routegadget

Splitsbrowser will be loaded up shortly.

Thanks very much to all the helpers, and well done to those who conquered the hill.

New area, new map – pics attached for a flavour come courtesy of planner, David Esson, the cheerful looking chap on the right enjoying his control site checking. (It’s tough but someone has to do it.)

Courses on offer:
White 1.9k 90m
Yellow 2.5k 90m
Orange 2.8k 90m
Lt Green 2.7k 115m
Green 3.4k 125m
Blue 4.6k 240m
Brown 6.3k 290m

Planner: David Esson
Organiser: Ian Hamilton (hero of the hour – thanks for stepping in)
Controller: George Esson


Crathes SS 3/6/15 Results

Here are the results for Wednesday’s event at Crathes. Thanks to Team Anderson for braving the midges long enough to count us all out and count us all in.
Nettles or midges? Which is worse?!

Crathes Results 150603.pdf

Dunnottar Woods Summer Series 27/5/15 Results

Knees and shins stopped tingling yet from the stingers? I’m told nettles are good for osteo arthritis but don’t think it works in a preventative way unfortunately so unless you’re unlucky enough to already be suffering then last night’s exposure won’t have counted for anything – apart from hard-earned GAC points of course.


The Long Tech course was replaced by an ‘Aberdonian Linear’ which entailed as many loops of a 2.4km course as possible in 45 mins but forfeit all points if over the time limit.

****UPDATE**** Those stingers are famous BTW – used by Nick Nairn on Landward this week to create a Scottish pesto along with the ramsons (wild garlic). Some lovely shots of Dunnottar Woods in the sunshine.


Scottish Championships 2015

A small but determined contingent of Gramps travelled across to EckoLand for the Scottish Championships 23rd/24th May and gained several podium finishes between them:

17+ Points Relay Class: Gramp One aka Carolyn and Iain McLeod and Bob Daly (Woohoo!)
W21S Individual: Heather Hale (Woohoo too!)

W50L Carolyn McLeod
W55S Anne Hoy
M50S Richard Oxlade

W55S Sonia Armitage
W60S Anne Hickling
M60L Rob Hickling


New to Orienteering?

Click here for a video or read on….

So you want to know what this orienteering thing is all about?

Well….. the basic idea is to navigate your way around a course, usually in the woods, using a specially drawn map which shows features such as streams, fences, boulders and crags. You have to start at the Start (!), finish at the Finish (!!) and visit a series of control points along the way, but it’s entirely up to you how you get from point to point and whether you run hell for leather or bimble round with the kids and dog and have a picnic en route. If you like treasure hunts, the outdoors, running or any combination of these then give it a go.

Where do events take place and how to find them?

Our fixtures list shows what’s happening where and when and gives you a grid reference and a link to Google maps online maps so you can find us. When you get close to the event carpark you’ll probably see red and white orienteering signs to show you the way. The summer events are particularly ideal for beginners being either in or close to Aberdeen and hopefully warm enough that it doesn’t matter if you take a while to get into the swing of it.

What to bring?

Trainers or lightweight boots and tracksuit bottoms or similar that you don’t mind getting a bit mucky; a large clear plastic bag to put your map in; a compass if you have one for orientating the map; a drink/snack for afterwards; a few £s to pay for your map.

What to expect at your first event….

Having parked, look out for a queue of people by a car or tent waiting to register. You’ll be asked for your name (so we can keep track of who’s out there and the time taken for keen competitors) and which course you want to try. Don’t be afraid to ask advice about which course is the best for you. To begin with try the yellow/orange courses as they are based on tracks or other linear features such as walls. Eventually you’ll work up to a light green and beyond where things start to get a bit more technical. You’ll be issued with a map, a set of control descriptions and usually an electronic timing device called an emit brikke (the system comes from Scandinavia.)

The map…. will look a little strange at first with colours and symbols that might as well be hieroglyphics, but you should be able to recognise tracks, paths, streams and contours. There should be a legend printed down the side to explain the other features but for beginners courses you’ll be using linear features so make sure you know what a track, path, stream, fence and a wall look like and forget about the rest for the time being. The other thing you should note about your map is the scale – we use 1:10,000 or 1:15,000 scale maps to get the necessary detail in. That means that 1cm on the map represents 100m or 150m on the ground respectively. Imagine what the 100m dash looked like on the school playing field and that should help you judge the distance you need to go between controls.

The control descriptions….  will show a list of controls and you must visit them in that order. Control sites are marked by special orange and white “kites” to make them easier to spot at a distance. Each control on the list will have a number or letter code next to it. When you actually reach that control, it will have a code physically attached to it so you know you’ve got the right one. The list also gives a brief description of the feature that you’re looking for, e.g. path/stream junction, fence bend, to help you home in on it once you’re in the right area on the map. The descriptions are in the form of a pictorial code – just ask someone for a translation or ask for one of our cards explaining the different symbols.

The brikke….  should be attached to your finger using the strap and fits snuggly in the palm of your hand, orange side facing outwards. Every time you get to a control, including the Start and Finish, place the brikke onto the base plate, orange to orange, and make sure that the red LED on the control flashes. At the Start, as soon as you lift your brikke from the control, any previous timing data is wiped and the timing starts for your run. (So don’t punch the Start again by mistake instead of the Finish if you’re bothered about timing!)  Again, don’t be afraid to ask for help on the use of these – there is always someone hanging around to help beginners.

Starts…. generally you can start whenever you like after you’ve got your brikke and map but there will be a last start cutoff time and also a time when all courses close, as obviously the people organising would like to get home sometime the same day! If you want you can leave your car keys at registration before setting off.

Finish…. once you’ve punched the Finish control, go to the download point (often the same place as registration) and hand in your brikke. You will be given your time on a slip of paper which also shows how long it took you between each control. IMPORTANT – Even if you don’t finish your course, you must still go to download to hand in your brikke – this is the only method we have of knowing that you’re back safe and sound and we don’t need to call out International Rescue.

Here’s another article courtesy of the OS explaining the basics if all that above isn’t enough words – best way to explain is to come along to one of our events and we’ll show you.


What should I wear?
A pair of trainers or lightweight boots and jogging bottoms or similar will do fine to begin with. You might also want to bring a light cagoule if it looks like rain and something to change into afterwards as it can be a bit muddy at any time of year.

Do I need to know how to use a map and compass?
A rough idea of what North is all about should be more than enough. Although we use compasses, we don’t take bearings the same way as hillwalkers do – rather we use the compass to make sure that the map is orientated correctly relative to North as there are special lines on an orienteering map that represent magnetic North. Ask for a lesson on how to do this when you register or have a look at this
online guide to using a compass.

Who can take part?
Pretty well anybody can take part in normal orienteering events – there is usually a short course of 1km or so on main paths aimed at kids plus a series of courses getting progressively longer and more technical. We have a couple of ladies who manage to get round quite rough stuff with the aid of sticks and although not as fast as they used to be they still enjoy the navigational challenge. There is a special brand of orienteering originally created to allow the physically disabled to compete on an equal basis called
Trail-O, but these are specialised events that don’t take place that often.

Is it really competitive?
Yes and No! If you find that you and orienteering click, you can progress to the level where you compete nationally or even internationally. On the other hand, probably 50% of Gramp’s members are more than happy to take part for the simple pleasure of being outdoors and getting a bit of exercise both physically and mentally.

How much does it cost?
Local events typically cost £4 per adult per course, bigger events £12 upwards (unless you join a club in which case you get a discount.)
Entry fees are usually advertised in the event details. If you want to join Gramp then there is a small annual fee – see the joining post – or contact the membership secretary for details.

Is it always the same kind of courses described here?
Generally, yes, but there are other variations on the theme such as Night-O, relays or Score events where you have a time limit in which to find as many controls as you can in any order you like. There are long distance events in moorland/mountain terrain, 
mountain bike O, park races and street events . For the summer series, Gramp members get really creative and put on all kinds of inventive courses to try and give a simple area a bit more of a challenge for experienced orienteers.

Can I practise anywhere else apart from the organised events?
There are several
Permanent Orienteering Courses (POCs) in the Gramp area and also some up the Deeside valley which are looked after by another club, Maroc. And Bennachie FC visitor centre can supply you with maps for the semi-permanent courses always available there, details on the POCs page.

Where can I look up all these new terms and abbreviations I keep coming across?
Try the most excellent
Jargon Buster courtesy of SOA – sorry that’s jargonese for Scottish Orienteering Association – and Fixture List De-Bunker.

Tyrebagger Summer Series 20/5/15 Results

Round 2 of the GAC posed a bit more of a challenge with much rougher terrain and more intricate navigation required for some controls (“that tree!”) but, hey, that’s the whole point of the Challenge!

Well done to all who got round and thanks to the walking wounded who helped collect controls, Bob Daly and Matt Parkes. (Hope the leg holds good for the Scottish Champs, Bob, and good luck to all GRAMPS going across west for that.)


1 Red squirrel spotted while out hanging controls – keep your eyes peeled folks & report your sightings, red or grey, dead or alive, here. And nowhere near as cute but still wildlife I suppose, the midges were pretty active so future organisers might want to add some Smidge to the organiser’s box of useful things?

O map symbols and control descriptions explained

Prompted by a good bit of feedback from a beginner regarding the lack of a legend on the Tyrebagger map (sorry about that) here is a useful link to a page explaining map symbols and control descriptions side-by-side put together by Brsitol Orienteering Klub.

Map symbols and control descriptions explained

(NB these are for forest maps. There is a different set for urban maps which I’ll post in the autumn for our Urban Sprints Series.)

TIP There’s a lot to take in on that page so concentrate on the basics…

Map symbols – concentrate on the linear features first:
-paths, tracks
– streams, ditches
– fences and walls

Once you get more confident and start to go “off piste”:
– start to read the contours (ask at Registration for a quick lesson if you find this hard at first)
– use the vegetation information to avoid the thickest trees and bracken and boggiest marshy bits

Control descriptions – concentrate on the symbols described as being in Column D:
– paths, tracks
– streams, ditches
– fences, walls
And the symbols in Column F:
– crossing
– junction

Got those sussed? Good. Now add the symbols for the following to your control symbol vocabulary  as these are often used on easier courses where they pop up next to linear features:
– boulder
– gate
– pond
– depression (small hole in the ground)
– building
– bridge
– knoll (very small hill)

Worry about the rest later when you get onto the medium/harder courses – looks like loads when you look at that BOK page but you’ll only need about a quarter of what’s shown. And if you don’t recognise a control description just ask at Registration or go on a mystery tour and see what you find when you get there!


Forest Sprint 2015 – AUOC double

Congrats to Janne Heikkinen and Angel Iliev of AUOC for gaining the top two slots this year closely followed by Bob Daly GRAMP. Maroc’s Joe Wright and Abi Mason take the Junior honours.

Full results can be found on the Maroc website or here (pdf).

Tollohill Forest Sprint Fri 24-4-15 Results

Overall results after 3 events

Congratulations to Keith Yardley for taking on a Sprint as his first go at planning – plenty of controls and twists and turns saw us all stopping dead at one point or another asking “Which path am I on? Where was I going?”

Lost property – pair of trainers left in the back of Rachel’s car – email me on flump@care4free.net to arrange where and when to hand them back please.

Grampian Orienteers help CNR to victory in the ActivityMix CD Urban Navigation

Rachel Scott and Kate Robertson helped Team CNR to victory today in the ActivityMix Corporate Decathlon Urban Navigation event. Although as it all took place within a very small and well-known area of central Aberdeen there was very little navigation involved unless you count the navigation through Google and Yahoo pages to find the answers to some of the questions as it was part treasure hunt, part pub quiz on the run and a little bit of selfie-ing, sometimes with the help of bemused but willing passersby up for a bit of fun.

Interesting concept – each team was issued with an iPhone running an app that showed a map of central Aberdeen marked with ~40 locations where questions could be found or instructions for selfies taken doing certain things.
Questions were worth 10, 20 or 30 points with half points value awarded if you used the Hint button and penalties if you were late back. Basically a 2 hour Score but with many technological twists.

As you got close enough to a question location and entered the small GPS hotspot around it, the app would pick up on it and then allow you to access the question but only while close enough to that hotspot. Answers were entered and submitted electronically and you instantly got feedback whether you’d got it right or not. There were also a couple of mystery questions whose locations weren’t marked but which popped up on the screen as you happened to pass the GPS hotspot to trigger them.

Wonder what the app was? Could we use it, or something similar, to put on urban POCs?
Which reminds me – I saw an ad in CompassSport for The iOrienteering App. Anyone got an iPhone and some time to spare to try it out?

SOL? SOUL? What’s all that about?

For the benefit of new members who keep seeing our posts urging you to enter SOLs and SOULs but aren’t sure what we’re on about….

SOL = Scottish Orienteering League (sponsored by CompassPoint)
– larger events – 350-400 runners on average
– a full range of courses to choose from including Black and Short Green/Blue/Brown
– better quality mapping and organisation with loos and often traders/food stalls
– online entry system and very little Entry On The Day
– your result earns you SOL ranking points and the chance to win trophies by age class

SOUL = Scottish Orienteering Urban League (sponsored by bto solicitors)
– all as above but in an urban environment including parks, streets, estates, alleyways, waste ground
– usually 5 or 6 courses all TD3 or Orange standard where route choice is key to a successful run
– the chance to earn ranking points for the SOUL categories where age classes are grouped together

If you’ve not tried a big event yet why not give SOUL 3 at Aboyne and/or SOL 4 at Glen Dye a go the first w/e in May – right on our doorstep, friendly faces you know, the chance to munch on some excellent baking from ScotJOS and Banchory Schools Team – what’s stopping you?
Online entries open already on OEntries with closing date of 26th April for both events.

Forest Sprint Countesswells 10/4/15 Results

Thanks to Team Esson headed up by David for tonight’s dash round Countesswells. Good to see lots of new faces – hope you enjoyed your intro to the sport and we’ll see you at Tillifourie next Friday.

Roger Coombs of Maroc will be doing the Forest Sprint League points again this year. Your best 4 scores out of the 6 races will count towards your total. Bit early to call as yet but keep an eye on Alex Maclachlan who won last year and was the person doing a bit of informal coaching tonight.

FS Countesswells Results.pdf

FS Countesswells Splits.pdf

JK2015 – 2 GRAMPs on the podium

Congrats to Pete Lawrence and Anne Hickling for their 3rd places overall on M50S and W60S respectively after 2 days of tough and intricate orienteering in the Lake District.

Steep, rocky, muddy hillsides really sorted the sheep from the mountain goats. It was all too tempting to follow the muddy trods along the path of least resistance even though your brain was saying you needed to keep higher and really concentrate on ticking off the features.

Anne also found the energy and brain power to compete in the Temp O and Pre-O competitions narrowly missing a top 10 finish in the latter.

  Photo by Claro Orienteer (Flickr)

Jon Duncan Junior Deeside Cup 2015


Rules and events list below.  Any questions? Contact Trevor Ricketts of MAROC or Marianne Lang of GRAMP or ask at an event.

You’re automatically entered into the competition if you’re a GRAMP or MAROC Junior, all you need do now is make sure you get along to as many events as you can this year.  Good Luck!

In case you didn’t already know, the Jon Duncan Junior Deeside Cup is named after an honorary GRAMP and ex-British Team member, Jon Duncan, who is now enjoying semi-retirement from the international orienteering scene growing beetroot in Norway. (Honest!)


The (JD)2C competition will be run over 10 x Level C events with the best 6 (TBC) scores counting for each runner.

There will be 6 classes for girls and boys, using the ‘standard’ age classes, i.e. M/W8, M/W10, M/W12, M/W14, M/W16.

Within each event, the Gramp/Maroc Junior who is highest placed for each course scores the maximum course points:
White 200
Yellow 300
Orange 400
Light Green 500
Green 600
Blue 700
Brown 800

Points for subsequent runners are calculated using this formula:
score = [(winner’s time)/(runner’s time)]*(maximum course points)

Every effort will be made to provide a White course at each event. However, if this is not possible, the JDC organisers will review how many events will qualify for the M8 and W8 classes

If you are being shadowed or running in a pair, please declare this when you register. You will score half points for your run

The competition aims to find the best Gramp / Maroc junior in each age class. Juniors may choose the course appropriate to their ability.

Counting events
11th Jan   Glen O’Dee
26th Feb   Crathes
3rd May   Glen Dye
17th May  Bogendriep
7th June   Back O’Bennachie
17th May   Potarch
23rd Aug   Birsemore
13th Sep    Scolty
4th Oct      Easter Clune
14th Nov   Raemoir

Check the clubs’ websites closer to each event for details and entries links.



Grampian Adventure Challenge 2015

have you gotMaersk successfully defended their winners trophy in 2015.
Well done everyone for tackling some tough courses!

Final scores.

Points are awarded depending on finish position to the 1st three females and males in your team and the best 4 team results out of the 6 will count towards your team total. Trophies for first 3 teams and first 3 individuals from the series.

Email: GAC@grampoc.com



DNC Mini Night Cup 14/15 successes

(It’s not often I get to put my own name up in lights so I’m going to enjoy this while it lasts….!)

Congrats to Helen Rowlands and Rachel Scott for winning 1st and 2nd Female in this year’s Mini Deeside Night Cup (aka the Short course). Chocolatey prizes featured largely and also vouchers from Field & Trek in Aboyne so thanks to them for their support for the DNC this year.

Lots of other Gramp DNC regulars took part and good to see a couple of our Juniors, Lachlan Kirk and Paul Caffyn, taking on the challenge and no doubt you’ll see the results in their day time orienteering this year as it seems to be what really boosts the Maroc Juniors’ performance.

At the curry and prize giving, Jon M mentioned that maybe next season we might try putting on an Orange course for Juniors and beginners to try and boost the DNC numbers as they seem to have stayed around the 30+ runners/event mark for quite a while now. MOR have put on a few more lowkey night O events recently which have proved very popular with families and beginners so the precedent has been set.

What do you think – would you be tempted to come out and enjoy the fun if there was an Orange on offer?

Scolty DNC 25/2/15 Results

Here are the provisional results from tonight. Thanks to David for some very fast almost sprint-style courses in the northern part of the forest which tempted you to overshoot while enjoying the runnable terrain.

2015-2-25-ScoltyDNC Splits.pdf
2015-2-25-ScoltyDNCResults.pdf  Revised to void the legs on either side of No 4

Apologies from the planner for placing No 4 on the wrong boulder – although the control was visible from the right boulder if you did a lighthouse impression. He’s revised the results to void the legs either side of No 4 to compensate.

Pssst! Seen what’s been happening to Gramp Facebook recently?

Jen Hickling’s taken over our Facebook page and has been busy culling things from the blogosphere and FB-land that she thinks you might like to see. Amongst other things we have a brand new cover photo featuring a stunning photo of Alex Lang in full flight during the rather wet 2014 Jamie Stevenson competition. (He’s said he’s quite chuffed to be the new face of Gramp and will be willing to sign autographs in exchange for chocolate.)

Jen’s keen to get you all involved so even if you don’t want to post or comment yourself you can send her snippets – she’s particularly looking for photos from events – to jenhickling1″at”gmail.com.

Go on, pay a visit now https://www.facebook.com/grampoc.


Contact AUOC

Use the form below to contact AUOC about training events or anything else for that matter.

Forvie DNC 28/1/15 Results

The event details read: “some genuine TD5+ with absolutely no paths, very few natural line features and acres of dunes to perambulate through”.

I’ll admit to finding the prospect of all that a wee bit scary (being incapable of holding a bearing for more than 20m on a good day) but it was great fun trying to alternately de-clutter and find a relatively safe line through/round so much detail and then trying to tune back into the detail to get to the right depression amongst hundreds of contenders. Great night out, thanks Ian.

2015-1-28 ForvieDNC.pdf
ForvieDNC Splits.pdf

Balmedie DNC 14/1/15 Results

Turned into a real wild, wet and windy night although most of us managed to get round before it really set in. Commiserations to John for having to earn his 50 planner’s points the really hard way collecting in! Just when I thought I was getting to know Balmedie in the dark well enough to relax a bit, John caught me out with some tricky controls on knolls where if you turned your torch away at the wrong moment you ran straight past. Aagh! Must get the distance judgement thing sussed.

Ice rink in the car park added to the fun but what I really wish I’d seen was the chillimobile squeezing between the posts guarding the entrance to the car park. Are they still there I wonder?

20150114 Balmedie DNC Results.pdf
20150114 Balmedie DNC Splits.pdf


o topIs your old O top really getting beyond decency?
Fancy looking the professional at the 6 Days this year?
For a few pounds you can upgrade your O wardrobe and really feel part of the club.

Iain McLeod needs his garage back and would love to shift some of the Gramp Kit that has been sitting in boxes for a while now. He has a selection of tops – a mix of the Fugro sponsored Trimtex and the previous Noname ones with the castle-on-the-bum design – plus a handful of jackets and a single GJO Hoody.
Full details of sizes and prices here:  Gramp Kit Sale Jan 2015.pdf
If you’re interested, give Iain a call on 01224 867297.

Iain also has some vintage clothing that ought to be fetching a premium but instead he’s only asking you to make a donation.  Red and white T-shirts, retro tops and pride of place are some red lycras.


Then try a Permanent Orienteering Course in a local forest or park or try one of our Street O maps for a taste of urban O.


Scottish Orienteering Association

British Orienteering

British Orienteering

RSS SOA news

  • Compass Point Scottish O League 2016
    It’s still early for the detail but here are the dates and locations for the Compass Point Scottish O League 2016. Rick Houghton of Compass Point has announced that they will continue sponsorship of the league for 5 years until 2020. Their support provides gift vouchers for the winner of each course.
  • Moravian are the Sport Moray Team of the Year
    Scottish Orienteering’s connection with one of the big players in the Scotch Whisky industry went an unexpected step further last Tuesday evening when Moravian were the recipients of the Gordon & MacPhail Senior Team Award at the Moray Sporting Recognition Awards ceremony in Elgin Town Hall.
  • Board meeting minutes
    The minutes of the Board meeting held on 10th Oct 2015

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