December 2021

Published: 9 December 2021

From the president

Rob Tucker

Orienteering SA continues to present events every week despite Covid, thanks to the efforts of our many orienteers. MapRun is always there, and we are now into the Twilight Series, to be followed early next year by the Sprint Series.

Checkout a great article on Orienteering Australia’s Facebook this month on our own elite, Olivia Sprod, who currently is on loan to Spain having a great time working and orienteering there.

Unfortunately the Australian Orienteering Championships in Tasmania never went ahead, twice, but Orienteering Tasmania still put on a show with the Turbo Chook 3 Days. South Australia was well represented with some very close contests and top placings from Ethan Penck, Leith Soden, Toby Cazzolato, Marcus Cazzolato, Annabel Llyod and Jemima Llyod and good performances by Steve Cooper, Zara Soden, Ben Cazzolato, James Lloyd, Julia Lloyd and Lan Kelly.

At the OSA presentations on Sunday, the very well deserving recipient of the John Hall Memorial Service Award was Alan Holland from Saltbush Orienteers. More details of this and the other awards will be posted in ENews.

I expect many will compete in the Xmas 5 days, have a great Christmas and let's hope the New Year's activities will be more manageable than this year.

From the editor

Frank Burden

This, my last newsletter as editor, turned out to be a bumper edition covering a wider range of subjects than normal. It starts off with an article on the OSA Awards presentations, an overview of an international orienteer now returned to SA, a report on the Eyre Peninsula Championships, several articles on schools' orienteering, some technical articles, articles that cover club, state, national, and international orienteering highlights, a story on the travel adventure of a lifetime by six SA orienteers ... and considerably more.

Club memberships continue to grow, and, because of the tremendous efforts of several volunteers, orienteering is becoming more popular in SA schools. This is despite the pandemic and competition from a growing list of other sports. Our sport's combination of thinking with fitness in natural environments has a growing appeal for many. However, we have a long way to go when compared with countries like Sweden. All of this year's World Orienteering Cup and Championship events were televised by the country's national broadcaster and viewed by an incredible 10% of the population! Full-length videos with English commentary of these events, and more, can be accessed from the International Snippets article below.

An article on volunteering in orienteering by Robin Uppill is particularly relevant. My impression from over a year ago (when I was last able to attend an orienteering event) was that orienteering is thriving because of the efforts of a core leadership group of very active and dedicated volunteers. While their efforts are good for the sport, this volunteer base is relatively small and as a result is potentially fragile. All members should consider how they can help ensure that orienteering continues to thrive and grow by offering to help this group - don't wait to be asked.

Readers of this newsletter range from very young and enthusiastic orienteers to those who are long-retired, and there are many casual readers from interstate and overseas. In this and previous newsletters, I have been helped by members who have submitted articles and photos, and I have also attempted to produce articles that cover the range of potential interests of all readers.

One subject I have occasionally had difficulty with is finding club news that might be of interest to a broader audience. Some clubs post regular newsletters and updates to their club's webpages and facebook pages, which makes this task easy. However, some clubs have low visibility on the web, which non-members interested in taking up orienteering might conclude is an indication that the club is inactive. This I know is an incorrect perception.

My penultimate message to all members is thus get on to your club's executive (presidents or secretaries) if your club's highlights are not visible or being publicised outside of your club. Offer photographs or write articles for your club's newsletter, for the club's webpages or facebook pages, or for OSA's website, and even consider sending your ideas to this newsletter's editor!

And my final message is Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everybody

Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor

Congratulations on a most comprehensive and interesting newsletter. As a former SA orienteer the photos reminded me of many places we had orienteered. I would love to get back to Wilpena Spurs and Creek, areas that Jean and I mapped.

NB. we are Honorary members of Tintookies and OASA.

The other day I phoned Ron Larsson and had a chat about his digital timing sytem at the Easter 3 days at Wirabarra in 1981, also his radio controls system at WOC. He sounded very lucid over the phone and appreciated the call. Keep up the good work SA.

Basil Baldwin

Dear Editor

Many thanks to the organisers of the Friday evening events which are so enjoyable.

As I look forward to competing in the Scatter Course on the Friday evenings, I feel it is disappointing that those of us who, in the past, have put in effort to assist the running of SA Orienteering, are now just bundled into a class of 65 and over. There are those amongst us who would like another couple of classes, i.e. 75-85 and 85-95. Surely this would be fair?

Ann Nolan

OSA Award Winners

John Hall Memorial Service Award

Saltbush's Alan Holland received this year's John Hall Memorial Service Award. The annual award is presented to individuals who have "rendered meritorious service to the sport of orienteering within any club affiliated with Orienteering SA". Alan attended his first orienteering event in 1985, after which he became a regular at local events around Whyalla. Described as a "quiet achiever", he has been an active club member for 35 years, winning four club awards, holding several club committee positions, organising events, helping to construct the club trailer and club shed, producing and updating seven maps, and O-training at St Teresa's school. For more, see Alan's nominations here.

John Lyon presenting John Hall Memorial Services Award remotely to Alan Holland
Alan Holland receiving Award remotely by Facetime
Alan Holland (left) being congratulated by Saltbush president Greg Hancock
Sue Millard Trophy

The Sue Millard Trophy presented to the most improved junior orienteers: Gemma Burley and Remi Afnan.

Gemma Burley, Remi Afnan and coach Evalin Brautigam
Course Planner

Course Planner of the Year: Tyson Hillyard for the Foot and MTBO courses at Belair NP

Middle Distance Championships (Paradise South)

The Middle Distance Championship trophies were presented to all placegetters, including winner for W21A Emily Sorensen; and M21A Simon Uppill

Night Championship trophies (Rock Oyster)

The Night Championship trophies were presented to: Winning Club OHOC; Champion female Evalin Brautigam; Champion male Simon Uppill

Orienteers of the Year
M16AMitchell Stephens
M20AEthan Penck
M21AAngus Haines
M35ATyson Hillyard
M45AKym Barnett
M55ASteve Cooper
M65APaul Hoopmann
M75ARobert Smith
M21ASLuke Overton
M55+ASClive Arthur
MOBMatthew Maunder
W16AJemima Lloyd
W20AJoanna George
W21AAbigail George
W35AJenny Casanova
W45AKate Marschall
W55AZara Soden
W65ALeila Henderson
W75ACarol Such
W21ASLexie Ashforth
W45ASLan Kelly
W55+ASRuth Nicolson
WOBJanet Hillyard

Click or tap a photo to enlarge and click arrow or drag to see full gallery.

Introducing Vanessa Round

This was to have been a few introductory lines preceding an article written by Vanessa Round of Tintookies. Unfortunately, circumstances conspired against her and she was unable to complete the article in time, so this introduction turned into a promotion for her article, which should now appear in the March newsletter!

According to WorldofO, Vanessa represented Australia in nearly 70 international orienteering championship events between 2005 and 2018. As some of you will know, she has now returned to SA after living for several years in Europe. A summary of her record representing Australia indicates that her story will be a very interesting read, which should inspire many younger orienteers.

Vanessa has represented Australia in World Orienteering Championships (18 events in nine countries between 2008 and 2018), World Cup (34 events in numerous countries between 2008 and 2018), European Orienteering Championships (six events in two countries in 2014 and 2018), and Junior World Orienteering Championships (eight events in three countries from 2005 to 2007). Vanessa's highlight events are reported to be 6th in JWOC Long in 2007 (see the September 2007 issue of the Australian Orienteer for a report), and 9th and 13th in the World Cup in Spain in 2014.

Vanessa Round - World Championships 2008 Middle Final.
Photo: WorldofO

In addition to several action photos of Vanessa on the WorldofO website, followers of European orienteering might also have caught glimpses of her in videos of championship events. The screen shot below shows her on top of the leader board in the 2016 World Orienteering Championships Middle event held in Sweden.

WOC 2016 Middle - Leader Board

Orienteer profiles appearing in previous newsletters can be viewed by clicking on the links:

Eyre Peninsula Championships at Hidden Valley

John Paterson

A group of Saltbush Orienteers from Whyalla and Lincoln Orienteers enjoyed the bush surroundings at Hidden Valley on Moonabie Station in fine weather for the annual interclub competition, the Eyre Peninsula Championships on Sunday 8th August. Six championship and 3 recreation courses were set by course setter Jason Munday in between covid restriction periods.

Highlights of the results were Tim Ashman (Lincoln) winning the longest course (6.2 km) at 54 min 08 sec and Saltbush member Adrian Watson doing 2 courses (4.9 km and 3.9 km) and winning both (see photo below). Also, Saltbush member Alek Sims was the winner of the M21AS class (see photo below)

In the female classes Bella White from Lincoln was fastest in the 3.9 km distance courses at 66 min 05 sec, and Elise Clem from Lincoln was fastest in the 4.9 km course at 65 min 16 sec.

In the non-championship recreation courses Mel Bergmann from Saltbush was the winner in the 3.5 km course at a time of 75 min 05 sec. The full results are on the Saltbush facebook page and its website.

Adrian Watson, Saltbush President Greg Hancock and course setter, Jason Munday
Alek Sims holding his certificate with Saltbush President Greg Hancock

Sporting Schools

Zita Sankauskas
Orienteering SA Schools Support Coordinator

The aim of the Orienteering Australia – Sporting Schools PROJECT was to upgrade the booking in system for orienteering applications in Sporting School online applications and to develop a uniform Australian Orienteering school curriculum / program / lessons for Sporting School grant implementation, and thereby assist teachers to develop orienteering skills within their schools.

In 2020, a core group of representatives from all the states met by zoom to establish a common curriculum for PRIMARY years 3 + 4 , years 5 + 6 as well as a NEW SECONDARY curriculum for years 7+8. The PROJECT was being developed by McLaughlin Sports, and funded by an Orienteering Australia grant. Resource materials for schools were trialled late last year, with SA contributing significantly due to lack of COVID restrictions to the pilot program both within the Primary and Secondary schools system.

This concluded with a new learning program and lesson materials for years 3+4 called EXPLORE, for year 5+6 called LEARN , and the year 7+8 classes called Secondary Schools. The new booking in system for orienteering through Sporting Schools was launched in term 2 this year along with new online Delivery Guides - featuring the curriculum documents and resources.

Teachers had a new menu to select from, with choices of teacher own delivery, or getting an O coach delivery. Then there was a new add-on section, where they could choose options - having school map created, orienteering equipment delivered, teacher level O PD (professional Development). (SA even set up a new SA O equipment kit for $330 with 22 corflute punches, including start and finish, 20 punches, 10 A4 map zip- lock bags, and 10 A5 description slip zip-lock bags. Orders can be taken if anyone wants equipment. ) Also available was coach support, with country schools able to have meetings and PD via ZOOM

As a result of the new system, we received 10 Sporting Schools applications for orienteering in schools in term 2. This is the most SA have ever had. Orienteering was being conducted in schools to over 1, 223 students this term through Sporting Schools.

A direct result from the release of the new Sporting Schools Delivery Guides for both Primary and Secondary schools, and the introduction of Secondary schools grants for year 7+8 students. This has significantly lifted the numbers of teachers undertaking orienteering and developing their own orienteering knowledge in schools.

Term 3 saw another 10 schools applying for grant money to fund orienteering , of which 6 were teacher delivered, and 4 used O SA coaches.

Term 4 – a shorter term, also a record with 8 schools applying – 4 teacher own deliveries, and 4 used O SA coaches. WE had several schools wanting to do orienteering in the country, with Balaklava HS, Riverton School and jamestwon, as well as Minlaton in Yorke Peninsular, and Tumby Bay and Cummins on the Eyre Peninsular. Then there was Coober Pedy PS and HS, as well as Mimli Anagu School in the APY Lands. The new system and online delivery guide has assisted rural areas access orienteering in their schools.

The O Australia/ Sporting Schools project committee is now updating any “teething” problems with the original delivery guide, improving feedback from schools and looking at adding to the delivery guide lessons in 2022. Next year promises to be even more successful.

The following photos were taken at Jamestown Community School and include a student with disabilities joining in, and an amazingly enthusiastic year 7+8 class.


Mid-North Schools Orienteering Championships 2021

Zita Sankauskas
Orienteering SA Schools Support Coordinator

The Mid- North afterschool cluster training sessions took place in term 1 and 2 this year for the first time. This was set up by Zita Sankauskas with schools that had previous Sporting Schools coaching, as a means to have regular local orienteering training sessions in the mid-north area, with parents driving students to various schools. All the participating schools had the opportunity to run one afterschool cluster training from their school each term and most accepted. Those that didn’t had new replacement principals or new staff.

The sessions were a success, starting with students at first attending just in the host school attending the afterschool session, with numbers regularly over 20. Then, there was a group that started attending all the later sessions, with enthusiastic students urging parents to drive them to more and more events. We had 28 students at Auburn and 26 at Manoora, with students from 4 other schools attending the host school.

It was so good to have a very keen number of students, including Junior Primary, enjoying orienteering and attending regularly.

The only downside was that I had hoped schools would take over the course setting and running of the sessions. However, many times I was called out to assist, and ended up preparing and having to travel and run it. I hope that eventually, the schools will take it on board and that the schools participating will grow.

This was all as a lead up to the Mid- North Schools Orienteering Championships, that was held on June 4th at Balaklava PS + HS.


Most schools in the Mid-North Cluster opted in, with assistance needed from O SA members to run the event. We had a wonderful band of helpers that drove up from Adelaide for the day and ran the event extremely efficiently. Thanks to helpers: SI set up – Al Sankauskas, Trevor Diment, Colin Burgess, Set up – Marion and Clive Arthur, Starts – Craig Colwell, Finish – Erica Diment, Extra help – Aylwin Lim, Fi Pahour, publicity – Leila Henderson, and organizer Zita Sankauskas.

We had 118 students attend from 5 schools. The schools that attended were Balaklava PS and Balaklava HS, and small primary schools - Manoora, Watervale and Saddleworth.

We had a clash with SAPSASA Netball and Football in the metropolitan area which affected some of the students attending, but still had enough numbers to have a good competition.

Disappointing that some of the schools didn’t end up having students attend, but there will always be next year, when we would like to see the event grow.

Leila’s press release on the day meant that the Local Plain’s Producer newspaper reporter turned up to take photos, and we had some excellent press coverage and promotion of orienteering with an article published later. Thanks Leila.

All in all, a very successful start to orienteering in the Mid North of SA.

Click/tap photo to enlarge and click left or right arrow or drag to see full gallery.

Sporting Schools (Term 3) & Club Connect

Zita Sankauskas
Orienteering SA Schools Support Coordinator

Thanks to Robin Uppill who took on the Schools Coordinating role while I was away until September in West Australia. Also, thanks to Evalin Brautigam for coaching at many schools last term, including travelling to Coober Pedy to teach teachers and classes there.

Sporting Schools - Term 3

This term, we had 10 Sporting Schools applications for orienteering in schools; see note below for more information about Sporting Schools.

It is the second term in a row that we have had so many schools apply for orienteering through Sporting School grants. In six schools, the program was delivered by the PE teacher, with O Equipment purchased and most had a level O qualified teacher Professional Development. The other four had a coach supplied by OSA, with equipment and a level O teacher PD as well, to ensure the teachers can do their own orienteering programs in the future. Thus, we can see the benefit of the new Sporting Schools delivery guide and booking in system that Orienteering Australia worked on last year for both Primary and Secondary schools, and the introduction of Secondary Schools grants for year 7+8 students.

Schools were:

  1. Pinnacle College, Golden Grove School. New map by David George (Tintookies), coach delivery by Evalin Brautigam (OSA/OHOC) for three groups of years 4/5/6 - 75 students. Plus O equipment supplied.
  2. Mimili Anagu School, teacher own delivery for 40 students. Already have O equipment.
  3. Riverton and District High School. Teacher own delivery, with level O coaching PD undertook. Coaching to 35 secondary students. New map created by Adrian Uppill (OHOC).
  4. Brahma Lodge Primary School. School map created by David George, and coach delivery by Evalin Brautigam, with 20 Special Education participants. O equipment and teacher PD supplied.
  5. Mt Compass Area School – Teacher own delivery to use with 60 years 4/5 students. Equipment supplied. New map created by Adrian Uppill.
  6. Coober Pedy Area School, Primary. Coach delivery by Evalin Brautigam for 80 students. New map created by Angus Haines (OHOC) and Evalin Brautigam. O Equipment supplied.
  7. Coober Pedy Area School, Secondary. Coach delivery by Evalin Brautigam, to 60 secondary students. Plus teacher undertook level O coaching qualifications PD.
  8. The Heights. Map update by Ken Thompson (Tintookies). Teacher own delivery for 240 students. Plus O equipment and teacher undertook level O coaching PD.
  9. Northfield Primary School. New map created by David George. Teacher own delivery to 90 students. Plus O equipment.
  10. Balaklava High School. New map by Adrian Uppill. Teacher own delivery for 120 secondary school students. Teacher undertook level O coach PD plus O equipment supplied.

One other school undertook orienteering training – Heathfield High School, but for outdoor education students in year 10, so not through Sporting Schools grants. They had coaches – Zita and Al Sankauskas (OSA/OHOC), and David George, provided Sport Ident O equipment and coaching at Woorabinda Reserve.

That will mean orienteering being conducted in schools to over 820 students this term through Sporting Schools!

Photos: Permanent map run course at Winkler Park near Saddleton Primary School. Used as an extension to orienteeering at the school after the Sporting Schools sessions, and as a lead up to the 2021 first Mid North Schools Orienteering Championships.


Photos: Schools orienteering at Harvest Christian College, Kadina.

Club Connect

The new Club Connect grants are being offered to schools in conjunction with Sport Australia, Sporting Schools and local government councils; see note below for more information about Club Connect.

Club Connect is for afterschool orienteering, that then aims to link students with sport clubs. This is trying to get off the ground here in SA and other states. Trial offers for schools have been made in the Onkaparinga, Tea Tree Gully and Charles Sturt Council areas at this stage only. The problem is that schools have to apply and oversee the after-school program. So far there have only been minimal enquiries and it will need lots of guidance and teacher support to get it happening.

We have had one school, Hackham East Primary School, accept a grant for $5000, and are now able to purchase a small school SI kit with 10 controls and 30 ST sticks. They will also have funding to have afterschool orienteering supplied by OSA for the rest of the term. This is fabulous news, and the start of the Club Connect. All schools should apply.

We will follow up by offering afterschool orienteering with any schools that have done Sporting Schools orienteering during this year. If the schools are in the Club Connect selected Council area, we will encourage them to apply for grants to cover the follow up sessions. Council areas currently that have accepted are Onkaparinga, Tea Tree Gully, Charles Sturt, Adelaide Hills, Mount Barker and Wattle Range (Lower South East).

More updates to come. Watch this space!


Sporting Schools is a $320 million federally-funded program that aims to introduce orienteering (among 35+ other sports) to school children from prep to year 6 in schools located in a limited number of LGAs (six in SA). Targeted grant opportunities exist for year 7 and 8 students. Grants are in the range $1,000 to $3,600, and applications for a grant for each of terms 1 to 4 must be received about two months before each term starts.

According to a recent survey conducted by Sport Australia, orienteering was ranked in the top 15 of Sporting Schools grants awarded during term 2 of 2021. In total, 83 grants were awarded nationally for orienteering, of which 11 were for SA schools.

The Club Connect program aims to build on the Sporting Schools program by establishing relationships with local sporting clubs. Schools funded by the Club Connect program are expected to provide an out of school hours sport program, which aims to support prep to year 6 students in a transition from school-based sport to club-based sport. Officially, grant applications for the 2022 program closed on 5 November, and all Club Connect activities are to have occurred during terms 1 and/or 2, 2022. Grants cover delivery, equipment, supervision, transport, facilities and administration. There might be some flexibility in the grant application date, so still put in your application. It is not clear if a Club Connect program will be available for terms 3 and/or 4.

In addition, the State Sports Voucher scheme provides up to $100 discount on sports membership, with the aim of increasing the number of students participating in club-based sport. The 2022 scheme has been expanded to cover from prep to years 8 and 9 (years of birth 2008 to 2016). There is no cut-off date for voucher applications.

After-School Orienteering

Aylwin Lim

Various after-school orienteering cluster sessions were held in Central Adelaide, Mid-North, Adelaide Hills, Blackwood/Mitcham Hills and Southern areas this year. The main aim was to introduce orienteering to groups of students (and their parents) at their school grounds and nearby Parks. Most of these training sessions were held in the lead-up to the School Championships at Wadmore Park in May, and the Mid-North School Championships in June, although the Central Adelaide cluster, being self-funded, continued on throughout the year.

These activities attracted hundreds of students. Some subsequently came to our regular OSA events, and a few even joined a Club! The success of these events was often dependent on securing the cooperation of a teacher or parent at a school, and their ability and efforts to promote the events to their students. Schools which had good participation numbers included Black Forest, Goodwood and East Adelaide (All OSA member schools), and Hackham East, Balaklava, Manoora, Echunga, Stirling East and Hawthorndene.

Organisers included Aylwin Lim, Ben Cazzolato, Zita and Al Sankauskas, Ethan Penck, Anna Penck, Lucy Burley, Lexie Ashforth, Fern Hillyard, Robin Uppill and Evalin Brautigam, with many other helpers, including both regular orienteers and non-orienteering parents. Please contact our Schools Coordinator, Zita, if you would like to help with, or even start up, a school cluster in your area.

Below are some of the courses which the children did. You may like to try them out for yourselves. Click/tap on a map to download a high resolution version of it for printing, but be careful - the printed scale might not match exactly the scale indicated on the map. The school grounds below are open to the community in the evenings and on weekends.

MapRun Spring Series

Robin Uppill

Orienteering SA organised a special MapRun Spring Series, launched October 17 at Bonython Park, North Adelaide. MapRun6 is a phone app that uses your smartphone for timing and tracking as you go round an orienteering course displayed on your phone screen.  The app can be downloaded from the Google Play Store or the iPhone App Store.

The series covered a variety of terrains from parkland to bush areas, and course formats across October and November, leading into the Twilight Series.

Click/tap map to zoom

Craigburn MapRun Test Course

The MapRun Spring series comprised four events, all were listed in Eventor. These courses will be available for people to still do anytime until early January, so you can see the information and download the PDF maps at each event listing in Eventor as below. Click venue name to open up details. If you do not want to use the MapRun phone app, then you can navigate on a paper map only from the downloaded PDF.

Sunday October 17th – Bonython Park – Scatter courses of 11 and 20 controls.

Sunday October 24th – Sturt Gorge and Blackwood Hills – Longer trail running format line courses in a bush area with many tracks.

Sunday October 31st – Anstey Hill – 2 line courses in a bush area with many paths and interesting historical quarry areas.

Sunday November 7th – Adelaide Parklands visiting many of the monuments north of the city – score Courses of 60 mins and 90 mins.

Click/tap map and photos to zoom

Monuments' Controls

Details of the MapRun phone app  and how to use MapRun are here. This page also lists other MapRun courses that can be done anytime.

Volunteering in Orienteering in SA

Robin Uppill

In SA orienteering is essentially run by volunteers as are all the events. Some exceptions exist where funding is available e.g. for mapping of schools and delivering coaching through Sporting Schools grants, and other one-off grants generally from government sources (e.g. Sport Australia through Orienteering Australia, Office of Recreation and Sport in SA). OSA and clubs may also pay for other mapping as this is a very specialised activity.

We all need to thank the volunteers for their efforts. And the list is too long to mention people here although a few are acknowledged below for specific work they do. Sometimes thanking volunteers is done in a formal way e.g. at the OSA Presentation evening. The various clubs also have different ways of thanking their members e.g. my club OH usually has a couple of social events each year where the club provides some food e.g. Pizzas, meat for a BBQ.

Currently with pre-entry events only, and which have been in place with a couple of exceptions since June 2020, events can be run at the event by a smaller team of volunteers. On the day entries and payments, and entry into SI software are not required. Pre-entry requires commitment to attend the event, but entry closing date is left as late as possible – generally Wednesday evenings though the main season and Thursday evenings for the Twilight Series.

Pre-entry has a possible downside in that newcomers also need to pre-enter and also make a commitment to attend the event, so perhaps this makes attendance at events for newcomers less attractive. Initial registration in Eventor for newcomers is sometimes perceived as an obstacle, however registering to purchase “tickets” in advance to attend any type of event is the norm now.

However in our sport volunteering occurs at many levels which may not be apparent to the event participant. OSA Management administers the sport overall, management is a group of volunteers and has some unfilled roles. Fi Pahor is filling in as secretary, however a new secretary is needed after Erica Diment relinquished this role following many years of service. Others have limited time to contribute to their current roles e.g. Bridget Uppill as Coaching Coordinator, Andrew Kennedy as Treasurer, and a new editor of the SA Orienteer is needed in 2022. Clubs provide delegates to the OSA Council meetings, and are able to provide 2 delegates to any council meeting but many often provide only one attendee. Without an active management team supported by club delegates, forward planning in orienteering is often overwhelmed by keeping up with current tasks.

Events are run both by clubs and OSA (Twilight Series for example). At an event, many participants are not aware of the effort that has gone into the presentation of that event for you. Before the event, this includes:

  • Creating the event in Eventor to enable entries
  • Planning and checking the courses, the effort varies significantly depending on the type of event and the number of courses required
  • Preparation of the course maps and arranging for their printing once entries have closed
  • Getting the required equipment together including controls and SI Units
  • Putting out the controls and the SI Units
  • Setting up the SI event on laptop to be used at the event (uploading entries and course information)
  • Organising the helpers for the event
  • Publicity e.g. to ENews and Facebook

At the event – setup ready to run the event, running the event and packing up/collecting controls after the event. And after the event, result have to be checked and posted to Eventor. Photos and maps may be posted to Facebook, and courses to RouteGadget.

The above list may sound overwhelming to new orienteers, and many of the above activities do require some skills and experience, especially some of the pre-event tasks. However this is less so to help at an event on the day, and helping at an event is a good way to get to know other club members and other orienteers in general. With volunteering, we all start to contribute in a small way, and this may be all we have time for. However the volunteering contribution may increase depending on our skills and availability. All clubs support new volunteers providing guidance and mentoring.

Another key role at some events is the Event Controllers for our championship events. This requires a person with controller accreditation to supervise an event by another club. In 2021 the event controllers were:

  • Aylwin Lim – SA Sprint Championships
  • Phil Hazell – NOL (National Orienteering League) Middle Distance event
  • Jenny Casanova – NOL and SA Long Distance Championships
  • Peter Mayer – SA Schools Championships
  • Robin Uppill – SA Middle Distance Championships

Other OSA activities run by volunteers include the after school weekday events (Aylwin Lim is a significant contributor here, supported by many others), and other coaching and training activities (the calendar for these is organized by Evalin Brautigam). See this page if you want to join any of these training activities.

Water on Courses

Robin Uppill

This article was written several years ago, but is timely to repeat in the current newsletter, with some 2021 additions.

Parts of this article has been rehashed form a previous article in the SA Orienteer in an effort to encourage competitors to help both themselves and organisers. This follows issues being raised about placing water on courses at OASA Council, in part arising from the significant effort required to do this at carnival events in 2002 (and subsequent carnivals)

For the Competitor

My personal solution for this issue is to carry my own water in a 500 ml drink bottle in a pouch on a belt, and I have been doing this for several years. Having lived in warmer climates this also was often an essential item on longer training runs. Other methods for carrying your own water is to use a couple of the 250 ml pop-top bottles in which fruit juices are now sold in some supermarkets, and fitting them into pockets sown on the back of your “O” pants or a belt.

By carrying your own water several eventualities are covered eg other competitors having drunk all the water before you reach a water control, being able to have a drink when you need it and not when the course planner perceived that you might, or becoming lost and never finding the water control. After working in the finish at the 2002 carnival, another factor was revealed. Several competitors at these events failed to punch controls where there was water, presumably because they drank and then forgot to punch before continuing. Although the standard procedure at water controls should be PUNCH FIRST, DRINK SECOND, if you are carrying your own water, this is no longer an issue.

Providing water for competitors on courses is perhaps an issue for which we should take some responsibility ourselves. By carrying our own water we will reduce the workload for course planners and organisers. In addition, we should all ensure drinking adequately hydrates us before we start on a course (drink around about 30 minutes beforehand).

A selection of water bottles and pouches are available from many good camping or outdoor shops. Several people have indicated to me that when they first run with a water bottle they found it inconvenient, or they didn’t like the extra weight. However a 500ml bottle filled with water will add only a little more than 0.5 kg, so the extra weight as a percentage of body weight is minimal. Try running with a water bottle on your training runs to accustom yourself to it.

For the Course Planner

Current rules regarding placing water on courses as outlined in the Orienteering Australia rules for Foot Orienteering are summarised as follows:

“If the estimated winning time is more than 30 minutes, refreshments shall be available at least every 25 minutes at the estimated speed of the winner. Drinks shall be located at controls or compulsory crossing points.”

Hence currently the water must be at a control or a place which a competitor has to visit, and not somewhere they may choose to visit (unless they abandon the course), and most courses require at least one water control.

For the course planner placing water on courses may become an onerous task, especially in areas with a limited track network. However the effort can be reduced by planning the water controls whilst planning the courses rather then leaving them as an after thought and adding in at the last minute. To make life easier for the course planner, water controls can be planned to be on or near tracks or accessible locations. For example follow a good long leg with a shorter easier leg finishing with the water control. This may necessitate easier legs on hard courses, but I would not expect most competitors would be too concerned about this if the remainder of the course is well planned.

Update 2021

Additional background information in supplying refreshments was added to the Appendix 4 – Section 2 as a result of the COVID pandemic. Reference to providing water in sealed drink bottles as an option for example.

In SA, the practice has been to minimise the provision of water on courses except for the warmer months at the beginning and end of the main program. This has been based on competitors pre-ordering water as a service, and in some cases not having water at controls but at marked locations on tracks.

Another option in recent years with the use of spectator controls has been for competitors to leave their own drinks at a control near the assembly area. Again this is a suggestion in the current guidelines.

“At races where there is a (spectator) control near the arena, organisers may encourage competitors to leave their own individually-labelled drinks for delivery to that control.”

This is a very useful approach for the longer courses at Long Distance events. A recent item by Nick Wilmott in the Orienteering Australia ENews suggests we should all toughen up and carry our own water, based on the Australian Three Days this year. However perhaps the long distance courses here were a case where the course planner (and controller) could have planned ahead and had spectator controls at the arena giving them one easy water location. The trend to make orienteering more spectator friendly and have spectator controls was surprisingly missing from the Long Distance courses at this event. The impact of little water on courses was also compounded at this event by the class winning times being significantly exceeded for many classes (and this was not just due to lack of water on the courses).

Midweek Orienteering Training

Erica Diment

Did you know that once a month, on a Wednesday, there is a daytime Orienteering training session? It’s true.

The training originally started as a resource for military personnel, but slowly the military faded away and the general Orienteering population took advantage of the opportunity. The group is mostly made up of retired people (who are free in the midweek daytime), and others able to work part time or on holidays.

The participants also share the duty of setting. This gives them some practice at setting courses and is only a small commitment as there is only one medium hard and one short hard course on offer.

Generally controls with punches are used, with an occasional event with electronic timing using the schools kit. We do record times for the participants, but the focus is on practicing skills and on debriefing after the event.

I, for one, enjoy the chance to take my time on courses and practice my skills with no performance pressure. I often try to take a more complicated navigation option on these days, instead of the safe option. I can gradually practice my skills and grow my confidence this way.

The orienteers are a friendly bunch and often bring lunch so that they can sit and eat their lunch as they talk about the courses and catch up with each other in a relaxed atmosphere. Then usually a few offer to help bring in the controls for a bit of extra exercise.

Zita Sankauskas debriefing with Jeffa Lyon

This year we tried a “season ticket” payment , which offered a reduction in fees (usually $5 per training event). This was taken up by a good number of the participants.

The training is open to all, and needs entry via Eventor to allow the course setter to organize the correct number of maps and to organize payment.

The events for 2022 will be on:

  • Feb 16th
  • Mar 16th
  • April 7th
  • May 11th
  • June 15th
  • July 13th
  • August 17th
  • Sept 14th
  • Oct 19th
  • Nov 16th
  • Dec 7th

Three Months of Northern Adventure

Six Orienteers sharing the holiday of a lifetime

Erica Diment, photos Erica and Zita

Many South Australian orienteers would be aware that six of your number took off from the June long weekend orienteering events in the Flinders and headed north instead of heading back to Adelaide. Just over three months later we finally darkened our own doors again. In the meantime we had a wonderful time (mostly) marveling at what Australia has to offer.

Over the last few years Craig and Evelyn Colwell, Al and Zita Sankauskas and Trevor and Erica Diment have all travelled to attend orienteering events and sometimes rogaine events interstate and overseas. This time the travel was hardly planned at all around those things. There was a rogaine near Perth late in the trip which Craig and Ev were keen to attend. That was all the competition that any of us had in three months.

We all wanted to see the Kimberley, so we hatched a plan to get up there, now that we are mostly retired and Ev could get long service leave. We figured we were still all relatively mobile, so now was the time to grab the opportunity. The rest of the trip was planned around seeing the Kimberley at the best time of year with as little backtracking as possible.


From Rawnsley (we left from that last event of the long weekend) we headed north through the Flinders Ranges to Blinman, Leigh Creek and then on to Farina for the first night. Then it was on up the Oodnadatta Track, through Finke and on to Alice Springs via the Old Ghan Railway Heritage Trail. Al and Zita had their trusty A van, Craig and Ev their Vista van and the Diments had their hilux with camper on the back. Some of the track to Alice was pretty rough, with washaways, and corrugations being notable. The colours of the countryside were awesome.


We enjoyed a brief shop and stop at Alice Springs, and then headed north briefly before turning north-west on to the Tanami. The Tanami was bitumised for the first 300 or so km, but then turned to dirt and was badly corrugated in places and very dusty. We enjoyed camping in roadside stops along here, including a really lovely bird haven at Sturt Creek along with Trevor’s sister and her partner. There were a lot of birds of prey across the Tanami and lots of green on the sides of the road.

We made our way through Halls Creek, to the remarkable Purnululu (Bungle Bungles) for the first of our stints of a few days walking into gorges before heading onwards to Kununurra and Lake Argyle.


Then on to the Gibb River Road. The roads were all open by the time we got there, and COVID was left far behind, so we really enjoyed our three weeks along the Gibb River Road, despite the many adventures with vehicles which were experienced. We even made it up to Mitchell Falls. This was a wonderful time of walking the gorges and swimming in beautiful pools.

Rainbow bee eater with fur coat on ready to go out for dinner.
Rainbow bee eater dressed more informally.

The adventure continued as we went to Broome and had a delayed trip to the Horizontal Falls before we headed westward and inland to Karijini and Millstream National Parks, and to Ningaloo Reef. The Broome Bird observatory is really worth a visit. Then we were heading down the WA coast.

Girls relaxing at Karijini NP
Boys relaxing ....
Giant Boab at Manning Gorge
Roebuck Bay, near Broome, and the home of the Broome Bird Observatory. Amazing coloured sand.

The giant Boab at Manning Gorge gives shelter to a whole tour group camp. They always seem to look like people, and we saw them dancing, embracing and arguing over the course of our trip.

The boabs dance on a moonlit night
Silvery shapes In the silvery light
Their bulbous bodies bend and twirl
Their many arms twist and whirl

The fruits that hang from their fingertips
Shake in time to their moving hips
Their silent dance is an eerie sight
If you happen to see it on a moonlit night

We were very lucky to catch the best wildflower season for quite a while inland from Geraldton, where we even saw the famed wreath flower, along with an amazing array of native orchids and everlastings.


After a brief stop in Perth, and the Rogaine (for the Colwells) we headed homewards via the Stirling Ranges and some more wonderful native orchids in the South /west area (including the Queen of Sheba orchid), and then the terrific crossing across the Nullarbor, with some of us stopping of to see the whales.


It was a long time to be away and quite tiring to be on the move so much, but a wonderful adventure with great friends. We are glad that we all “seized the day” while we could to do this.

New Baby

Erica Diment

A new baby – Maybe a new orienteer of the future???

Some orienteers may remember Laura Bell (OHOC) and Thomas Diment (TT) who met as junior orienteers and married in 2012.

We are pleased to let you all know that they have managed to return to Adelaide from a stint in the UK (where Laura completed a PhD at Oxford and then worked at Southampton Uni) and added a new little Diment to the family on the 13th of November.

Little James Alasdair Diment came into the world weighing 9lbs and measuring 53cm in length. He has excellent lung function which he is demonstrating well.


SA and NT event results

SA and NT have been active since publication of the last newsletter. There have been numerous events, as can be seen here, but not all results have been posted. All results published on Eventor since September are listed below - click link to go to the respective results' pages. Some results for events held from mid to end of December will become available when published. For all results, including splits, RouteGadget and OY results, going back to 2013, click here.

DateEventEvent type
05 Sep 21Log Hut GullyFoot orienteering
12 Sep 21Nicolson-PlayfordFoot orienteering
12 Sep 21Narrinyeri Hills Long OY (Kinchina Conservation Park)Foot orienteering
19 Sep 21O'Halloran Hill - Glenthorne ParkFoot orienteering
19 Sep 21Navigator College - End of Season eventFoot orienteering, Park and street orienteering
19 Nov 21Twilight Series Event #1 - Southeast Adelaide ParklandsFoot orienteering, Park and street orienteering
26 Nov 21Twilight Series Event #2 - PanoramaFoot orienteering, Park and street orienteering
03 Dec 21Twilight Series Event #3 - Torrens Linear Park in ParadiseFoot orienteering, Park and street orienteering
10 Dec 21Twilight Series Event #4 - NE Adelaide ParklandsFoot orienteering, Park and street orienteering
17 Dec 21Twilight Series Event #5 - HenleyFoot orienteering, Park and street orienteering
18 Dec 21Christmas Turkey OFoot orienteering, Park and street orienteering

Club/State Snippets

Expansion of SA Government Sports Voucher Scheme

As part of the 2021-22 SA State Budget, the Government announced the expansion of Sports Vouchers to students in Years 8 and 9 commencing from 1 January 2022. This means that in 2022, children aged 5 to 15 years old (year of birth 2007 to 2017) will be eligible for a Sports Voucher.

The Sports Vouchers program is a SA Government initiative that provides an opportunity for children to receive up to a $100 discount on, among other things, sports membership and registration fees. The purpose is to increase the number of children in organised sport.

For more information click here, and click here for an application form.

South Aussies in National Squads for 2022

Orienteering Australia announced a new national squad setup for 2022 comprising a High Performance and a National Development squad. South Aussies named in the squad are:

High Performance. Simon Uppill (OHOC), Olivia Sprod (Tintookies), Bridget Uppill (OHOC).

National Development. Dante Afnan (Yalanga), Angus Haines (OHOC), Emily Sorensen (Tintookies), Lanita Steer (Tintookies).

Congratulations to all South Aussies. More details including names of all squad members can be found here.

The squads will be reviewed regularly once competitions start again. OA will also be inviting expressions of interest from all juniors (under 20s) who would like to be involved in the JWOC training squad, which will be put together in the next few weeks. Please contact OA with any questions about this, including if you are a junior or know of any juniors who would like to be involved in the JWOC training squad - contact details are on the OA website.

OSA Committee Minutes

Membership. As of 15 October, SA/Top End club membership grew to 443, which is up 7 on the 2020 membership. An additional 138 casual registrations were recorded compared with 82 last year. Nearly 5,200 school members from eight schools were also enrolled. For SA/NT to grow its membership is quite an achievement. Over the past year, amateur sport memberships around the world have taken a hit because of the pandemic's adverse effect on training and competitions.

Kuitpo risks. The Committee was advised by Forestry SA of increased risks associated with the layout of some permanent orienteering courses. This occurred because of an extended NO PUBLIC ACCESS area around the Kuitpo depot, which was created because of the movement of heavy machinery, log trucks, fire appliances and work vehicles. As a result, the courses have been updated. The new start/finish is 150m North East of the Kuitpo Forest HQ, opposite the junction of Peters Creek Rd and Brookman Road. All new Kuitpo maps can be found here.

Early History of Orienteering SA. If you are interested in the early history of OSA, Ken Thompson has been transcribing early annual reports and posting them here. Our association was officially established in 1975.

MapRun. Robin Uppill reported that OSA will receive a grant of $5,000 for MapRun projects to cover setting of courses (including for Belair Hiking Expo), a website page, a video, promotion, and support for the MapRun spring series. Peter Mayer also proposed that future Mountain Bike Orienteering events use MapRun because it simplifies setting out of controls, ie no need for stands and punches, and competitors can ride by controls without stopping in a manner similar to using SI Air cards in national and international events.

Changes to courses and classes. Because of the improved standard of junior orienteers, a proposal has been made to increase course distances for the under-20s.

Marketing and Promotion. Leila Henderson has initiated a number of projects. These include planning promotions around every orienteering event, identifying ways to improve the visual quality of promotions, increasing engagement using social media, production of a flyer for the MapRun Spring series, and encouraging clubs to contact Leila prior to events to improve or coordinate event promotion.

National membership model. Orienteering Australia proposed eliminating family memberships with membership based only individuals. To date, the proposal has been resisted by OSA management because of the many advantages of family memberships. Robin Uppill is coordinating an OSA response to be presented to OA in late November/early December.

Strategic planning. Robin Uppill is coordinating club input into the OSA Business and Strategic Plan 2022-2024, which should be finalised by the end of this year. The Plan is aligned with strategic objectives developed and published by OA.

OSA events

Contingency events! Following the cancellation of this year's Australian Championships, a mix of forest and urban training events were held at the end of September. Venues included Narrinyeri Hills West, Tower Hill, Belair NP, North Adelaide, and Flinders University.

Permanent Courses. New courses are available in North Adelaide. They are on a new part of the Adelaide Parklands map, which is a project that has been coordinated by Adrian Uppill. All permanent course maps can be found here. Regularly check that you have the latest copy of a map as courses are often changed, out of bounds areas marked, and courses can sometimes be closed or have restricted access, for example because of fires and re-development.

Summer event timetable finalised. A full twilight series of events has now been finalised. Click here for details.

OSA Homepage Articles. Since the last newsletter, the following articles have been published. The following summaries include links to the main articles:

  • MapRun Spring Series. Four MapRun events were run in October and November. Venues were Bonython Park, Sturt Gorge and Blackwood Hills, Anstey Hill, and Adelaide Parklands. For more, click here.
  • Summer Orienteering. The Adelaide series of park/street events has been finalised to end of February. For more details, click here.
  • Orienteering SA Presentation Evening. The annual OSA Presentation evening was held at Glenunga Hub on Sunday 5th December. The following awards were presented, after which attendees enjoyed a picnic tea on the outside veranda and lawns. For more details, click here.

Club tit bits found in meeting minutes, newsletters and on the web


Lincoln orienteers were again active in the period since the last newsletter. Their end of season event was held at Navigator College, which marked the use of the first map (an impressive effort) produced after many hours of toil by Austin Clem. The full report of the event is here, which also includes a copy of the map. A month later, the club's 2021 annual award presentations were held. Photographs of the club winners are on the club's facebook page.


Roy Bierton, long-time OHOC member and past OSA treasurer, passed away in October aged 97 years after a short illness with pneumonia. Although 10 years since he last orienteered he loved to walk in Belair Park each Saturday morning, which he was able to do in early October after driving there from his home in Netley. Brian Wale also passed away in October at the age of 88. He was a competitor in the sport from 1955, president of OHOC in 1978, and life member of OSA and OHOC.

Orienteering Australia appointed OHOC member Brett Weihart to its Board as Director-High Performance. With over 25 years orienteering in Scandinavia, including three years coaching at WOC for the Australian team, Brett also brings to the Board vast corporate experience. Brett spends the majority of his time in Sweden but also is frequently in Australia. Read the full report here.

The club held a BBQ at Unley Oval on Nov 21st as an end of year social function. Thanks to David Tilbrook for organising the venue and the meat for the BBQ.

Robin and Adrian Uppill were busy preparing a series of MapRun courses made available in October – early November. Both also journeyed to Yorke Peninsula to make a map of Minlaton District School as part of Sporting Schools, whilst Zita and Al Sankauskas ran a teacher training session at Jamestown Area School also as part of Sporting Schools


The club's Alan Holland was presented with the 2021 John Hall Memorial Service Award. See Awards article for more.

With Lincoln Orienteering Club, the club organised the Eyre Peninsula Championships, which was reported above. More news on the club, including photographs and an article on the club's awards are here.

Alan Holland (right) receiving Club Person 2021 award from president Greg Hancock
Top End

Despite having a relatively small membership compared with some SA clubs, Top End has a very active group of orienteers and event organisers. The club's latest newsletter covers many topics, including a mapping experience, government grants for mapping, interschool orienteering and school championships, event reports, a history section, a focus on a prominent club member, and many photographs.


A long article on club founding and life members Basil and Jean Baldwin was published in the September Australian Orienteer (pages 30 - 33). They received the Distinguished Long Service Award for Orienteering at this year's annual NSW Community Sport Awards after nearly 50 years supporting orienteering in Tasmania, South Australia and NSW. Descriptions of their time in SA between 1976 and the early '90s provide an interesting insight into early map-making and event organisation in SA and Australia.

The club's Emily Sorenson was the first elite orienteer to be interviewed in a new series run by the Orienteering Australia High Performance Management Team. The full interview is here. And the third elite orienteer to be interviewed was Olivia Sprod, also of Tintookies. Olivia recently moved to Spain where she is teaching English. Her interview was also published on the Orienteering Australia news page here.


Although not active on social media during the past three months, the club's members have been very active at events as well as organising and supporting O-training and coaching in after-school orienteering.


The club fielded competitors from age 8 to 88 at the Club Relay Championships held at Trinity College in August. The club also had seven place getters at the SA Middle Championships at Paradise. The bush orienteering year for the club finished with its organisation of the NarInyeri Hills event in September. Club newsletters published every two months can be found here.


The club celebrated six victories over the past seven years when it took out this year's club relays at Trinity College. The club's report on the event can be found on its newsletter page here.


OSA's mapping effort continues, with David George (3) and Adrian Uppill (2) being the leading producers.

Mapping software


OO Mapper is free mapping software that can be installed on Windows (7 and higher), MacOS (10.12 and higher), and Android (4.1 and higher) computers.

The current version remains as 0.9.5, which provided several enhancements and fixed some bugs found in earlier versions.

For more information and downloads go to the OO Mapper website.


OCAD is Windows-only software and is now only available as a subscription version for single users or teams.

The annual license for the full team version is just under twice the single user fee (about $A375 compared with $A220), and two users can use OCAD per team license. Although sounding restrictive, OCAD offers the option of transferring licenses between team users within 24 hours. Thus, several team members could have OCAD installed on their computers but only two per license would be able use it at any one time. Discounts are available for three year licenses and volume purchases, and there are also limited and cheaper versions.

The current version of OCAD is 20.5.14, which has corrected minor bugs and added some enhancements. Users are notified of new updates when they start the program. Older non-subscription versions of OCAD have not been updated for some time. For more information on updates and features go to the OCAD service update page.

National Notes

Orienteering Australia

OA Secretary, Andrew Lumsden, reported that AusPlay recorded that 23,000 Australians orienteered this year, compared with 12,000 in 2019. Of these, 56% of participants were men and a majority of adult orienteers were women.

Orienteering Australia announced a new national squad setup for 2022. These are High Performance and National Development. More details including names of squad members can be found here. Seven South Aussies were named, as reported above.

International Snippets

This Year's International Championships

Superb videos with commentary, maps and live GPS tracks, and WorldOfO race analyses for foot events, where available, are available as follows:

European Orienteering Championships / World Cup Round 1 (Neuchâtel, Switzerland)
Sprint Relay - 13 MayOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
Knockout Sprint - 15 MayOfficial video/live GPS
(qualifiers live GPS)
event analysis
Individual Sprint - 16 MayOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
World Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships (Kuortane, Finland)
Mass Start - 12 JuneOfficial video/live GPS
Sprint - 13 JuneOfficial video/live GPS
Middle - 14 JuneOfficial video/live GPS
Long - 16 JuneOfficial video/live GPS
Relay - 17 JuneOfficial video/live GPS
World Orienteering Championships (Czech Republic)
Individual Sprint - 3 JulyOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
Sprint Relay - 4 JulyOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
Middle - 6 JulyOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
Relay - 8 JulyOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
Long - 9 JulyOfficial video/live GPSMen event analysis
Women event analysis
World Masters Orienteering Championships (Hungary)

Held 6 - 13 August, links to Sprint, Middle and Long event descriptions, results, maps, photos and some short videos can be found here.

World Cup Round 2 (Idre Fjäll, Sweden)
Long - 12 AugustOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
Middle - 14 AugustOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
Relay - 15 AugustOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
Junior World Orienteering Championships (Turkey)

The rescheduled championships were held on 5 - 10 September, and included Sprint, Middle, Long and Relay events. Event details, results, photos and full length videos with commentary (good quality but mainly of start/finish and not as good as WOC and World Cup videos) are available as follows:

Sprint - 5 SeptemberSprint page and resultsVideo
Middle Final - 7 SeptemberMiddle Final page and resultsVideo
Long - 9 SeptemberLong page and resultsVideo
Relay - 10 SeptemberRelay page and resultsVideo
womens relay is fully recorded
but video freezes at 2hrs 50mins
before finish of mens relay
World Cup Round 3 (Cansiglio & Cortina, Italy)
Long - 30 SeptemberOfficial video/live GPS
only of finish
event analysis
Middle - 2 OctoberOfficial video/live GPSevent analysis
Sprint Relay - 3 OctoberOfficial video/live GPSno event analysis

International impact of Covid-19 on orienteering.

Covid-19 cases for key European orienteering nations continue to rise. Although slowing earlier, the rate of rise increased over the past three months, as Europe entered its winter months, and more recently as the latest variant of the virus (omicron) made its presence felt. Most European nations had been attempting to live with, and not eliminate, Covid-19. The recent arrival of the new variant caused the postponement of the start of the European winter ski orienteering season.

The intention of restrictions (e.g. social distancing, group size limits, mask wearing, limited lock downs, restrictions on movements when needed, and vaccinations) is to keep local infections at manageable levels and not overwhelm hospitals. Some European nations have re-introduced lockdowns, especially for the unvaccinated, and are requiring the fully vaccinated to have had a booster.

The cap on orienteering event participation limits was generally removed in many countries at the end of September, but recent developments could see these being reinstated.

The following case numbers were obtained from Our World in Data. As of 2nd December:

  • While still rising, confirmed cases in Sweden have flattened significantly since June. Current infection totals are about 11.8% of the population compared with 11.1% three months earlier.
  • The curve had been flattening in Switzerland, but began to rise significantly. Confirmed cases there are now about 11.5% of the population compared with 9.0% three months earlier,
  • Denmark has also experienced a significant rise in cases and is now around 8.4% compared with 6.0% three months earlier,
  • Norway is 4.8% compared with 3.0%, and
  • Finland is 3.3% compared with 2.3%.

To put these figures into perspective, the total number of reported cases in the USA are now about 14.6% of its population, compared with 11.9% three months earlier. In Australia the number is still less than 1% (seems like considerably more according to the Australian media!). The current Australian number is about 0.8% of its population, compared with 0.2% three months earlier. The number of Covid cases in Australia is thus still significantly less than that in key European orienteering countries, where many major national and international events have been held this year.



The participation limit for public events was removed on 29 September. It then became the responsibility of event organisers to determine what restrictions should be applied at events. Updated Swedish Orienteering Federation guidelines on managing events are here. In general, these emphasise social distancing, hand hygiene, avoiding crowded areas, testing, and vaccination, and specifically for orienteering not sharing equipment and wherever possible striving to do as much as possible (ie meetings, training, competitions) digitally and/or outdoors. Note: no mention of face-masks!

Over one million Swedish TV viewers, over 10% of the population, watched the Orienteering World Cup Round 3 (final) in Italy. All major international orienteering events (WOC in Czech Republic, the combined World Cup Round 1 and European Orienteering Championships in Switzerland, World Cup Round 2 in Sweden, as well as World Cup Round 3) were broadcast by the Swedish national public broadcaster (SVT) this year.

The Swedish Orienteering Federation, together with two other sports federations, and the Swedish Sports Confederation and SISU (agency for Sports Educators), received an innovation grant of 2.9 million Swedish Krona (about $A460,000) to develop a method to reduce travel with high climate impact. The joint application was one of 16 to receive a grant out of 114 applications. The study period will last two years.

For more, go to O-news releases.



There were no significant pandemic-related reports in the period since the last OSA Newsletter. The indications are that orienteering training and competitions have now returned to near normal despite a significant rise in Covid cases over the past six months.

Other Swiss O-news including reports of events can be found here.

Restrictions stricter than those applying in Sweden and Switzerland apply in Denmark, Norway and Finland.



After winning seven world championships, and 23 international medals, at the age of 33 Maja Alm recently announced her retirement from international orienteering.

There were no significant pandemic-related reports in the period since the last OSA Newsletter. The indications are that orienteering training and competitions have now returned to near normal.

More Danish O-news can be found here.



The Norwegian Orienteering Federation continues to reinforce to clubs the availability of funds for lost income arising from pandemic restrictions. Applications for funds cover 50% of lost revenue for cancelled events, and 70% of lost revenue for events that were partially completed.

As a result of a high vaccination rate in the country, the participation limit for public events was removed on 27 September. General commonsense protection measures remain in place, such as social distancing, hand and cough hygiene, stay at home if sick, and test for Covid-19 if you have respiratory symptoms.

More Norwegian O-news can be found here.



There were no significant pandemic-related reports in the period since the last OSA Newsletter. The indications are that orienteering training and competitions have now returned to near normal. MTBO appears to be featuring more in articles.

The Swedish national team coach, French multiple world orienteering champion Thierry Gueorgiou, moved to Finland to become the national team coach.

More news can be found here.

Health and Fitness Snippets

How to improve map memory - exercise more!

Search the internet and you'll find many articles and links to videos on the benefits of exercise. One that orienteers over 35 might find interesting is the ABC documentary "How To Live Younger" that aired on 22nd September. The program (Episode 1 Fit) is available for streaming on ABC iview here.

The episode described a number of benefits of exercise. One benefit relevant to orienteering relates to the effect of exercise on the hippocampus, which is the part of the brain associated with learning and memory. Normally, the hippocampus shrinks in size from middle age at a rate of about 1% per year, and as it shrinks the ability to learn and remember also declines. However, studies found that exercise increased blood flow in the brain, which can halt and even reverse the decline in the size of the hippocampus and improve brain function. A scientific article on this effect is here.

So the next time you find that you've lost your position on the map, forgotten which control you're heading to or just visited, or you're having difficulty planning and then remembering the route to the next control, forget memory training and exercise more!

The importance of being physically active throughout life

In a study just published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America and reviewed in The Havard Gazette, Professor Daniel Lieberman and co-researchers from Havard describe why humans evolved to be physically active throughout their lives, and why lack of lifelong physical activity increases disease risk and reduces longevity.

The study lends credence to the saying that "people do not quit being physically active because they grow old - they grow old because they quit being physically active". The study describes how physical activity steers excess energy away from potentially harmful mechanisms, such as excess fat storage, and why resulting physiological stress that damages the body at the molecular, cellular, and tissue levels causes the body to respond by building back stronger.

A more extensive review of the relationship between evolution, ageing and physical activity appeared in the Havard Magazine.

Peta Bee, health and fitness journalist

Peta Bee is a freelance health and fitness journalist who writes regularly for The Times and other UK newspapers. Her stories are often re-printed in the online version of The Australian. The summaries below are a sample of a few recent articles with some direct or indirect relevance to orienteering. This page lists all recently published articles, but you will need an account with The Australian to read the complete articles.

Vegans beware (16/11/21)

Several orienteers are vegans, and there are probably many more who are contemplating changing their diets to plant-based foods. However, switching to plant-based foods is not always healthier because studies have shown that many vegans have a higher consumption of ultra-processed foods than the rest of the population. Processed foods are generally more calorific.

General vegan diet rules are:

  1. Be careful with ‘fake’ meat - opt for unprocessed proteins where possible
  2. Check the salt content before you eat
  3. Go easy on vegan cheese - it’s full of saturated fat
  4. Don’t assume vegan desserts are more healthy
  5. Beware of lentil/chickpea crisp snacks

Information sources referred to in the article were The Vegan Society, Susan Lanham-New (professor of nutritional sciences at the University of Surrey), Dr Tammy Tong (a nutritional epidemiologist at the University of Oxford), the journal Cell Metabolism, and a survey by the charity Action on Salt (located at Queen Mary University of London).

The best and worst things you can eat, ranked by scientists (16/11/21)

We are constantly reminded that more vegetables and fruit, and less meat, refined carbs and alcohol, should be in our diets in order to stay healthy.

In an attempt to provide guidance on this subject, researchers at Tufts University created Food Compass, which is claimed to be the most comprehensive system for ranking food. Over three years, 8,032 foods and drinks were evaluated against 54 different attributes and allocated a score from 1 (least healthy) to 100 (most healthy). Foods and drinks scoring 70 or over should be encouraged, 31-69 should be consumed in moderation, and 30 and below consumed infrequently.

Food Compass score examples; from Tufts Food Compass webpage

Dariush Mozaffarian, a cardiologist and professor of medicine, and his team of researchers from the Friedman School of nutrition science and policy at Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts, aim to extend the Food Compass database to up to 80,000 foods.

Go to sleep: Why early bedtime is essential to good health (14/11/2021)

A team from the University of Exeter in England reported that people who went to sleep between 10pm and 10.59pm had lower rates of heart disease than those who did so earlier or later. The incidence of cardiovascular disease was 25 per cent higher in those going to bed at midnight or later. “Our study indicates that the optimum time to go to sleep is at a specific point in the body’s 24-hour cycle and deviations may be detrimental to health,” said Dr David Plans, a senior lecturer at the university. “The riskiest time was after midnight, potentially because it may reduce the likelihood of seeing morning light, which resets the body clock.” The association with increased cardiovascular risk was stronger in women.

How to eat to keep your brain young (10/10/2021)

Researchers at the University College Cork (UCC) have reported that the state of our gut microbiome, the vast collection of bacteria, fungi and yeasts that inhabit our digestive tract, may also hold the key to brain health by protecting cognitive function and reversing the damaging effects of ageing on our brains. The study has opened up possibilities in the future to improve the levels of beneficial gut microbiota as a therapeutic target to influence brain health.

The article appearing in The Australian went on to describe a number of foods that are beneficial to the microbiome, because they contain key ingredients that nourish beneficial gut microbes. These include:

  • asparagus, artichokes, leeks, chicory and bananas, which contain inulin, a form of soluble fibre,
  • some fermented foods and drinks, and cheese, which are full of live bacteria, and
  • leafy green vegetables, which contain fibre that feeds gut bacteria.

Antibiotics, salt, processed food, and foods with artificial sweeteners and emulsifiers, should be avoided because they have an adverse effect on the gut microbiome.

December Australian Orienteer

Michael Hubbert (AO Editor, still!)

AO December 2021 Cover Page
Cover photo: Matt Doyle (Canberra Cockatoos) at NOL Broulee Dunes event.
Photo: Tom de Jongh –

The December edition covers JWOC 2021 with the performances of two Norwegian and one French "almost Aussies" highlighted. We analyse routes chosen by placegetters in the Women's Long Distance at WOC 2021. There's some details of the 2022 Melbourne Sprint Weekend and of the 2022 AUS Championships carnival.

As well, some clubs are celebrating significant milestones so we bring you a little of their history. There's an opinion piece by Raphael Mak on why he thinks Orienteering will never become an Olympic sport. Sport Integrity Australia gives some advice to Masters competitors, while Ian Dodd discusses philanthropy in sport. And there's the usual MTBO, Spot the Difference, News and O-Spy sections, as well as an intriguing piece by Peter Hopper on forensic orienteering.

Yet another one not to be missed.

If you are a member, you can elect to receive a hard copy of the Australian Orienteer. You can do this by logging in to Eventor here, then go to My Pages, which should open My Profile automatically, then click the Information tab, and tick box next to " I wish to receive the Australian Orienteer magazine as a hardcopy".

Some OSA and Top End Photos Found on the O-web

The photos are a small selection of many taken at sprint/urban and bush events up to the publication date for this newsletter. Most photos were copied from OSA's, Top End, Port Lincoln, Saltbush, and Tjuringa Facebook pages. They are in very approximate time order.

Click/tap to zoom image. Then click/spread to see at full resolution. Click left/right arrows, or drag, to see the complete gallery.

Competition Program

The summer period is when the orienteering calendar is mainly street/park orienteering on Friday evenings. For the latest program and event information go to the OSA Event page. The confirmed competition program on 2 December for Adelaide and surrounds, Lincoln, Saltbush, and Top End clubs, is as follows.

Warning: because of possible Covid-19 restrictions, all events are subject to change or cancellation at short notice. It is important that you regularly check event details with organisers.

DateEventOrganising clubDiscipline
Fri 10 Dec 21Twilight Series Event #4 - NE Adelaide ParklandsOrienteering SAFoot orienteering
Fri 17 Dec 21Twilight Series Event #5 - HenleyOrienteering SAFoot orienteering
Sat 18 Dec 21Christmas Turkey OOrienteering SAFoot orienteering
Fri 14 Jan 22Twilight Series #6 - Hazelwood Park and BurnsideOrienteering SAFoot orienteering,
Park and street orienteering
Fri 21 Jan 22Twilight Series #7 - Northern Adelaide City ParklandsOrienteering SAFoot orienteering,
Park and street orienteering
Fri 28 Jan 22Twilight Series #8 - Kingston Park, MarinoOrienteering SAFoot orienteering,
Park and street orienteering
Fri 04 Feb 22Snap Sprint Series Race 1SA ArrowsFoot orienteering
Fri 04 Feb 22 - Sun 06 Feb 22Adelaide Sprint CampOrienteering SAFoot orienteering
Fri 11 Feb 22Snap Sprint Series Race 2SA ArrowsFoot orienteering
Fri 18 Feb 22Snap Sprint Series Race 3SA ArrowsFoot orienteering
Fri 25 Feb 22Snap Sprint Series Race 4SA ArrowsFoot orienteering

Comments and Feedback

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