3 days 11 hours ago
Legit and in print!
(need to update that number)
A rugby buddy shared this rather deep thought (for a rugger) and I thought of our clan.....
5 days 14 hours ago
"Advanced control placement."
1 week 2 days ago
Results from yesterday are in, and isn't it interesting how two newcomers won both their races. Looks like we've got some competition building. Welcome Jarred and Cameron!
RouteGadget is UP - http://wncoc.org/gadget/cgi-bin/reitti.cgi
SplitsBrowser! - http://wncoc.org/gadget/cgi-bin/reitti.cgi?act=splitsbrowserjs&id=53
Usage tips - Use the pulldown to select the course. Use the 'All' button to select everyone. Click a highlighted name to exclude them. Click and hold on any given control column in the graph area to see everybody's splits for just that leg.
Thanks again to everyone who came out and had fun with us!
Beginner course - 12 controls, 1.6 Km
Jarred Lehr 0:17:57
Cameron Overstreet 0:18:03
Mike Guyer 0:18:52
Idoia Gorosabel Gkikas 0:22:40
Steve Leeson 0:22:46
Aitor Gorosabel Zamorano 0:28:05
Steve Deblois 0:35:29
Carolina Paredes 0:39:41
Guillermo Falquez 0:47:15
Ryan Prendergast 1:55:57
Intermediate course - 16 controls, 3.1 Km
Jarred and Cameron 0:34:33
Phil Guyer 0:36:18
Jim Hall 0:36:27
Sammy Pants 0:40:14
Steve Leeson 0:48:32
Almon R Cox 0:55:42
Alexa Braun 0:57:38
Philipp Trummer 1:03:27
Alaric Aaronson 1:06:48
Trey Gwyn 1:08:54
Kaitlyn Guyer 1:10:45
Lisa Hotaling 1:13:16
Svacchandya Est 1:16:46
Poison Ivy Julia Lethcoe Moore 1:45:22
Advanced course - 21 controls, 4.2 Km
Brandon Smith 0:31:27
John Braun 0:38:54
Sara Molskness 0:39:09
Bryan Hoofnagle 0:42:54
Zach Friedman 0:50:44
Trung Lively 0:52:19
Sloan Poe 1:03:01
Victor Mariano 1:25:56
Mike Guyer 0:34:03 (DQ - skipped #14)
SplitsBrowser graph for Beginner: (I removed Ryan's low time because it scewed the output too much)
1 week 2 days ago
1 week 2 days ago
Advanced. Again, drop Mike because he DQ'd by missing 14 and his results are thus screwy.
1 - 1 week 2 days ago
1 week 3 days ago
What a great morning for orienteering at Buncombe Country Sports Park! Thank you to everyone who attended and contributed to yet another awesome time for all. Results and RouteGadget soon!
Somebody please tell me how I've been neglecting the "beer" symbol (713 Refreshment point) this whole time.
You really don't need to indicate it at the start/finish (where it might be expected). 😉 Usually used at control points or spots on trails that most courses will cross where organizers will set our water bottles and cups. (Symbol on description sheet goes in last column) OUSA rules require water stops at certain intervals for "sanctioned" events. Local events have more leeway.
1 week 3 days ago
Seeing this made my heart leap, and not in a good way. Hear me out, though, because it's a good story.
I'm on my way out of the park this morning after field checking the course, and while waiting for traffic to pass, I glance to my left and see the marquee. It says, "HAVE A SAFE SUMMER," and I smile, thinking, "right on, Parks and Rec, you have a safe summer, too!"
Then, I look the other way (for cars) and see the other marquee, which has something different written on it. I read it again, let is sink in, and realized in that moment we may have a minor crisis on our hands.
I drove to McDonald's to have a burger and think things over.
Right away, I Googled, "radio controlled air show buncombe county park" and got a couple of local blog posts promoting it. The organization's name was "Asheville-Buncombe Aeromodelers."
I clicked Contact and called Dave, the president.
"Hi, is this Dave?"
"My name is Chris and I'm calling about the RC air show at Buncombe County Park this weekend."
I mentioned that we're a growing club and never take up much space, and we are having a little get-together on the SAME DAY, at the SAME TIME, and I need to know ASAP either how to stay out of their way, or (worst case scenario) if they were occupying the entire park, and we'd have to (gasp) RESCHEDULE our meet.
When he explained that they were only occupying a certain set of soccer fields north of the pavilion, and the rest of the park would be open to the public as usual... and, he had no problem with us simply avoiding their area... I let out a giant sigh of relief and thanked him, saying I'd revise the map to mark those fields out of bounds, remove the one control I'd placed "in their fly zone," and make sure we are all aware and not disturb their guests.
THEN, he starts asking me about what kind of orienteering we do, because he used to teach orienteering to scouts, and knows all about it. We ended up chatting for 45 minutes, and from this one fruitful phone call, it's apparent that Dave from A-B Aeromodelers is one of us, and will soon be joining us for some orienteering in the future.
So make sure, if you see an airplaney guy with a "Dave" name tag on Saturday, you say hello, because he's a new friend.
What a world.
Check out their site, and spread the word to anyone you know who would be interested in attending. It looks like it'll be some neat stuff! http://www.abaeromodelers.org/
Hey Asheville-Buncombe Aeromodelers R/C Flying Club folks, we're looking forward to meeting y'all on Saturday! In chatting with Dave, I mentioned we'll have a gaggle of kids in attendance, and will absolutely stop over and check things out. Very cool!
1 week 5 days ago
I just splashed my way to all the control locations for Saturday's meet and am glad I did. Some places are much greener than they were when we were here in June, so I'll have to retool a few control placements (and make a couple of map tweaks.) It's going to be great!
A word about disc golfers. Sadly, they aren't all supercool, chill hippie folk, as some of us learned at Richmond Hill Park.
We ARE temporarily in their way sometimes, yes, so let's do our best (as we all have) to minimize that time as much as possible by being aware of ourselves in these areas.
My part, as course setter, will be to minimize the controls placed "in" (and routes through) the disc golf course going forward. It cannot be avoided altogether, but we'll try our best.
Also, I will update maps to not only include the fixed tee pads (currently a black X,) but also the fairways and baskets (with special symbols.) This will help you help me help them. 😀
How long are the courses for Saturday by way of the Raven? I gotta work at noon but I really want to run something. Thanks!
1 week 6 days ago
Project Retrofit is complete, and our prototype electronic timing system is back up to 20 units in time for Saturday's meet, Orienteering at Buncombe Sports Park. It'll be great to have complete split times on longer courses (fingers crossed!)
Fun fact -- each device contains a few wooden Popsicle sticks, hot glued to the circuitry to provide insulation against interference. High tech, eh?
2 weeks 3 hours ago
Under the hood, reworking the guts of our homemade electronic timing system. You wouldn't believe how soothing it is to solder tiny little wires while blasting Mozart at rock and roll volume.
The best thing about our meets is you can do the same course whenever your schedule allows. You just need the $4 GPSO app. No flags, but the sudden joy of your phone beeping is an entirely different racing experience.
John Braun runs a winning time of 16 minutes and 39 seconds on Course 1 at our short-and-sweet-meet at Fletcher Community Park.
John Braun's headcam video of his run yesterday - 16 minutes of heavy breathing that'll make you tired just watching it. Don't get the impression that everybody works this hard at orienteering - only the competitive!
Tonight was a HOOT, and there's too much to share in one post. We had 14 finishers and lots of smiling, sweaty faces.
We got COMPLETE SPLITS this time out of our homemade timing system (OTIMCON,) after retrofitting them with new hardware... and the RouteGadget, which is up already WITH RESULTS -- we have some truly meaningful analysis, now!
Tinker around with SplitsBrowser and see! Attached is a relevant screenshot where you can see exactly who lost how much time to who, and where... it's a bottomless pit for stats nerds.
RouteGadget (please send me your GPX - this new "results" thing means adding routes yourself is a little weird until you/we figure it out)
Course 1, 9 controls, 2.6Km
John Braun 0:16:39
Almon R Cox 0:17:55
Sammy Pants 0:20:20
Jim Hall 0:21:26
Sloan Poe 0:21:31
Idoia Gorosabel Gkikas 0:26:55
Misty Iseley DeBlois 0:27:10
Erika Gutierrez de Montoya 0:27:40
Carolina Paredes 0:34:54
Team Poe 0:40:32
Althea Gkikas (9 yrs old, solo!) 0:41:14
Ryan Prendergast 0:44:19 (DNF, teeny kids!)
Course 2, 9 controls, 2.7Km (super tight race!)
Almon Cox 0:17:15
John Braun 0:17:36 (+11s)
2 weeks 5 days ago
Two short and sweet courses THIS EVENING at Sprint Orienteering at Fletcher Park!
Start any time between 6 and 7pm. Park in the far back of the lot - see you there!
3 weeks 10 hours ago
A stated goal of this whole thing is to normalize orienteering in the area by doing a LOT of it, and that's how we wind up with a short notice, weeknight event like Thursday's Sprint Orienteering at Fletcher Park.
We're aiming for "orienteering level: Scandinavia." 😁
Course 1 - 2.6Km, 9 controls
Course 2 - 2.7Km, 9 controls
Come run it fast (or walk it slow) and be home in time for dinner.
3 weeks 2 days ago
"Tougher than usual" courses yesterday at Richmond Hill Park meant a lot of DNFs! You'd be hard pressed, though, to find someone who didn't have a great time!
We had 27 finishing times, and a number of those represent teams of people with kids and dogs. Thank you to everyone who came out and enjoyed navigating in the woods!
RouteGadget is UP and loaded with 7 routes already. So far, the matchup to watch is Pat versus Sammy. Holy cow, the lead changes!
RouteGadget - http://wncoc.org/gadget/cgi-bin/reitti.cgi?act=map&id=51
BEGINNER - 2.0km, 8 controls
Team Carolina Paredes and Almon R Cox - 1:08:47
Team Steve Deblois and Misty Iseley DeBlois - 1:37:53
Idoia Gorosabel Gkikas & Co. - 1:39:12
Kaitlin Mattison - 1:43:14
INTERMEDIATE - 4.2km, 17 controls
Zach Friedman - 1:44:59
Bee Smythe - 2:02:33
Jim Hall - 2:40:05
Alexa Braun - ?? (timing failure, my fault)
Victor Mariano - 4:01:27!
David Turner - 3:00:14 (DNF, 12 controls)
Team Netta Shepherd Vogt - 2:26:58 (DNF, 11 controls)
Kendra Connolly - 2:24:37 (DNF, 11 controls)
Keith Connolly - 2:26:23 (DNF, 11 controls)
Tom Sharkey - 2:44:18 (DNF, 11 controls)
Kaitlyn Guyer - 2:31:11 (DNF, 10 controls)
Svacchandya Est - 2:31:29 (DNF, 10 controls)
Taylor Cook - 1:13:21 (DNF, 8 controls)
ADVANCED - 5.0km, 20 controls
Mike Guyer - 1:51:16
Josef Point - 1:57:37
John Braun - ?? (timing failure, my fault)
Laura Goetz - 2:25:50
Sammy Pants - 2:33:36
Patrick McGillicutty - 2:35:56
Sloan Poe - 2:40:05
Sara Molskness - 2:45:00
Al Beers - 2:17:02 (DNF, 8 controls)
3 weeks 3 days ago
First one's out, as is the sun!
3 weeks 4 days ago
Here's a teaser leg from tomorrow's Intermediate course. Which way would you go? The long way around the trail, or bushwhack straight at it?
You can still preregister here - https://goo.gl/forms/miXkdpmooWbXKIps2
3 weeks 5 days ago
Hey, everybody, here are some updates about our next meet, Orienteering at Richmond Hill Park on Saturday.
Courses are now set! Here are the details.
Beginner - 8 controls, 2.0km -- Follows trails the whole way and is a great excursion around the park, including the most exciting control locations. Please be aware that while this course is kid-friendly, it is NOT stroller-friendly.
Intermediate - 17 controls, 4.2km -- A challenge no matter what your skill level, this will test your ability to navigate the maze of trails out there. Suitable for durable children. Still a no-go for strollers.
Advanced - 20 controls, 5km -- A bit more distance and confusion. There is actually a little less route choice and some more running, but experienced orienteers will appreciate the periodic breaks in navigation for some good ol' running legs. Suitable for big kids, and if you can push a stroller around this course, you will receive a special award.
RAIN OR SHINE -- The weather looks wet in the afternoon, but you know how forecasts in the mountains go. Please be prepared for anything, most importantly the foliage! Remember, it's better to overdress and go home without any poison ivy than the other way around!
Please carpool if possible. Parking is limited (52 spaces.) We share this place with the general pubilc, and it's a popular spot for joggers, dog walkers, and disc golfers.
The start and finish area are denoted by the purple circle and triangle in the attached image. The timing tent will be on the left as you pull in.
If you still haven't pre-registered, please do so here -- https://goo.gl/forms/JuDllb5b6fNcydkO2
Remember, this is event is FREE and open to the pubilc, and donations are very much appreciated!
See y'all Saturday!
3 weeks 6 days ago
Just finished adding 40 more timing key-fobs to our collection, meaning we can now accommodate NINETY orienteers at a time on our prototype e-punching system. How long before we need even more!?
4 weeks 9 hours ago
Time's winding down until our next meet on Saturday, Orienteering at Richmond Hill Park! It's is a wonderfully diverse bit of wooded terrain that you'll love navigating in.
It is *strongly recommended* to wear protective clothing like long pants or tights, tall socks, and/or long sleeves for this meet. This place is VERY GREEN and has enough poison ivy to ruin your day if you aren't prepared.
Don't let that deter you! The Beginner and Intermediate courses are being designed to require little if any off-trail travel, and controls will be on (or very near) trails. I still recommend long pants or tall socks to protect against incidental contact.
The Advanced folks will be tempted (suggested?) to plow through some greenery, so plan accordingly.
If you haven't preregistered, take a minute and fill out the quick Google Form to reserve your map and timing key-fob -- https://goo.gl/forms/SAByTpRuwHzE9S4H3
1 month 2 hours ago
The 'Richmond Hilton' now has a strong challenger for "coolest control location," and this is the only picture of it I can show you.
1 month 2 days ago
This is the 'Richmond Hilton,' a cozy little getaway overlooking the French Broad River. The views are great, but the room service is terrible.
It has a pool, also pictured, but it's like half a mile away.
Prepare to find these locations next Saturday during our next meet, Orienteering at Richmond Hill Park !
1 month 4 days ago
A natural side effect of orienteering is that your visiting friends from other places want to take it home with them. Looks like we'll be adding Johnson City to the list of places we go orienteering!
ANOTHER new map on the way!
Buckle up, Johnson City.
1 month 6 days ago
Let's all be Masters together someday, okay?
VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS from today in Copenhagen
Our video producer complained today. Too many fantastic spots. To cover them all he walked 12 km, which might be the record for today. 🙂
Enjoy Edgars Sparans Films impressions from the Sprint Finals.
My favorite control location from yesterday's meet.
Yesterday's orienteering meet was a lot of fun, and we smashed the attendance record with 40 participants!
Thank you so very much to all, especially those who volunteered their efforts to help it go smoothly.
RouteGadget is UP and accepting GPS file uploads. You can send me your GPX files and I will add them, or find the tutorial I recently posted and learn how to do it yourself.
RouteGadget >> http://wncoc.org/gadget/cgi-bin/reitti.cgi?act=map&id=50
White course - 2.3km, 7 controls
Kristin Trummer - 56:08
Sloan Poe - 56:58
Kaitlyn and Blair Guyer - 1:00:17
Idoia Gorosabel Gkikas - 1:01:12
Melanie Stowell - 1:17:14
Ryan Prendergast - 1:35:04
Yellow course - 3.0km, 15 controls
David Turner - 46:30
Trey Gwyn - 51:07
Kaitlyn Guyer - 55:46
Kristin Trummer - 1:16:22
Gina and Mark Romine - 1:30:22
Sara Boelt - 1:32:47
Sara Bassett - 1:33:10
Sierra Gerringer - 1:33:29
Julie Santiago - 1:39:36
Alexa Braun - 1:56:50
Team Vogt - 1:16:24 (DNF, out of order)
Steven Deblois & Co - 1:32:32 (DNF)
Jess Law and Matthew Reese - 1:20:39 (DNF)
Orange course - 4.4km, 17 controls
Jim Hall - 1:01:02
David Waller - 1:08:24
Sloan Poe - 1:08:35
Laura Goetz - 1:39:59
Julia Lethcoe Moore - 1:50:08
Team Claire and Michael Poole - 1:50:16
Taylor Cook - 2:07:01
Team Vogt - 1:07:33 (DNF, out of order)
Red course - 5.4km, 24 controls
Mike Guyer - 55:53
Sherry Downing - 1:06:56
David Waller - 1:10:14
Shaun Michael Pope - 1:13:29
Julie Santiago - 1:16:56
Josef Point - 1:17:01
David Aaronson - 1:17:02
Trung Lively - 1:26:06
Sammy Pants - 1:30:14
Russell Schroeder - 1:30:17
Lyle Mitchell and Jaimie Vancil - 1:33:49
Phil Guyer - 1:40:12
Patrick McGillicutty - 1:50:50
Charles Miller - 2:00:18
Tomorrow's meet at Black Mountain Veterans Park is nearly upon us! Maps and key-fobs are now programmed, bagged, and ready for you to have a great day orienteering!
If you have not yet pre-registered, please do so to save yourself some time and hassle -- https://goo.gl/forms/Pi0Gig04WbgMynLv1
We have a record number of entries (34 pre-registered) which on one hand is awesome, and on the other hand is a minor concern.
We have "only" 50 key-fobs, which means we *could* run low during the meet. This means that you can either wait for a fob to return, or you can use the manual pin punches to mark your 'passport' and not have electronically timed splits. It's not the end of the world, and maybe won't even be an issue - I just wanted everyone to be aware that some supplies are (currently) limited, but EVERYBODY will get out there with a map (I printed plenty.)
I have programmed all pre-registered entrants' key-fobs with their names and courses.
There are TWO white courses - one's a little longer than the other one. If you pre-registered for white, you have your choice tomorrow morning.
If you're on the Orange or Red course, you should wear protective clothing (long pants, long sleeves) that's lightweight because it's supposed to be HOT, and if you're nervy enough to go through ANY green sections of the map, you will take home some lasting, itchy souvenirs without precautions. You can always use trails, but some of us are not that smart. 😜
GPS watch or smartphone - BRING IT so you can add your GPS route to our RouteGadget after the meet for "analysis."
COMPASS - we do NOT have rental compasses yet, so please bring your own. If you do not have a compass, but have a smartphone, you can download one of many different free compass apps that will be perfectly adequate.
We will have WATER and BEER, but not in that order.
See everybody ANY TIME between 10am and 2pm!
Preliminary courses for Saturday's meet are now set! Here are some notes to help you decide.
White - 2.8km, 9 controls. A nice introductory tour that takes you through most parts of the map. All controls are near the trail and no bushwhacking is required. Jogging stroller friendly.
Yellow - 3.0km, 15 controls. Not much different than White, but includes controls with more advanced placement and a wider area of travel.
Orange - 4.4km, 17 controls. The gloves are off, and unless you want to go the really long way, your feet are going to get wet. Challenging, with lots of route choices to be made.
Red - 5.4km, 24 controls. Advanced course for people that expect to be soaking wet, filthy, and exhausted when it's over. Bring your A-game, a towel, and a change of clothes.
Remember to mark your attendance accurately in the event, and pre-register here -- https://goo.gl/forms/PuLXieQqfcpyZOnl2
Agree - if it's Green, think twice. This was going to be the subject of a whole other post. 😀
1 - 1 month 2 weeks ago
After many hours in the field this week, the improved Black Mountain Veterans Park map is ready for Saturday!
Here are snapshots of the wooded area near the track before this week's revisions, and after.
Remember that you can PRE-REGISTER for this FREE (donations loved) event with this Google Form >> https://goo.gl/forms/gGZI5z8ezNDDG9tB3
Keep an eye out for upcoming posts on what to bring, what to wear, and what to expect!
RunsOnBeer runs the brown course at WNCOC's third public meet. Black Mountain Veterans Park, Black Mountain, NC wncoc.org Facebook.com/wncoc
Whole Lotta Mosey Goin' On
I spent another few hours traipsing about Black Mountain Veterans Park today, field checking the new map ahead of Saturday's meet. Those of you who used "the old map" (back in the day) will really appreciate the improvements!
In this snippet, I lowered the map's opacity so you can clearly see two days' worth of my GPS tracks.
Chris Gkikas Good stuff! I do a lot of that style of mapping, too. When tracking a trail be sure to not move too quickly around the bends and to have your device set to one second recording of points (instead of the more common default of four seconds). Go even slower when tracking in a clearing or thicket as the GPS will tend to round in the corners and make the feature seem smaller. When going out and back to place a point feature be sure to pause a few seconds to let the feature get set at its true point. Make notes on a paper copy of the map[ as you go. But I'm sure you all know this. The advice is for those who may want to copy you.
1 - 1 month 2 weeks ago
1 month 3 weeks ago
While there's still a ton of paperwork to submit, we are now ON THE MAP as a chartered, associate Orienteering USA club!
What do you think? Orienteering summer camp program? 😲
I was at William W Estes Elementary earlier this morning for the 3rd grade Honor Roll assembly and was tickled at how many kids came up to me afterwards wanting to talk more about orienteering. They were positively buzzing!
One asked me if I have a summer camp for orienteering. He was disappointed when I said "No," but then perked right up when I added, "not YET!"
Here are some highlights from the giant stack of 'Thank you' cards they made that shows just how enthused kids are about orienteering.
Summer camps for orienteering are a great idea. There is one taking place near Montreal this summer. On-going orienteering programs for youth are popping up in a lot of places. Here is why parents of the 10 to 13 youth love orienteering: 1) It gets the kids outside and away from their phones and computers 2) it gets the kids exercise. lots of it, in a fun way and most importantly 3) the kids are learning to and practicing their thinking and decision-making skills. They get information from a map, they concentrate on the important information, they make a decision on where to go from that information then they carry out that decision, making adjustments until they reach the goal. Then they do it again. Adventure Running Kids, Kids Running Wild are a couple of popular programs in Canada.
1 - 2 months 2 days ago
2 months 4 days ago
How to upload and adjust your route on WNCOC's RouteGadget.
1. Obtain a .GPX or .XML file of your route
2. Visit wncoc.org and click on RouteGadget
3. Click Upload GPS, select your .GPX file and then click Ok >>
4. Drag and adjust the three blue anchor points such that your route looks accurate
5. Add your name, time and or comment
6. Click Save
2 months 5 days ago
Great time today at Buncombe County Sports Park for WNCOC's "Grand Re-O-pening" sprint orienteering event!
If I were forced to come up with a complaint, it would be that I didn't get to spend as much time as I would have liked getting to know ALL THE NEW PEOPLE!
We were joined by whole families with little kids (babies!) and dog walkers and stroller pushers and shufflers and runners and veteran orienteers and complete newbies and folks who learned about the event via Reddit(!?)
RouteGadget is UP and ready for your routes! Please email your GPX files to me at chris[at]northlinenavigation.com and I will get them added. I will be making a screencast tutorial for how to add your own route.
RouteGadget for the event is here - http://wncoc.org/gadget/cgi-bin/reitti.cgi?act=map&id=49
Here are the overall results. I'm still working on how to make Splitsbrowser-friendly output from our OTIMCON timing devices, which worked very well today barring a couple glitches.
White - 1.7km - 9 controls
Ryan Prendergast - 35:04
Victor Mariano - 35:16
Alexa Braun - 43:39
David Aaronson - 43:48
Elise and Althea Gkikas - 53:42
Devin Kelly - 00:00 (double Finish mispunch)
Bryan Hoofnagle and Drew - 24:39 (incomplete, 5 controls)
Yellow - 2.1km - 12 controls
John Braun - 29:19
Scott Thomas - 34:27
Kaitlyn Guyer - 45:17
Al Beers - 55:22
Laura Goetz - 57:17
Julia Lethcoe Moore - 58:51
Ryan Prendergast - 1:01:37
Victor Mariano - 1:01:38
Doug Launius - 1:13:07
Orange - 3.3km - 16 controls
Jim Hall - 38:20
Kendra Connolly - 1:08:04
Kit Hayes - 1:08:04
Kara M. Cassels - 1:11:25
Svacchandya Est - 1:37:53
Red - 3.8km - 23 controls
Mike Guyer - 33:55
Sara Molskness - 48:55
Lisa Feltes Hazlett - 49:50
Josef Point - 51:08
Andrew McKinney - 51:54
Sammy Pants - 51:54
Phil Guyer - 57:58
Alaric Stowell - 1:21:11
Patrick McGillicutty - 1:21:24
Brandon Smith - 29:43!!! (DQ - error - oh, the humanity!) 😉
2 months 6 days ago
Late in tomorrow's Red (expert long) course at Buncombe County Sports Park, things will get a little tricky.
If this image freaks you out because you have no idea what it means, DON'T PANIC! There will be much simpler and easier course options for beginner and intermediate participants!
The first thing that happens is, someone introduces you to orienteering. After that, it's a slippery slope that often leads to a lifetime of camaraderie, physical fitness and sharp mental acuity into old age.
Today's 3rd Grade Orienteering Day event at William W Estes Elementary was a great success! Everybody loved it!
With gracious help from Jim Hall and my wife Idoia Gorosabel Gkikas, we managed to wrangle and turn 160 smart, funny and (very) competitive kids into veritable navigating machines. Mostly. 😉
I'd be hard pressed to think of a better activity than orienteering for preparing kids for life. It's way more than just reading a map and running around looking for checkpoints. Orienteering makes developing skills like teamwork, planning, sportsmanship, physical fitness, and most of all, courage... FUN.
There was no doubt, at the end of today, that school orienteering in Western North Carolina is about to become a BIG THING!
Back when our maps were kinda weird and we used crayon passports and homemade plastic cardboard controls WE STILL HAD A BLAST.
Joining us Saturday for this kind of fun?
This is how we go orienteering in WNC ~~ The "O"nly thing missing is you!
Please Like our page for news and information on WNCOC's frequent goings-on so you can join the fun!
And, we're back! 😁
After a few months off during the winter for a (very) different event that I direct, we've been secretly developing and improving the core components of Western North Carolina's new orienteering c̶u̶l̶t̶ club and are happy to return with a new event in the coming weeks!
1. New maps of Buncombe County Sports Park, Fletcher Park, Richmond Hill Park, and Montford Rec Park
2. Improved OTIMCON timing system with instant printed results
3. Combination of GPS Orienteering events (the Android app) and traditional events using control flags and timing devices.
4. Growing back catalog of past events, converted into GPS Orienteering courses that can be explored on your own
5. Super fun gizmos and analysis tools like RouteGadget, Digital Online Map Archive (DOMA) and headcam videos
Stay tuned for an announcement of the next event, which will be VERY soon -- in the meantime, here are some pictures of what we've been cooking up.
Hope to see you soon!
8 months 2 weeks ago
Orienteering in Western North Carolina will, of course, include some outrageously mountainous courses!
We're excited to head out to some steep and gnarly terrain tomorrow for a long slog on a brand new map-in-progress -- should be a banner day!
9 months 1 week ago
Drove over to Durham yesterday to see our good friends at Backwoods Orienteering Klub for the 2017 Bubbagoat, and had a great time!
My first goat race came with the requisite blunders, the greatest of which was my failure to skip a control because I simply *forgot* to. Sprinted the last five controls after I'd given up, thinking I was over the time limit, but was informed I still had twenty-ish minutes on the clock. I finished in a bleeding, panting, smiling heap -- an official finisher!
Here is my route on RouteGadget - http://wncoc.org/gadget/cgi-bin/reitti.cgi?act=map&id=36
Static map with route - http://wncoc.org/doma/show_map.php?user=gkikas&map=6
9 months 3 weeks ago
Shirt details for this upcoming event in the Piedmont! Who else wants to road-trip to a mysterious new set of maps?
Just a quick friendly reminder that if you are planning to participate in the Bubbagoat on November 4 and you would like a shirt, you will need to register here before Monday (Oct 23). If you don't want a shirt, you can wait to register. http://backwoodsok.org/2017-bubbagoat-and-chapel-hill-score-o
10 months 4 days ago
Bryan Hoofnagle's headcam run of the Orange course last weekend.
In his defense, his error near the Manor House at Control 5 was exacerbated by poor mapping (missing roads, inaccurate buildings,) and for that, I, the mapper, am to blame.
Now, his great big adventure finding Control 8, though... only he can take credit for that. 😉
WNC Orienteering Club is based in Asheville, NC. Facebook.com/WNCOC wncoc.org
Today's meet in Black Mountain was the second occasion on which we've gone orienteering during a hurricane. Big thanks to all who participated in a mix of wind and rain, sometimes torrential.
The timing system worked really well, and I'll be putting together everyone's results, splits and GPS tracks on the RouteGadget tomorrow. Happy (off) trails, everyone!
10 months 6 days ago
We've begun! Black Mountain Veterans Park through 2pm today!
Come on out, the weather's fine so far. 😉
Courses are set for tomorrow's soggy, windy shenanigans in Black Mountain! I wish it were me running these fun courses - FOUR to choose from!
See y'all any time between 10 and 2, and bring a friend!
This dotted brown line is a small erosion gully that goes through the forest. It's a new feature on the Black Mountain Veterans Park orienteering map, and you'll need to find and follow it to get around the courses on Sunday! Hope to see you there!
Literally held together with duct tape and baling wire, the prototype controls are almost ready for Sunday!
Regarding the weather forecast for the meet in Black Mountain on Sunday -- there are two types of people in this world...
It only takes 10 milliseconds for OTIMCON to punch your time, and only 5 seconds for me to demonstrate the motion.
Project Code Name: Digital Daddy (aka OTIMCON)
Competitive, timed orienteering, accurate to the second, is just around the corner!
Thirty days ago, I figured I could build a homemade electronic timing system for my homemade orienteering club, because WHY NOT. The dominant technology is from a company called SPORTIdent in Germany, whose equipment is reliable, ubiquitous, and prohibitively expensive.
After thirty days of staring at a computer into the wee hours, assembling and soldering tiny parts I'd never heard of, using tools I've never touched before, in a programming language I did not know, I have a working prototype.
I claim no personal ingenuity for this, aside from reading and following the directions. This is an Open Source project called OTIMCON (short for Open TIMing CONtrol) and has been made possible by the equally genius and generous orienteer, developer and do-it-your-selfer from Croatia, Stipe Stajp Predanic .
He did (and continues to do) ALL of the technological heavy lifting here, and in fact has practically held my hand this whole time because I, if you recall, am an English major and didn't, prior to the past few weeks, know one whit about electronics. Resistors?
It's not finished, of course, but it's well on its way. These devices will be shrunken, hardened, and expanded over time. The parts list, schematics and source code is available at https://github.com/stajp/otimcon and I am happy to answer any questions because that's what the Free and Open Source Software (and hardware) model and philosophy is all about.
[See separate video post that shows the system in action]
For our friends and neighbors, Carolina Orienteering Klubb, I processed some recent LiDAR data using rapidlasso's LAStools and RouteGadget's karttapullauta. This material, which includes raster and vector files, will hopefully make updating their map of Kings Mountain National Military Park a bit easier!
11 months 3 days ago
Brandon Smith wore my GoPro during his Red course yesterday, but turned on time lapse photography mode instead of video mode. So, we have 1,793 still images of his run instead of a video, which is still pretty neat. These highlights tell part of the story.
Thanks to everyone who came out for today's orienteering meet in Black Mountain!
We had four courses to choose from, from beginner White to expert Red. Folks had great things to say about the courses and the new map (which is WAY better than the old map!)
Runners were gracious to alpha test my new electronic timing system, prototype circuitry and wires hanging in Ziploc bags inside each control flag. A few malfunctioned and one was actually found floating downstream, full of water... but the system works, and I'll be putting the results together soon, along with everyone's GPS follies in the Routegadget.
Baby Blair, pushed in her stroller by orienteering mom Kaitlyn Guyer, completely crushed the White course without even waking up!
Special thanks to Jim Hall for the use of his snazzy fabric orienteering flags and punches, and everyone else who helped put this together, especially those who helped me set and retrieve the controls.
Let's do this again soon!
11 months 5 days ago
Irma gurd, I've been so busy making controls and setting the courses and planning on hanging the controls tonight that I've totally forgotten to say SEE YOU TOMORROW!!
11 months 1 week ago
Good place for a control, right? I mean, it is a mapped feature.
1 year 14 hours ago
Our maps are made this way, using karttapullautin and LAStools!
Nice (but accidental) visualization of building footprints by #karttapullautin for #LiDAR when the building are classified as ground points. This easily happens when lasground is used with the '-wilderness' option for areas with buildings. The steep building walls are then turned into cliffs in the generated map. Karttapullautin is a popular software for making maps for Orienteering runners (picture courtesy of @okansas) ... (-:
1 year 5 days ago
Got into an intense flow state last night, going to bed in the wee hours with a much greater understanding of, and facility with, vector drawing in OpenOrienteering Mapper.
Check out those sweet Bézier curves in the new, work-in-progress version of the UNCA sprint map!
1 year 1 week ago
Hard at play, learning the art of mapping.
Here is a snippet of a test map I produced today using a new workflow. The result is a much crisper, readable map where the purple overprinting symbols aren't lost in the jumble.
This is how we go orienteering in WNC ~~ The "O"nly thing missing is you!
Please Like our page for news and information on WNCOC's frequent goings-on so you can join the fun!
RouteGadget results from this past weekend's O-Meet in Black Mountain is UP!
This excellent little interface(s) is an entertaining and valuable post run analysis tool.
With it, you can replay your own run and (and this is the fun part) compare your routes with others' as a mass start. It can also be quite amusing to see where you really were, versus where you *thought* you were.
WNCOC maintains two separate instances of RouteGadget, the classic style pictured in the screenshot above, and the RG2 interface, which some prefer.
RG1 - wncoc.org/gadget/cgi-bin/reitti.cgi
RG2 - wncoc.org/gadget/rg2
What a GREAT TIME this morning at WNCOC's first open orienteering meet!
We welcomed some n̶e̶w̶c̶o̶m̶e̶r̶s̶ new friends, scurried about the place at "high speed," and thoroughly enjoyed finding actual control flags for once (though the familiar beeps from the GPSO app in our pockets were a welcomed sound which we've grown used to... and rather fond of.)
Thank you to all who participated and helped put this together, especially Mike Guyer for his suggestion of the Black Mountain Veterans Park as a venue, which is AWESOME, by the way.
We will have many more meets here in the future, as well as (hopefully) a permanent course someday.
After two hours hanging controls, printing maps, buying beer and Ziplocs, and finally entering in all the GPS app stuff, it's finally time to sit back and relax because EVERYTHING IS DONE.
See y'all in the morning!
P.S. Don't forget your compass! I have a few to loan if you don't own one.
Working On Mysteries Without Any Clues
... except in orienteering, you do get clues.
For tomorrow's inaugural orienteering meet in Black Mountain, the clue sheet on your map will feature (human-readable) text descriptions in addition to the traditional orienteering hieroglyphics (which describe the location of control points.)
The crayons hanging from each control are how you mark the boxes on your passport to prove you were there.
Please join us at Veterans Park in Black Mountain at 8am for our first ever public orienteering meet. It is FREE and you're invited!
In its characteristic DIY style, WNCOC will be debuting (testing) hand-crafted Stick Tripod Free-standing Control Holders at tomorrow's meet in Black Mountain.
We proudly use only 100% biodegradable, vegan, locally sourced artisinal sticks.
Tidying up and preparing the controls for tomorrow morning's orienteering meet in Black Mountain!
Our 20 homemade controls are collapsible, lightweight, weather resistant, and highly visible (if you're looking in the right place.)
Each will bear the following --
1. Control number -- a number between 31 and 51. This corresponds to a number in parentheses on your passport card and is more of an administrative number than anything else.
2. Polite note -- "Please don't remove, and visit our website by scanning this QR code!"
3. Crayon on a rope -- a random color with which to mark your passport.
I should be working on the map, but instead I'm geeking out watching this slightly overcooked video of these dudes throwing down in the mountains.
Also, we have GOT to get crazy zoot suits with striped socks.
http://www.tabanispartacus.hu/tajfuto/wordpress/ fb event: https://www.facebook.com/events/629749300499367/ music: The Easton Ellises - Ersatz
Popup O-Meet #1
In a huge surprise to even me, WNCOC will hold its first ever public, open orienteering meet THIS SUNDAY at 8am in Black Mountain!
"But, that's just TWO days from now," you say? That's why we call them Popup O-Meets!
This will feature REAL CONTROLS for the first half of the event and controls+GPS for the second.
No smartphones needed which means EVERYONE can participate!
More details to follow in the forthcoming posts and FB event. Stay tuned, friends!
About Our Maps == LiDAR + OpenStreetMap + RouteGadget 's karttapullautin
Unlike traditionally-made orienteering maps that can be very time consuming and expensive to make, our maps are (almost) completely automated. This means we can do more orienteering, more often, and in more places.
While not suitable for competition level events that require copious, hand wrought details, they are detailed and reliable enough* to give us a usable map that's plenty suitable for our purposes -- plus, they're made with lasers. LASERS, people!
Here are some of the maps we've made and used so far.
After a busy few months testing and refining this concept (in a secret underground laboratory,) it's time to bring the WNC Orienteering Club to a wider audience!
Using an Android smartphone app called GPS Orienteering ($6 on Google Play) in conjunction with autogenerated maps from LiDAR and OSM data, we can enjoy the exciting, lifelong sport of orienteering with much less overhead, preparation and expense than before.
Now, instead of placing (and retrieving) control markers in the field, we run in search of "invisible checkpoints" defined by a "GPS bubble." The app on the phone senses your position and goes BEEP BEEP when you step into the zone -- then, you go on to the next checkpoint. The app handles all of the timing and scoring automatically!
WNCOC is not in any way affiliated with this 3rd party app, but it's been working well enough and has been a ton of fun. For iPhone users we have a growing number of loaner Android devices that can be rented per event for a small fee.
Plans for the club's future are exciting...
--- charter as an OUSA club and begin having traditional O-meets with control flags, epunching, competition quality timing, etc.
--- orienteering instruction for beginners
--- work with scouts and JROTC to provide opportunities for obtaining their navigation certifications
--- teach and organize orienteering in schools, interscholastic orienteering league
--- collaborate with our neighboring orienteering clubs like Carolina-OK and Backwoods Orienteering Club to bring more people together
--- huge endurance options for the ultra crowd when the leaves come down, including 6/12/24hr rogaines
Once the club is officially established, and after a couple free meets to introduce the concept, a standard fee schedule and annual club dues will be implemented to support and grow the club over time.
We're excited for you to join us!
In the beginning, our maps were wholly autogenerated from LiDAR and OSM data processed with karttapullautin, and they WORKED.
This map was from an early meet called AB-TechmO Bowl and can be reviewed here -- http://wncoc.org/gadget/cgi-bin/reitti.cgi?act=map&id=20