Whistler orienteering

Try Orienteering!

Welcome to the Whistler Orienteering webpage, providing information specific to events and clinics in the Whistler region.

Upcoming Events


2010 
June 20 Sunday Spruce Grove Field house 9:00am - Introductory Clinic - Rocks, boulders and other hard things
June 28 Monday Spruce Grove Field house 6:30pm - Introductory Clinic - Streams, swamps, and other wet things
July 9 - 12   Barebones Festival See information below


Hello Whistler Locals!

There's a big orienteering event happening in Whistler July 9 – 12 and we’d love for you to be part of it. We’ve created this webpage to give you all the info you need to take part.

The Barebones Orienteering Festival is an annual orienteering event in Western Canada. It’s been all over Alberta, in Whitehorse, in Cranbrook and in 2010 it’s in Whistler with a couple events in Vancouver as well. Over 300 orienteers from more than 14 countries coming to run in Whistler's parks and forests.

Are you interested in learning more about orienteering? Are you looking for a new way to explore and play in Whistler’s forest and parks? Are you a bit tired of running the same trails over and over? Are you looking to try an activity that challenges both your body and your head? Are you an adventure racer wanting to improve your navigational skills? …… If any of these apply to you then try orienteering, the sport for people who love to be active in the outdoors. We promise that you’ll discover new parts of Whistler’s parks and that you’ll see the forest in a whole new light. And you’ll learn a few things about map reading and navigation too.

Introductory Clinics

  • Sunday June 20 at 9:00am - Rocks, boulders, and other hard things

  • Monday June 28 at 6:30pm - Streams, swamps, and other wet things

We are organizing two clinics to teach the basics of orienteering and give locals all the skills they need to take part in the Barebones races. Both clinics will be at the Spruce Grove Field House. These 90 minute clinics will cover map reading and navigation, route choice and race strategies. Clinics involve a short presentation and an informal orienteering event. Cost is $10 per clinic. Come to one or both. To register, just show up with $10 and be ready for some trail running and perhaps a little bush-whacking. Good running shoes and old running clothes recommended.

Barebones Festival

The Barebones Festival is one of Canada's longest running orienteering events. This year Barebones is attracting over 300 international participants to Whistler, ranging in age from 10 years old to over 80, from as far away as New Zealand, Switzerland, Norway, Sweden, Great Britain, and even Vancouver. We'd love you to be part of it too.

Click here to register Online:  https://www.zone4.ca/register.asp?id=1211

 

Barebones is made up of six races. You are welcome at any or all of the races. Here’s the barebones schedule at a glance:

July 9 3:00pm Lost Lake Long distance
July 10 8:00am Whistler Village Sprint
July 11 9:00am Brandywine Middle distance
July 12 9:00am Nester's Hill (Myrtle Philip School) Middle distance
July 12 11:00am Whistler Mountain (Roundhouse) BBQ social
July 13 1:00pm Vancouver - Stanley Park Long distance
July 14 9:00am Vancouver - UBC Sprint

 

Each race will have a variety of courses with categories for all abilities – and you can go individually or as a group. At the races we’ll have a special area for locals to meet and sign-in. Look for the tent with the “welcome Whistler locals” sign.

We would love for you to register on-line for Barebones as it allows up to get the best handle on how many maps to print, but registration on the day is available as well. If you register online, there will be a small discount.

CATEGORIES

All Barebones races have “championship” and “open” categories. The “open” categories are designed for people who are relatively new to orienteering and those who want to go out in a group. (See the FAQ section below for info about the championship categories).

Each Barebones event will have the following five Open categories (TR = technical rating) plus the Adventure runner category:

 

Category

Description

Best suited for

Open-TR 1

Beginner level. Course tends to follow linear features such as trails, fences, etc.

Kids under 12. Kids under 15 with little or no orienteering experience. Family groups with kids under 12.

Open-TR2

Beginner Plus level. Course tends to follow linear features but with some basic route choice options. Limited use of contour and other natural features.

Beginner teens and adults. Family groups with kids over 15.

Open-TR3

Intermediate level. Route choice options. Use of contour and other natural features. Use of catching features.

Adults with a bit of orienteering experience and an adventurous spirit.

Open-TR4

Advanced level. Technical orienteering. Route choice options with use of contour and natural features. Avoids physically challenging and highly detailed areas of the map.

Adults who have orienteered before and have an understanding of techniques such as relocation and moving in a bearing.

Open-TR5

Expert level. Physically and technically challenging.

Experienced adults

Open -Adventure Runner

Beginner Plus level. Course tends to follow linear features but with some basic route choice options. Limited use of contour and other natural features.

The adventure runner category is designed to be physically challengin, but the navigation required is relatively simple. It’s a great course for teen and adult runners who are trying orienteering for the first time.

WHAT TO EXPECT AT EACH EVENT

WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF RACES?


There are 3 different race types in orienteering: Sprint, Middle and Long. Here’s a description of each:

Sprint
A shorter race in which the fastest time is around 15 minutes. Sprints are often held in urban environments (such as university campus) or open forest. The navigation tends to be easier but intense concentration and rapid decision making is important along with fast running.

Middle Distance
A race in which the fastest time is around 30-45 minutes. The emphasis is on accurate navigation. The navigation is challenging and there are many checkpoints.

Long Distance
A race in which the fastest time is around 70-100 minutes. The emphasis is on endurance and route choice. The courses are physically demanding, and there is lots of route choices.

REGISTRATION

Click here to register Online:  https://www.zone4.ca/register.asp?id=1211

You have two registration options. You can register on the day at the “welcome whistler locals” tent or you can pre-register on-line up until noon on July 8th. On-line registration saves you some time at the event and it does help out the organizers to know how many maps to print so please do consider that option. And if your register on-line we’ll cover the rental cost of the SportIdent timing stick.

Costs per event:

Adult $15
Youth aged 10 – 20 $10
Kids under 10 $5
Extra maps $5
SportIdent timing stick rental $2
Compass rental $2

 

To enter to run as a group. Register the first person (the oldest person in the group) and pay an extra $5 for each additional map that you would like (usually one per person in the group). You will also need one SportIdent timing stick for the group. And you can rent a compass for $2. You will need to leave a piece of collateral (piece of ID or car keys) for the SI unit and compass.

Membership
Your entry fee includes your membership in the Greater Vancouver Orienteering Club. This membership is mandatory for insurance purposes.

Waiver
You will need to sign a waiver at the “welcome whistler locals” tents. We’ll have copies there, but you can also print it off and bring it with you (http://www.barebones.ca/Barebones%202010/Barebones%202010%20Waiver.pdf).

DETAILS FOR EACH OF THE BAREBONES RACES

 

Day 1

Friday July 9

Where

Lost Lake Park

Place

Meet at the tent with the “welcome whistler locals” sign near the beach at Lost Lake

Time

Check-in between 2:00 and 2:15, pre-race clinic at 2:30 pm then we’ll go together to the start. It’s about 5 minute walk from the registration to the start.

Latest finish time

You must report back to the finish within 3 hours after your start. Please wear a watch.

Type of terrain

Forested terrain with significant path network. Hilly. Forest is variable in terms of density.

Type of race

This is a “long” distance race - emphasis on endurance & route choices.

Awards

There will be an award for first place in each of the open categories. Award ceremony will be around 6:30 at Lost Lake.

Map info

Map scale is 1:7,500 with 4m contours

Other

Bring food for a picnic after your race and hang out at Lost Lake. Or purchase some food from Alpine Café at the Lost Lake concession.

 

Day2

Saturday July 10

Where

Whistler Village

Place

Meet at the tent with the “welcome whistler locals” sign by the gazebo by the Bread Garden/Gap/Caramba’s/Mountain Club

Time

Check-in between 7:30 and 7:45 am, pre-race clinic at 8:00 am then we’ll go together to the start. (just about 50m away)

Latest finish time

You must report back to the finish within 1 hour after your start. Please wear a watch.

Type of terrain

An urban race through Whistler Village.

Type of race

This is a “sprint” race - high speed and high concentration go hand in hand.

Awards

There will be an award for first place in each of the open categories. Award ceremony will be at around 10:00 am at the Gazebo.

Map info

Map scale is 1:4,000 with 2.5m contours

Other

Urban orienteering is quite a different experience that forest orienteering. The navigation tends to be easier, but you can also move faster so it is really exciting, great fun, and just as challenging.

 

Day 3

Sunday July 11

Where

Brandywine Falls

Place

Meet at the tent with the “welcome whistler locals” sign at the registration area. See directions below

Time

Check-in between 9:00 and 9:15 am, pre-race clinic at 9:30 am then we’ll go together to the start. (just about 100m away)

Latest finish time

You must report back to the finish within 2 hours after your start. Please wear a watch.

Type of terrain

Lots of rocks and ponds, a few trails. Forest is a mix of quite fast sections and very slow areas created by rocky ground and/or thick undergrowth. Wonderful forest - if you've never been off-trail in Brandywine forest then you should do this race and discover this wonderful place.

Type of race

This is a “middle” distance race - the emphasis is on detailed navigation while moving quickly through the forest.

Parking instructions and direction to get to the registration tent

Parking is on the Cal-Cheak Forestry Service Road.
From the parking area, it's a 15-20 minute walk to the registration tent.


Directions to parking from Whistler:
There is no left turn from Highway 99 onto the Cal-Cheak forestry service road, therefore you must drive all the way south to Brandywine Falls day use area, turn around there, and head back north, as follows:

  • From Whistler Village, drive south 17km on Highway 99 to Brandywine Falls day use area. Turn left into the parking lot.
  • Return to the Highway 99 and drive north 4.2km (passing the competition map on your right). Turn right off the highway onto the Cal-Cheak FSR. You will notice sign posts for Cal-Cheak campsite and the Whistler Bungee jump.
  • DrDrive 0.7km along a dirt road and park well off the road, in the gravel pit area on the left of the road.

Directions from parking to the assembly area (registration):

Allow 15-20 minutes to walk from parking to assembly area.
From the parking follow flagging tape through the Cal-Cheak campsite, crossing Callaghan Creek on the pedestrian suspension bridge and continue along the hiking trails.  This is a scenic hike, though parts of the trail have a lot of roots to step over. The walk is generally flat, mostly along the side of the river.

Awards:

We won’t be giving awards in the open classes today, but we’ll have a treat for each participant.

Map info

Map scale is 1:10,000 with 4m contours

Other

Bring some snacks with you, we won’t have a food vendor on site today.

 

Day 4

Monday July 12

Where

Nester's Hill (aka Cut Yer Bars)

Place

Meet at the tent with the “welcome whistler locals” sign at the registration area besides the Myrtle Philip school.

Note: we will not be allowed to park at Myrtle Philip school. Please arrive on foot, or on a bike, or on the bus. If you drive, please park in Day Lot 4 and walk 1.2km along Lorimer.

Time

Check-in between 8:00 and 8:15 am, pre-race clinic at 8:30 am then we’ll go together to the start. (just about 50m away)

Latest finish time

You must report back to the finish within 90 minutes after your start. Please wear a watch.

Type of terrain

Steep hill rising from the school fields. Fabulous and fun rocks & forest on top of the hill. Fairly dense trail network.

Type of race

This is a “middle” distance race - emphasis is on navigation and moving quickly.

 

Awards

There will be an award for first place in each of the open categories. Award ceremony will be at around 2:30 pm in the Roundhouse.

Map info

Map scale is 1:4,000 with 2.5m contours

Other

This event was originally planned to be a race up on Whistler mountain, but the snow pack is too deep still.

This event is optionally a three-person relay or an individual race. We are suggesting that less experienced orienteers do the individual race. The individual race will have the same course as Leg 1 of the relay. If you wish to run in the relay, create a team of three people - and check details on the "Race Info" page on the full Barebones 2010 website.

There will be a mass start of all individual runners and all Relay Leg 1 runners at 9:00am. It is an unusual and very exciting experience to run in a Mass-start orienteering race. Not to be missed!

BBQ social

@ The Roundhouse on Whistler Mountain

We are having a big BBQ at the Roundhouse at 1:30pm. You can purchase tickets for the BBQ on the on-line registration system before July 7th at noon. Prices are $20 for adults and $15 for anyone under 20. We won’t be able to sell any BBQ tickets after that date, but of course you can still purchase food up at the Roundhouse.

Time

BBQ begins at 1:30pm at the Roundhouse

Gondola details

Many Whistler locals already have passes to get them up the Gondola, so we are leaving it up to you to make your way to the Roundhouse at your own expense. We do have some discounted Gondola passes available for purchase on-line up until July 7th at noon ($30 for adults, $25 for 11-20 youth and $15 for kids 3-10). Tickets must be picked up at the Nester's Hill race on the morning of July 12th.

 

 

Day 5

Tuesday July 13

Where

Vancouver – Stanley Park:

Place

Meet at the tent with the “on-the-day registration” sign in the assembly area is at Lumbermen's Arch in Stanley Park, 200 meters north of the Aquarium (see the Tourist map at http://vancouver.ca/parks/info/publications/StanleyParkMapGuide2009.pdf and  check inset "B - around the aquarium"). Park on the roadway west of Lumberman's Arch.

Time

Check-in between 12:00 – 12:15, pre-race clinic at 12:30 then we’ll go together to the start. (about 500m away)

Latest finish time

You must report back to the finish within 2 hours after your start. Please wear a watch.

Type of terrain

A mix of forest and urban park

Type of race

This is a long “sprint” race

Awards

There will be an award for first place in each of the open categories. Award ceremony will be at around 4:00pm at Lumbermen's Arch

Map info

Map scale is 1:5,000 with 5m contours

Other

There are toilets and a concession at Lumbermen's Arch.

 

Day 6

Wednesday July 14:

Where

Vancouver – UBC

Place

Meet at the tent with the “on-the-day registration” sign in the assembly area at McInnes Field. Parking is adjacent to the assembly area in the "North Parkade".". Cost is $1.75/30 minutes (ouch) to a maximum of $13. Turn off Westbrook Mall into Student Union Blvd. To reach the assembly area from the parkade, head south-east across Student Union Blvd to the large grassy field.  Alternative parking is available for a flat-fee of $5.50 at Westbrook Mall and Agronomy Road, by the "Thunderbird Parkade". If you park here, you must walk north along Westbrook Mall to the assembly area.

Time:

Check-in between 8:30 – 8:45, pre-race clinic at 9:00 then we’ll go together to the start. (just a few metres away)

Latest finish time:

You must report back to the finish within 90 minutes after your start. Please wear a watch.

Type of terrain

A university campus

Type of race

This is a long-ish “sprint” race

Awards:

There will be an award for first place in each of the open categories. Award ceremony will be at around 11:30 at the assemble area.

Map info

Map scale is 1:5,000

Other

The Student Recreation Centre next to the assembly area has toilets,  free showers and change rooms available

 


Frequently Asked Questions

What should I wear?
If you are orienteering in the forest (Lost lake, Brandywine, Whistler Mountain) your best bet it to wear some long running pants or tights to avoid getting your legs scratched up as you move through the forest. For that same reason you might want to wear a long sleeve shirt, but you’ll see lots of people wearing short-sleeve technical shirts as well. For the Whistler Village race, there will be lots of people wearing shorts in this urban environment. Running shoes work well. Bring your sun screen. Wear a watch.

Do I need a compass?
You don’t need a compass and some world champions have run without them. However most experienced orienteers do carry a compass which they use to make sure they are holding their map the right way around. We will be doing a short clinic before each Barebones race to show this important technique. We will also have some compasses available to rent for a small fee (and you’ll need to leave some ID or car keys as collateral).

What’s an SI stick?
This is the small electronic unit that you carry with you and insert temporarily in the electronic box at each checkpoint to register that you have been there. At the finish line, you download the information from your SI stick to get your final time and the time that it took you between each checkpoint. It’s fun to compare this info with your friends to see who had the fastest route choices. You’ll rent your SI stick for a small fee and return at the end of your race.

 

Where can I buy compass? SI stick? Other gear?
There isn't much orienteering-specific gear to buy, but what there is can be found online at the Canadian Orienteering Store

I have lots of orienteering experience, and I would like to compete in the championship categories. Can I do that? Yes you will need to sign up in your age category on-line before July 1st. Sign up at this site: https://www.zone4.ca/register.asp?id=817 and find the registration info that you need here: http://www.barebones.ca/Barebones%202010/barebones_2010_registration.shtml. After July 1st registration online is only available for Open categories.

Do I have to run?
You can go at whatever speed you would like. You’ll see both runners and walkers orienteering – but at the competitive levels, it’s all about finishing the course is the shortest amount of time so you will see lots of speedy runners out there.

Where can I learn more about orienteering on-line?
Check out the “try it” page on the Canadian Orienteering Federation website > http://www.orienteering.ca/get-involved/try-it/

Who can I contact with questions?
Contact Charlotte MacNaughton: charlotte AT barebones DOT ca