Black Creek Park: Orienteering 101

This past weekend we went to our first Rochester Orienteering Club http://roc.us.orienteering.org/ event at Black Creek Park in North Chili West of Rochester.

IMG_4550

We decided to join the Orienteering Club after attending the Winter Festival at Mendon Pond Park back in January. For more on this see the link below:

https://agreenesadventures.wordpress.com/2015/01/29/winterfest/

Luke and I thought it would be a good chance for us to explore the parks/trails where we live and get to know others who enjoy getting out in nature.

IMG_4553

In case you do not know what orienteering is think of a combination of cross country running and an adult scavenger hunt. All participants are given a topiary map of the park with course markers on it and a compass. The goal is to find flag course markers then insert a GPS key to show you have oriented yourself to find that location.

IMG_4554

Along the way you have to make decisions about what terrain you want to cover to get to the next marker quickly. Competitive orienteers will run 6 miles of course trying to beat their best time with at least 20 flag markers from start to finish.

IMG_4555

We are far from prepared for that but arrived in time to do a beginner instruction and the white (easy) orienteering course. Luke was in charge of the map/compass and I had the GPS key.

IMG_4558

It was a beautiful day with a light breeze. The course took us about 30-40 minutes quickly walking  about 1.5 miles with 10 markers. Because of the time of year, the toughest terrain decision we had to make was where to step to avoid being ankle deep in mud. Also finding flags was easier because the trees have not produced leaves yet.

IMG_4560

We learned on the way that we need to bring: sunglasses, hats, shoes that can get muddy, towels, and a change of shoes when we are done.

IMG_4564

Overall it was a great first time learning experience. Now we know we can do the yellow 3-4 mile course. We enjoyed exploring a new park; Black Creek Park has many trails, great facilities, a children’s playground, open meadows, a pond, creek, and allows dogs on leashes.

What are your favorite spring outdoor activities?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s