Orienteering during Lockdown

Whilst regular orienteering events are currently on hold, there are still opportunities to get out there and enjoy the essence of the sport, whether you're a seasoned orienteer looking to hone their skills, a runner seeking an alternative to that cancelled race, or a family looking for something to keep the children entertained.

Permanent Courses 

Permanent Course controlThe club has five permanent courses spread throughout our area. Each has a selection of pre-planned courses making use of the permanent marker posts that you can tackle at a time of your choosing. For most, maps can now be downloaded for you to print at home. See the individual page for each area for more details.


MapRun screenshotMapRun is a free mobile phone app which, having selected a course, will notify you when you're in the correct location for each control (unlike a permanent course, there is no marker on the ground). The club has a back catalogue of MapRun courses available which you can participate in at any time. Most use urban areas with a simplified map which you can either view on your phone or download to print out. Once completed, you can compare your time and route with other participants.

Whether you choose a permanent course or MapRun, please be courteous to other users of the area and make sure you follow the government guidelines, particularly with regard to social distancing.

Next Member Chat: Course Planning

The next member chat will take place on Zoom this Thursday at 8:30pm. There'll be an update on the virtual challenges and we'll announce the details of a new course planning competition. In support of the latter, Terry Smith will be providing an introduction to planning with Condes. Connection details for the meeting can be found in the member's areas on the website or on Facebook.

Lakeside Virtual Challenge

With a last-minute flurry of activity in the Southampton Outdoor Sports Centre Virtual Challenge, we've decided to extend the deadline until the end of this weekend. The courses will remain open beyond then but we'll name the winners of the challenge at that point.

It is, however, time to announce the next challenge and the venue moves to the permanent course at Lakeside Country Park where there are four courses on offer: trail, easy, improver, or plan your own route around all of the controls (not as daunting as it sounds given the size of the area).

Otherwise, the format stays the same. You can obtain a free map from Britsh Orienteering. If you have a mobile phone, you can use the free MapRunF app to track your run (select the course under UK > Southampton > Permanent Courses > Lakeside Country Park) or, if you have a GPS watch, you can upload your track on the MapRun website. Alternatively, record your time and the codes at each control and submit them via email to webmaster [at] socweb.org.

As always, please be courteous to other users of the area and, in particular, keep your distance when passing other people, even if this means having to wait. You can take part any time you like between now and the end of Sunday 19th July. And if you fancy doing something else while you're there, you can always try out the 45 minute MapRun score event around Eastleigh from nearby Fleming Park. Let the competition begin!