South Wales Orienteering Club


Call-up - You often need to get to the start area a few minutes before your start time, particularly at the larger events. It gets you ready for the start.

Catching feature - A feature on the map and ground beyond a control that, when reached, lets you know that you have gone too far and the control has been missed. Normally a line feature, such as a path or a stream. All controls on the easier courses will have a catching feature.

Clear - At a Sportident electronic punching event, you must empty your dibber (electronic control card) of previous records at a clear station before you start your course. Someone at the start will normally check that have cleared. Once you have attended a couple of events it becomes second nature.

Closing date - The date entries need to be received by the organisers at events that you need to pre enter. Sometimes there are a number of closing dates. The closer you get to the event the more it costs to enter.The organiser does not want to receive a lot of entries a day or so before a big event. There are only 24 hours in a day.

Clothing dump - A place where you can leave clothes while you run. Likely to be provided at winter events where there is a longish walk to the start.

Collecting feature - A large or recognisable feature on the way to a control that acts as a check that you are on the correct route. The collecting features act as a checklist enabling you to get from one control to the next.

Colour-coded event - The most common type of event, offering a range of courses of different lengths and difficulty. Unlike at a Badge event, any competitor can run any course, irrespective of age and sex. The courses are named after different colours. The courses at the larger SWOC colour-coded range from yellow, the easiest to brown, the llongest and most difficult. In between we have orange, light-green, green and blue.

Compass - The device for orientating yourself. Very useful in orienteering! The red needle on a compass always points in the direction of the magnetic north pole,( i.e. up the map).

CompassSport Cup and Trophy - These annual events are the most important inter-club competitions. There are two rounds, a regional heat in March, followed by a final in May. The Cup is for big clubs and the Trophy is for small clubs like SWOC. We held the Trophy from 1999 to 2002. Rules, if you are really interested are on the BOF site.

Contour - The brown lines on a map linking points of equal height. On orienteering maps it is normal to have either 2.5m or 5m contours.

Contouring - Choosing a route, which keeps to the same height and thereby following a contour on the map. Not as easy as it sounds.

Control - A point on your course that you have to visit, marked with a red or purple circle on your map. At each control, you should see a brightly coloured kite, a unique code in big letters and a punch, either manual or electronic.

Control Card - A card carried by each competitor at events not using electronic punching which is manually punched at each control to verify the that you have found the correct control.

Control Code - Letters or numbers on a control which enables you to verify that they are at the correct control.

Control Descriptions - A list given to each competitor of the controls they have to find. The list briefly describes each control feature in order and the control code. At major events, pictorial control descriptions, in standard format are used. See the link on the home page. You can often download the control descriptions from the organising club's website prior to an event.

Controller - One of the three main officials at an orienteering event. The controller oversees the event, and is responsible for ensuring that the courses are fair, and that the whole competition is organised in accordance with the rules of the sport. In other words the referee. The controller is usually the most experienced official, and normally comes from a club other than the organising club.

Croeso - The Welsh multi-day event held about every fourth year during August. The next event is being held in 2004 around Brecon. Excellent website. Some SWOC members will be closely involved in organising this event. Croeso Web site www.croesomultiday.org.uk.

Cross-country - The normal form of orienteering event, in which competitors visit controls in a prescribed sequence. The fastest competitor wins.

Crossing Point - A specific location marked on the map at which a line feature, typically a wall, road or fence, may be, or must be,crossed.

C1, C2, C3, C4, C5 - Official BOF event type and grading. C stands for a Cross-country event, whilst N stands for a night event and S for a score event. The number refers to the importance of the event:

  • C1 - The British Championship or the JK
  • C2 - National Event
  • C3 - Badge event
  • C4 - Colour-Coded event
  • C5 - Local event

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