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Course of the Year 2013: Submit your suggestions!


What was the best orienteering course of 2013? Last year’s winner had  some great technical orienteering in Portugal – in 2011 the WOC middle distance in France took the first place and the year before a very special Jukola relay won. Which course will take the prestigious top spot this year? YOU are the one to decide – first by submitting suggestions – and then by voting.

The search for the course of the year  will be fun for sure, as it was last year! The rules are simple: Suggest a course from a competition or training in 2013, and state the reason why you think this course deserves to be “The course of the Year 2013″. The best among all the suggestions will be chosen – and there will be a voting process among the readers of “World of O” in order to name “The course of the year 2013″. And please, please, please state the reason for your suggestion!

3500 Euro worth of prizes for YOU

Prizes from sponsors make it more fun to be in on the suggestions and voting. This year we have more sponsors and finer prizes than ever – with a total value of 3500 Euro. We hope this means more and better suggestions & a lot of interactivity from YOU! The 10 sponsors this year are  Andalucia O-Meeting in Spain February 14th-16th, MOC in Italy March 13th-15th, Bergen Sprint Camp in Norway January 31st-February 2nd, 3+3 Sälen in Sweden June 27th-29th, Ilves-3 in Estonia May 2nd-4th, OOCup or Bubo Cup in Slovenia at the end of July/start of August, Orievents training camp/NAOM in Portugal in January,  Portugal O-meeting in Portugal March 1st-4th, the North Americal Champs in Canada October 10th-13th, and 3 days of Trenches in Italy May 31st-June 2nd. See all details about the sponsors & prizes below – to me all of them are tempting!

Use the comments below, and submit either

  1. The course which in your opinion is the best course you run in 2013 yourself!
  2. The best course you set this year as a course-setter.
  3. The overall best course you have seen/heard about in 2013

Most course-setters surely have to make some compromises, so finding the perfect one is probably not possible. Still, it is interesting to see which is the best course you run or set in 2013! Here are my choices for 2011.

Starting point

To provide you with a starting point, I’ve picked out a few very different candidates for you based on maps and courses I have seen in omaps.worldofo.com and comments on various webpages:

  • To be a bit controversial, I put up the WOC sprint final course at the top of this page as one suggestion. All of you might not agree that this is the best course of the year – but it is definitely one of the courses which have been worked hardest on – including a transformation of the terrain from a “boring”, small Finnish town to an area with lots of interesting route choice options.
  • The WOC long final should always be considered for the course of the year – in my opinion. But can the course this year compete against the competition? I spent a lot of time with the course setter – and many hours with the map & GPS-data to analyze the course – and especially the women’s course had a lot of nice tricks which worked very well.
  • But WOC isn’t everything – there are many interesting courses on all levels out there. The most interesting course I ran in 2013 is the OOCup Ultimate course (without paths) on Day 4 this year. Extremely challenging with a good variation between leg lengths and challenges which at least fooled me into making more mistakes than I’ve done in years.
  • And OK – the Pachacutec race in MacchPicchu or the Glenelg curiosity race at the Gale Crater, Mars will surely not win the prize for the course of the year 2013 – but don’t let it scare you away from sharing some of the more obscure courses you have seen (or run) this year.

I am sure you have a lot of better suggestions than the one I gave above – this is just a starting point to see the wide variety of candidates there are out there. Submit your suggestions now!


The following rules are given for “The course of the Year 2013″.

  • The course must have been run in competition or training in 2013.
  • Suggestions are submitted as a comment to this post – including link to the map with course in a quality which is good enough for the readers to understand the course and the challenges involved. Please add information about location/date if that is not clear from the link provided. Also include which sponsor prize you are interested in if you win.
  • You must give a reason for why you think this course deserves to be named “The course of the Year 2013″ (or why it is the best course you run/set this year). All reasons are valid. Examples can for example be “varied orienteering challenges”, “extremely technical orienteering”, “high fun-factor”, “fantastic map”, “spectacular orienteering”, “fantastic nature” – a combination of these – or a totally different reason. To get all the way to the top you should probably have a combination of reasons…
  • The course may be any discipline – e.g. a long distance, a middle distance, a sprint distance. It may also be a technical training course – like e.g. a corridor orienteering exercise.
  • There will be a voting process among the readers of “World of O” in order to name “The course of the year 2013″. This is your second chance to win sponsor prizes!

Prizes from our Sponsors

Prizes from our Sponsors always makes it more fun! There will be a prize for the first one suggesting the course which ends up becoming “The course of the Year 2013″, and prizes drawn among the ones suggesting and voting. All prizes are transferable to other persons (you don’t have to travel yourself).

Event sponsor: Andalucia-O-Meeting – February 14th -16th 2014
  • Prize offered: Competition Package for 2 persons – including entry to 4 AOM events in 3 days, 5 nights in 4**** Barcelo Punta Umbria Beach Resort and a 4-map training package before or after the event. Value about 640 Euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • After 4 very nice years in Canos De Meca (Barbate), AOM moves to Punta Umbria, Huelva province, West of Andalucia! New terrains, maps, accommodations and, as usual, high level competitions in a very mild climate! More info at aom2014.com

Event sponsor: MOC 2014 – March 13th-15th
  • Prize offered: Competition, training and hotel package for one person: Entry for one person at the 10th anniversary of MOC Mediterranean Orienteering Championship in Tuscany + MOC sprint training camp in Venice district + accommodation half boards for 7 nights. Value about 500 euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • You are welcome in MOC- Tuscany 2014! The Mediterranean Open Championship Orienteering 2014 is organized March 13th – March 15th. Final stage in Florence, UNESCO city. Orienteering with a lot of fun. Great events with world class runners! Read more at www.orienteering.it and www.facebook.com/pwtorienteering.

Event sponsor: Bergen Sprint Camp – January 31st-February 2nd 2014
  • Prize offered: 2 packages – each consisting of 2 complete Bergen Sprint Camp packages: Entry for all 4 races + training Friday morning + Saturday evening program consisting of presentation held by World Champion Mårten Boström and dinner. Value about 400 Euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • For the 5th time in a row, BSC is held in the city center of Bergen, Norway. We provide all participants with challenging courses, good maps and interesting analysis of the sessions – hoping to improve the sprint orienteering technique for everyone. See more at Sprint-Camp.blogspot.no – including all courses and analysis from previous editions of BSC.

Event sponsor: 3+3 Sälen – June 27th-29th 2014
  • Prize offered: 2 BIG training+competition packages – each for 2 persons consisting of: Entry for the complete 3+3 2014 competition week + maps for 8 different trainings during the training camp + TUBE from Bagheera from Fjällmaraton Sälen. Value about 380 Euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • 3+3 is a 3 Day orienteering event organized by Malungs OK in Sälen. The event is famous for its open landscape above the “tree-level” and good drawn maps and excellent combination of orienteering and holidays. The 2014 edition returns to the Hundfjället terrain made famous during O-Ringen 2008. More at 3plus3.se

Event sponsor: Ilves-3 – May 2nd – 4th 2014
  • Prize offered: 2 packages – each for 2 persons – consisting of: Accommodation for 2 nights in a nice guesthouse (including breakfast) and start fee for the 3 Day competition Ilves-3 in Estonia. Value about 350 Euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • Ilves-3 is an awesome 3-day competition weekend on relevant terrain for WOC 2017 in Estonia. Welcome to everybody – from kids to veterans. Get to know Estonian orienteering! More to come at OKIlves.ee

Event sponsor: OOCup / Bubo Cup 2014 – July/August 2014
  • Prize offered: 2 packages – each for 2 people – consisting of: Your choice of full entry to either complete 5 day Bubo cup competition or complete 5 days OOCup competition + small Slovenia training package consisting of up to 3 training maps. Value up to 300 euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • OOCup is a 5 Day orienteering event organized annually in Slovenia. The event is famous for its Karst orienteering and excellent combination of orienteering and holidays. Bubo cup is the younger brother of OOCup – offering the same excellent orienteering experiences and quality you are used to from OOCup – but with a more relaxed attitude at the events. You can even manage both races with some rest in between. Bubo Cup is organized from July 24th – 28th 2014 – OOCup from August 1st – 5th 2014. More at www.bubocup.com/ and oocup.com

Event sponsor: Orievents /Training Camps, Alto Alentejo, Portugal
  • Prize offered: Competition + training package for 2 persons, consisting of: Entry for NAOM 2014 – January 25th/26th 2014 + training camp (6 trainings) + 3 days of accommodation in half board at Castelo de Vide Hotel. Value about 270 euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • Orievents / GD4C’s Training Camps “Alto Alentejo” are an excellent training opportunity for Orienteering of good quality during the winter. Start the new season in training camps in Alto Alentejo, Portugal! More at www.naom.pt and about the training camp at Orievents.

Event sponsor: Portugal O-Meeting – March 1st-4th 2014
  • Prize offered: 2 packages – each one for 2 persons – consisting of: Entry fees for the 4 stages of POM 2014, model events, night sprint, trail-O and regional dinner. Value about 260 euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • Portugal O’ Meeting is already a well-known established international event, normally reaching the highest average points in World Ranking Events, excluding the World Championships. 2014’s Edition will be held nearby Serra da Estrela, on low grounds but with high density of rocky elements in all stages. More info at pom.pt/en/

Event sponsor: North American Orienteering Championships 2014 – October 10th-13th 2014
  • Prize offered: A full NAOC2014 Package for 1 person – transferable to other person. Including all three races (sprint, middle, long), accomodation (hardfloor or camping), all model maps, all training maps, food (3 hot breakfast, 3 hot dinners including banquet),transport to and from airport. Value approximately 200 Euro.
  • This biennial event is the largest and the premiere orienteering event in North America. With national team spots on the line, the best in North America will be there. The host town Arnprior, just outside Canada’s National Capital – Ottawa, is situated on the stunning Ottawa river and we are working together to bring you the best in orienteering and more. Expect the best that North America has to offer and get ready to take control as Orienteering Ottawa welcomes the world from October 10th to 13th, 2014! More at www.naoc2014.ca

Event sponsor: 3 days of Trenches 2014 – May 31st-June 2nd 2014
  • Prize offered: 3 packages – each for 2 people – consisting of: Entry for 3 competitions, sprint, middle WRE and long WRE. A full package of training maps on WOC 2014 training terrains + a shirt for the event. Value about 200 euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • The “3 days of Trenches” competitions will be held on 31st May, 1st June and 2nd June 2014 between Trentino and Veneto. Many national teams will use these competitions as final selection races for WOC 2014 so there should be very strong fields. 2014 is a special year for the Asiago plateau because it is the Centenary since the beginning of the First World War. On the Middle and Long terrain all runners will cross a lot of trenches, military buildings and caves used 100 years ago. It will be possible to visit many historical sites. More at the event’s Facebook page: facebook.com/3days2014

About Jan Kocbach

Jan Kocbach is the founder of WorldofO.com - taking care of everything from site development to writing articles, photography and analysis.

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  1. I suggest POM day 3, the sprint in the mountain city Monsanto. Great sprint in spectecular terrain.


  2. I suggest WOC middle qualifier for its technical terrain and nice courses, a shame that the final didnt go in that area


    Intrested in the bergen sprint camp price!

  3. I suggest WOC middle final. It was a really nice, challenging and technical orienteering in an outstanding terrain + a nice competition to follow for the spectators.


    OOcup is interesting for me.

  4. Great orienteering in Bukovac Sungerski this summer in Croatia; two different contours intervals and lot of different techniques, from very steep to totally flat terrain and partsin a detailed karst terrain in between! Great course


    (Andalucia is an interesting price :) )

  5. Marcus Millegård

    The swedish ultralong championships this year offered a real challenge and is the best course I ran this year:

    A lot of variety and challenging orienteering and routchoices.

    I did however run a lot of nice races. Swedish long distance and OOcup day 4 to mention some special.

    One race I regret that I did not run was the swedish south regional champs in Fårö, Gotland:

    • I remember the Swedish Champs Ultralong well (Omaps: http://omaps.worldofo.com/?id=81161) – some great orienteering, I even made an analysis of some of the legs, but I can’t seem to find it now. Such a course must be mentally exhausting to run.

      The Swedish south regional champs also looks great (I finally found it in omaps here http://omaps.worldofo.com/?id=91731 ), although I got the feeling that it is more the terrain than the course that is very special?

      And yes, OOCup Day 4 was epic:) – BTW I guess I forgot to post the GPS-analysis

  6. here are my suggestions

    1- The course which in your opinion is the best course you run in 2013 yourself:
    – dificult to choose, but this night training in Peguerinos was great.

    2- The best course you set this year as a course-setter:
    -1st sprint stage of Iberian Championship in Gouveia. Begining too tricky and then some good route choices.

    3- The overall best course you have seen/heard about in 2013.
    the 2nd stage of Sprint the Bay looks really fun

    • MOC 2014 prize would be fun

    • Thanks for your suggestions, Mariana! Peguerinos looks great – on my list to visit some time. The course in itself does maybe not look that special, but I am sure it was a great experience to run it!

      I like the sprint area in Gouveia – looks like a very nice area for sprint were you can give the runners challenges nearly on every leg. Good work!

  7. I suggest super fun training course from Ukraine made by Pavlo Ushkvarok!

    Some addition:
    The course is really special and unusual. Nice map design. Very good idea especially for youngsters. Well organized event.

  8. Hei,

    My suggestion is JWOC 2013 sprint M20.
    Link: http://www.jwoc2013.cz/upload/live/JWOC2013_sprint_M20.jpg

    For the first look, it seems not so complicated, but to run, it was really challanging and physically tough too.

    p.s. OO-Cup or Portugal O-Meeting is my interest.

    • Thanks! Looks like the course setter got as much out of the area as possible – and that is all you can achieve as a course setter. Too many “dead” areas to get all the way to the top I think, but we’ll see…

  9. Siegfried Bakelants

    I suggest WOC sprint final (http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=88857)
    Because this is the beginning of the Belgians in orienteering! Yannick Michiels gave Belgium the best result ever in a WOC and more Belgians will follow the next years and do even better!

    my interest: MOC

    Keep up the nice work!

    • Thanks! An easy one – I even mentioned it in the introductions :-) And congratulations to the new Belgian elite runner – I’m excited to see Yannick working his way to the top in sprint orienteering.

  10. Hej!

    I suggest the Antalya Open 5-days long race in Selge, i was there and it was just funtastic terrain!

    Or Moc in Matera! I enjoyed a lot also there.. really tricky and narrow streets..

    Prizes i prefer are: OriEvents, POM or Andalucia O-Meeting

    • The 3rd day of Antalya 5-days was fantastic! I was there (but didn’t run – just walked/jogged around in the forest and filmed other people) – and it was really epic! There were also some interesting route choices in there. Here is a video I took from the women’s winner http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cx3DgZaGVm4

      Matera is legendary! I was there some years ago – and I really want to go back! This particular course was also very nice. I even made a RunningWild of it where you can try your route choice against Thiery Gueorgiou – see here: https://twitter.com/worldofo/statuses/319363814636261376

      Thanks for two great suggestions!

  11. I suggest this course from Norwegian Champs in (ultra)long distance:


    Real orienteering for real orienteerers;-)

  12. I really enjoyed the first stage of O-ringen this year. Awesome terrain, tough orienteering and some nice long legs. It was really good to have a big competition in this kind of terrain! http://www.gustavbergman.se/doma/show_map.php?user=Gustav&map=1384

    I also really liked the Stockholm District Championships Long Distance this year. Really nice technical terrain, and a course that really used the area in a very good way. http://www.gustavbergman.se/doma/show_map.php?user=Gustav&map=1446

    And last, but not least, I think the 25mannakorten WRE is worth a mention. It was really cool: usual technical Stockholm terrain, but a big burned area that completely changed the forest, and made it really tricky and enjoyable! Also a good course that lured you into high speed the first controls, and then became a lot trickier before you had to speed up again towards the end. http://www.gustavbergman.se/doma/show_map.php?user=Gustav&map=1487

    (Prize: AOM)

    • Three great suggestions, Gustav. The O-Ringen terrain looks very special – I didn’t have time to have a proper look at it earlier. It also looks like the course setter has managed to have a nice balance between long legs with real route choice options and short tricky legs. A worthy suggestions!

      DM Stockholm looks like a more traditional course (with mostly straight routes as the fastest) – although I agree that the area is used in a good way.

      And finally the 25-mannakorten was a great course – and a fantastic experience to run there (although there has been some controversy about the map – that doesn’t take anything away from the course). I also liked the change in speed and rhythm between the fast parts and the tricky parts – I was fooled multiple times by the course setter…

  13. JWOC Middle Final
    Qualifications and final on same map, but with different concept of the race. Qualifications started with fast part and then in second part course setter kicked out all unprepared runners in tricky part.
    Finals started on even more trickier part, controls somewhere between many big stones. Continued with fast part and then at the end again same thing as in Q. Both course and terrain were amazing.

    Bubo Cup stage 4
    Unofficial name of NW part of the map is “Total Brutal”. I think that describes everything.

    OO Cup stage 5
    Ski-lift to the start, nice view and then great course and terrain. I really liked it.
    Fast first part and then “downhill” to tricky second part of the course that was great. Tricky RC’s, small details, nice forest. I think everyone who took part on this stage can agree with me.
    Also stage 4 what Jan suggested was great.

    Prize: Portugal O-Meeting

    • The JWOC middle was extremely tricky, yes (see my story about the race here http://news.worldofo.com/2013/07/03/jwoc-middle-final-maps-and-results-3/). I think it was a great course in a fantastic area – but it maybe misses a longer leg with real route choice options to change the rhythm for the runners? For the men’s course, I think for example a route choice leg from number 3 to somewhere close to number 6 would have given the course a bit more middle distance character while still keeping enough tricky controls (I know you have the rhythm change with controls 9-11 in the fast terrain, but still I think a long leg belongs in a middle distance course). There might be things related to the TV-production which didn’t allow for this though – anyway the course was great and well deserves to be on the list.

      Your two other suggestions were both great races (which I both raced – but in the Ultimate class which made it another degree more challenging:). Both worthy suggestions – although I think that as a long distance course to fight for the “Course of the Year”, the Bubo-cup course could have tried to introduce some more longer legs with route choices. But for the runners I am sure it was more fun exactly like it was – after all there is nothing which is as much fund as these short legs in this tricky karst terrain ….

  14. Day 5 from the Scottish 6 days, a really interesting area, supper technical, super fast and in WOC 2015 terrain! Personally I had a bad run but my two brothers did really well.

  15. I suggest WOC 2013 relay final:

    It was incredibly inspiring to see how many different forkings were used to split the runners. Even though lots of them had the possibility to run together for quite long parts of the course, which made the competition like a face-to-face fight, where the most concentrated and self-confident won.

    Prize: 3+3 Sälen – June 27th-29th 2014.

    • Yep, the WOC relay was great (although i liked the middle distance courses in the same terrain even better). This was one of the courses I tried this year were I did not really master the course setters challenges – and many of the world class runners had the same problem. Forking was also good – and made for an exciting relay.

  16. My suggestion is O.Kratovs LLabyrinth-O. Looks like a really challenging training.


    Prize: MOC

  17. Mattia Debertolis

    I suggest the last stage of Croatia Open in Golubinjak, the terrain was very interesting and techincal! I enjoyed it a lot!

    Prize: POM or Andalucia meeting

  18. My suggestions is POM 2013 WRE – Middle Distance


    Prize: Andalucia-O-Meeting

  19. I think Finnish qualifications Middle Distance for WOC 2013 is worth to mention.

    Both men and women.

    Women: http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/20130621mmkatsD21/

    Lots of mistakes to first control and difficult orienteering whole race.
    Men: http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/20130621mmkatsH21/

    Difficult orienteerin as well and very physical course. Many top orienteers participating.

    Interested in POM.

  20. – JWOC middle final M20/W20
    Nice and challenging terrain, perfect races for best of wolrd juniors, and the great win of Swedish boys;-)

    – Sprint in Matera
    Narrow streets, very technical terrain and nice courses

    Wolrd Cup Final – sprint Men/Women
    Last “big” races on Simone, very challenging and prestigious races

    (all to third category, I ran only JWOC middle final, not as competitor, but only as a training after race; and I set courses only for one race:http://ob.tmapserver.cz/scripts/reitti.cgi?act=map&id=740&kieli=cz, but please don’t take it to the survey;-))

    (Bubo Cup)

  21. The selection races from the finnish for woc in finland!
    They were more awsome then vuokatti itself!

  22. I suggest the second day of this years “Classic O Challenge” in Switzerland.


    The Moosalp area was rarely used for orienteering and might be one of the most beautiful terrains in Switzerland. The course itself is a nice example of a real long distance with challenging long route choices which might be hard to choose due to many great views up there. http://www.classic-o-challenge.ch/tl_files/classico/Fotos/Fotos_Moosalp/COC_2013_Moosalp_23.jpg

    Prize: Andalucia O Meeting

    • Thanks for your suggestion, Philipp. As you say, a real classic long distance course – and I guess that’s the concept with the Classic O challenge. I’ve already studied the courses there earlier, and have to say it looks fantastic.

  23. My votes go to WOC middle distance qualification, Vuokatti.

    Men: http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/20130621mmkatsH21/
    Women: http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/20130621mmkatsD21/

    Very nice and difficult orienteering all the way from the start.

    (WOC is my favourite interest)

  24. WOC middle this year
    Varying challenges and a super cool terrain.

    SM long
    Complex routechoices and difficult to perform.

    Prize: Orievents /Training Camps, Alto Alentejo, Portugal

  25. Hi! I suggest the last stage in Croatia Open (Golubinjak)! The terrain was beautiful and very technical. The race was very hard and competitive but I really enjoyed it!

    Prize: Andalucia O-Meeting

  26. I suggest the “6. Nationaler OL” in Switzerland


    because the course varies a lot between the first (and last) part, which is very technical and difficult/hard to run, and the middle part, where the terrain is ultrafast.

    In addition to that the scenery is just beautiful.

    I’d love to go to POM

  27. I suggest the sprint of Euromeeting 2013 in Scottland. Interesting terrain and the course setter has done a great job. In the first part you always have to stay in contact with the map and then a drastic change (which cost many runners time!) of terrain into the second part. Route choices included and it´s not clear which one is the best alternative at first sight. For me a perfect sprint.
    all prices are nice.

    • Thanks, Franz! I missed this during Euromeeting (out travelling), so I hadn’t seen it before. Maybe not the most challenging sprint I have seen – but the variation makes it interesting.

  28. Here are my suggestions:

    Italian Sprint Champs in Subiaco http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-vcdf8skRmJo/UaybGE3ZQ4I/AAAAAAAAJAs/6Wf6IKhUuN0/s1600/Subiaco_Sprint_2013_Alessio.jpg
    Really tricky terrain in a beautiful typical Italian town, the course was not too eccessive, but good to run with high speed! Nice the multilevel after the spectator’s control.

    WMOC Long final in Monti della Luna
    Wonderful terrain, it seems like Scandinavia, but in Italy, with really nice view of the Olympic’s mountains. Interesting course, with part in different terrain (high speed forest, rocky area, open area)

    Andalucia is a really interesting prize =)

    • Thanks a lot for the suggestions. Looks like somebody else suggested them after you (and that your somment was just hanging around in the spam filter) – all well now, though.

  29. Thanks all! So many great suggestions! Keep them coming! I’ll go through them all tomorrow, but now I’ve got to get some sleep:)

  30. The best course that I ran in this year was the Artprize urban adventure. http://grurbanadventurerace.com/artprize-edition/
    This race involved both an art competition in the center of a city, and trails outside the city. Super fun, and unique.

    • Thanks, Holley. I couldn’t find a map for this one (is there even a normal orienteering map?). Would be nice to see what kind of map was used here.

  31. I suggest the Austrian Night-Championships M21E.
    It was a very interesting and challenging course made by Libor Zridkavesely.
    On the one hand physically tough and on the other hand a lot of tricky controls for the night!

    Here ist the link to Route-Gadget:

    Andalucia O Meeting Package would be nice! :)

  32. Michal Krajčík

    My suggestion:
    Slovak middle distance championship – M 21 E course.
    Really challenging terrain and course + perfect map.

    Link: https://picasaweb.google.com/110211972591274760693/OrienteeringCompetitions2013#5885358409032487442

    Worth to run that course!

    • Thanks Michal! A nice course in a challenging terrain which had “missed my radar”. Nice variation in the terrain. The only remark I have is that it would be good to try to have a longer route choice leg (the longer ones in this course do not really give route choice challenges) – but I it doesn’t look too easy in this terrain without sacrificing too much of the other elements in the course…

  33. I suggest the Norwegian night Championship: really tough and demanding orienteering all the way.


    3+3 Sälen would be nice :)

    • Thanks, Jo! This was one of the courses I considered very hard for this intro-article – but then I took the “safe” choice of the WOC race instead. But this was a course I really liked – and again I course I spent quite some time analyzing (in Norwegian though – at this address http://www.o-norge.no/wordpress/?p=692 – well worth a read if you understand Norwegian)

  34. I suggest Norwegian ultralong race Blodslitet. blood, sweat and tears. It will challenge you mentaly and physically.


    MOC,AOM and POM, one of those

    • Thanks, Markku! I followed the GPS-tracking during the race – and this one really had some interesting long legs on the long last loop. Kind of a pity one has to have the shorter loops in the start to split up the field – but I guess this “Prologue” just makes the long loop even more challenging…

  35. I nominate the NM middle distance finals planned by Damien Renard. The courses are linked from here:
    Challenging the whole way to find the best lines and produced exciting tight races between the top runners, textbook middle distance.

    Also I want to nominate the WC sprint at Ammerud planned by Gaute Hallan Steiwer, his post race analyses is here http://www.gautehallansteiwer.com/2013/06/worldcup-loypelegger/
    Has to be a clever sprint course when some of the best sprint orienteers in the World lose so much missing the best routes.

    • Thanks a lot, Helen! I had planned to try out that NM middle final course, but unfortunately the qualification wasn’t as challenging as the final, so nothing for an old man who needs a really tricky course to have a chance:)

      But the final was a nice one – with a combination of route choice legs and tricky orienteering. With this great terrain, I guess Damien could have made the course even a tick more interesting if he hadn’t been confined to using the same arena for four NM races + 2 World Cup races next year without overlapping. But that just adds to making this a really good course setting job.. I did some quick analysis of the course here http://www.o-norge.no/wordpress/?p=301 (in Norwegian)

      Thanks for the link to Gaute’s WC sprint analysis – I had missed that one! Nice course with many challenges – I followed the exciting GPS-tracking with interest. There were some interesting legs in the end where the course planner managed to stir up things a bit …

  36. I suggest Tallinn City Race (one event during the Tallinn Orienteering Week 2013) in Tallinn historical (UNESCO) Old Town. Even thought I couldn’t participate it seems that there was interesting route choices and partly detailed map reading during the course. The course setter Tomi-Andre Piirmets (EYOC M16 class runner) did very good job.
    Map from GPS tracking: http://sportrec.navirec.com/ui/#18rs6qh

    Interest: MOC

  37. I suggest the German middle distance championship M21E course that was really tricky.

  38. Hello! This is my suggestion to the course of the year.


    It was a really funny sprint, very technical. And notice the tunnel through the area around control 4-11. Many misstakes were made here. Danish sprints are nearly always this technical, but I think this is more than the normal. There were many traps to fall in.

    • Thanks for the suggestion! There has to be some reason why the Danes are so good sprinters:) The tunnel between 4 and 9 wasn’t exactly easy to spot…

  39. Hello!
    I suggest Park World Tour in China (Ruins of Yuanmingyuan), the third day. Because I think this is a really funny sprint, very complicated but real a beautiful place!

    Also i want to nominate the 4 stage in the Portugal O-Meeting because I love this kind of maps and this was a really tricky map!

    Prize: Andalucia O-Meeting it’s ok! ;)

    • The PWT-map was actually one I suggested as part of the intro-article because it looks very special. I decided against it because there are some legs (especially in the start) which are quite easy – but still a very nice course and terrain.

      About the POM course: That’s actually the third(!) day from POM 2013 which is suggested here. Another nice race for sure – but not sure if this is as special that it will win – but time will show.

  40. Ari-Pekka Joensuu

    I suggest the WOC 2013 Sprint Final. And also atmosphere in the stadium was incredible.


  41. My suggestion:
    middle distance from Russian Championship

    And also I think, sprint in Monsanto was amazing, technical and very interesting

  42. Hans Petter Mathisen

    My suggestion is this course made by Thomas Natvig Årstad: http://org.ntnu.no/ogruppa/sportslig/doma/show_map.php?user=thomars&map=2434

    Why? Because this is Ocad-art, and the message he is sending is something i really support!

    And the terrain is really beautiful ( WOC long qual Area 2010 ).

    Bergen Sprint camp would be nice… no just kidding!

    Would like Sælen 3+3

    • Not sure I can take that piece of art really serious, but I definitely noticed it when it was posted:)

      Looking forward to see you at Bergen Sprint Camp – need to work at your weak sides, you know:)

  43. I suggest the Irish Orienteering Championships classic distance:
    The course used different types of open mountain and semi-open areas well.
    The start triangle on this map is actually the first control.

  44. I would like to suggest the WMOC 2013 Long Final in Monti della Luna. It was a fantastic terrain and a very difficult course for legs and also for brain :)
    Here it is the link of the map.
    I was there posing and checking the controls and it was very beautiful wood with high runnability and long visual. And it wasn’t so steep as it seems.


    Price would be Andalucia-o or MOC

    • Thanks for the suggestion, Stefano. I’ve studied those courses earlier, and it looks like it was a real adventure running there (we were actually quite close to driving by and taking the spectator-races, but then in the end decided otherwise).

  45. Hi,

    Propably I didn’t run the best course of the year. My own races that I ran the best course was Finnish ultra long in men’s 35 category. Terrain was great and course was including various different elements and route choices. There was also couple of great sprint races, but its always hard to choose between forest and city which is better?


    • Thanks a lot for the suggestion, Saku. Looks like a nice and challenging terrain. I could not find the M21 course anywhere outside Routegadget (it is quite cumbersome to view it in RG), so I added a shorter course to the archive (M45) – it looks nice as well – but the long one would probably have been the correct one …?

  46. Wolfgang Pötsch

    I send some other suggestions;

    Gaziantepe – close to Syrian border was used for Turkisch competition with mostly turkisch runners – university championships. gaziantepe courses offer long route choices and shorter legs with map reading in the labyrinth of streets. Map here

    Chiatona – mass start long at MOC, long legs with route choices, butterflies Map here

    Castelsardo – castle on the hill, nice labirint, also controls in open area. Map here

    Bundesländerstaffel – in austria we have event with 5 runners running in a relay consisting of youngsters , seniors and women and men. Interesting forking within A,C,D,E course , special extra forking within D and E (longest courses) and butterflies for A at spectator control and E at the last control Map here. Routegadget available

    • The Turkish sprint looks interesting. Looks kind of long for a sprint, though. Did they really win that in 15 minutes? The MOC long distance also looks nice – although not a very special course? I think I was in this terrain once (or a very similar one). Very interesting and quite tricky if you lost control. Thanks also for the relay course.

    • Wolfgang Pötsch

      Many nice courses already published – I want to nominate some more – also they will not win but they are nice for looking and can open some of you interest trying orienteering. I publish from 5 days of Istanbul the long course of 1 day in Belgrad Forest, then from MOC sprint trainings in Alberobello and Monopoli – two really fascinating places – Alberobello with Trulli houses and the MOC prologue – sprint relay – course planner for sprint relay the former worldchampion Janne Salmi.#

      Here is the link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/108655794@N07/

      • Thanks for the suggestions, Wolfgang. A lot of suggestions from you – I’ll add one more of them from to the “pool”: The Albarello sprint, as that is one which has been given kind words on the Internet before. Thanks!

  47. For me, the Course of the Year 2013 was the JWOC Long distance: http://www.jwoc2013.cz/upload/live/long_M20_shadow.jpg

    It’s rather easy to plan a nice course on a detailed piece of forest, but it’s lot harder to plan a good one in a rather average terrain – as was the case for JWOC long distance. This is the real art of course setting.

    I had the privilege to see the transformation of the courses from the initial stages (as the SEA for JWOC). The course setter had a clear vision: to include as many fundamental route choices as possible and to use rather easy (as he calls it: long distance) control sites. In this case, the terrain was also a “victim” of the concept.

    A leg-by-leg route choice analysis by the course setter Radek Novotný can be found here: http://repreob.hyperlink.cz//repre/doc/pdf/JWOC2013long.pdf

    P.S.: my interest is MOC.

    • Great analysis by Radek there – I hadn’t spotted that one. I did write an analysis as well, but only directly on the GPS-data, and not with as much passion as Radek. So people – this one is really worth a read! And of course it sets the course more in perspective. A very worthy suggestion!

  48. I would like to suggest the prolog sprint Of Trofeo delle Regioni in south Italy: one of the most tricky and funny sprint that I run in my career. A lot of narrow road, steep stairs and little canopy: in the south it’s impossible don’t have fun with these orienteering race!!!


    For the price Andalucia O meeting or POM or Bubo/OO cup

    • :) Yet another Italian sprint – there area so many great sprint areas (and courses) in Italy that it is not easy to choose. For me the Matera sprint feels the most special of the Italian sprints this year, but this surely looks like a nice one as well!

  49. I suggest Kapa-3 2nd day middle M21E.
    Technical orienteering + lots of fun – blue = MUD.

    Happy winner:

    Prize: AOM or OOcup

    • Thanks for the suggestion! To tell you the truth, though, in one of the interviews which will be published one of these days a runner names this as the worst course of the year – you’ll see why when the article is published (mud is a keyword:).

  50. The best courses I ran this year were the NM Middle Final (where I ran the public race), the JWOC 2015 test event in Rauland where the course setter achieved a lot of interesting problems in a very small area and the O-Festivalen Long Distance.

    I had to abstain from NM Night due to illness, that looked like a really interesting course!

    • Thanks, Terje! Helen already suggested the NM middle – a good choice! The test event in Rauland looks like a really nice course with middle distance characteristics. I guess there will be good opportunities to get up to Rauland and test these terrain the next years:)

  51. The best course I ran this year was our club long distance training in Crni lug – contours only map (part of map was used for Croatia open this year also) with thousands of depressions!

    As for prize – Andalucia or MOC sounds interesting ;)


    • Thanks, Toni! Crni Lug is a great map – even with all details on it is tricky – with only contours I guess it is close to impossible to relocate if you loose control. And these long legs – this looks like a super cool course to run!

  52. I would like to nominate the Men’s Elite Middle Distance from the Canadian Orienteering Championships in October.
    You can find the course on Route Gadget here: http://orienteering.ca/cgi-bin/reitti.pl?act=map&id=468&kieli=

    I didn’t get a chance to run the course as I was injured but I walked the first very challenging 6 controls.
    The woods are stunningly open yet criss-crossed with fallen trees forcing you off your bearing. What makes the course setting so good is the way you are forced to change gears at 7 and then again on your way to 13 after an incredibly technical start. The course setter also did a fantastic job including probably the most challenging long leg possible on this map and adding into the mix.

    My choice of prize is MOC.

    • Thanks, Jeff – always nice with some maps&courses from outside Europe! Looks like a nice middle distance course. The long leg does maybe not have too big route choice challenges, but as you say you need to change gears…

  53. Along with a few of the courses already nominated, one of my favourites this year was the Australian Ultra Long on Creswick Diggings.
    Fantastic variations, with solid long legs in the vague spur-gully terrain, and loops in the intricate gold mining areas. In the spur gully, the terrain was fast, but energy sapping – so tough choice between straight or track routes. While the gold mining required full on concentration and tight navigation, and kept you on your toes for the full 2+ hours!

    3 maps;

    (3 days of trenches)

    • Thanks a lot for your suggestions, Lizzie. Great to see some more courses/maps outside Europe suggested. I love those maps from gold-digging areas in Australia – really hope to get there to run some time. The course also looks great – noted among the courses to vote for!

  54. Many of my favorite courses of the year have already been suggested! Splash Planet in New Zealand and Ruins of Yuanmingyuan in China are the first two that come to mind.

    So, here’s one that almost certainly has not been suggested yet:

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=469719423082930&set=a.250155281706013.68615.214607508594124 (hopefully this link works!)

    Its the Queen’s College Orienteering Club 15th Anniversary race in Hong Kong. 97 controls over 15km with 590 meters of climb. Mass start-multiple butterfly-varied terrain madness with amazing views overlooking Hong Kong. I don’t think the best course necessarily needs to have the greatest terrain or the greatest course planning, it just has to be memorable and fun. And this looks like it to me.

    MOC 2014 for the win!

    • Thanks a lot, Will – looks like great fun indeed. I’d need a higher quality version of the map – I made a request at the Facebook page.

      • Map is now available here:

        And here are the comments from the course setter:
        The map was at 1:7500 to allow more space to put the control circles. First part of the course (top of the mountain) was originally in 1:10000 and I enlarged it directly to 1:7500 so the symbols are not at correct size.

        This 97 controls course was for the Men Elite class with 18 starters, and only 7 finished within the time limit of 6 hours. You can see the results here: http://orienteering.hk/20130217Results.pdf

        I placed 100 controls out there for totally 8 courses. The easiest course is for M10 & W10 classes. Some asked me why not set the ME course at 100 controls but 97. It is because this race was to celebrate my high school club’s 15th anniversary, which was founded in 1997.

  55. Aleksey Agafonov

    I suggest WOC midlle final. Interesting and difficult terrain. Besides, at this distance won our Russian!)))

  56. the most interesting course i set in 2013, was for the local munich sprint cup, the terrain is not the hardest so i had to invent something new and i came up with the chessboard-O


  57. This year I ran many fun sprint races! It seems organizers are finding more and more interesting areas for sprint! I made a top 5 from this season with my favourite races. Most of them are already mentioned, but Centrum Team Sprint in the zoo of Skansen (Stockholm) was also kind of special!

    1. Sprint The Bay in Splash Planet (New Zealand)

    2. MOC-PWT Sprint in Matera (Italy)

    3. PWT in Ruins of Yuanmingyuan (China)

    4. POM Sprint in Monsanto (Portugal

    5. Centrum Team Sprint in Skansen (Sweden)

    Prize: AOM or MOC

    • Thanks, Yannick! First I’ve got to say I’m impressed by your good sprint results – keep up the good work!

      About your suggestions, the centrum team sprint looks like a cool sprint. Øystein Kvaal Østerbø wrote “- Really cool to run on Skansen, with a very detailed map. A lot of controls, and both longer route choice legs and many micro route choices.” – and I agree with him :)

  58. I’m nominating the New Zealand World Cup sprint race at Government House – got quite a shock when I picked up the map. Speaking to people afterwards I think the general feeling was that the planner had won.

    I can’t find the girls course online but here are Oystein’s maps:

    Part 1: http://okvaal.com/maps/show_map.php?user=oystein&map=269
    Part 2: http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=75386

  59. I pick the WRE course from NAOM, one of the best competitions in the early season.

    Tricky layout in very fast terrain:

    I fancy the POM package…

  60. I suggest the fourth stage of Oringen – Joksmokksetappen. This year’s Origen was my first time in Sweden and I absolutely loved it! I particularly liked this stage because it had the perfect combination of o – technique and running; the amazing forest was a big plus :)


    Wish list: AOM, POM, Orievents or Oocup… but anything will do ;P

  61. 4th stage of Coppa Italia on Fausior: nice map and a tricky long race. You can enjoy every minute spent in the wood.


    Prize: AOM or POM

  62. The best course I ran this year was AXPO Sprint relay right before WC round in Switzerland.
    Part1: http://kartes.magnets.lv/show_map.php?user=tamuzs&map=674
    Part2: http://kartes.magnets.lv/show_map.php?user=tamuzs&map=675
    It was an interesting and challenging sprint course, also fair because of a very well planned forking system and touch-free punching system made it even more dynamic.
    This is the future and it is not as bad as some would like to think.

  63. I nominate Sprint The Bay (STB) stage 2 in Splash Planet (New Zealand)

    The coolest place ever for a sprint race!


    Prize: AOM or MOC

  64. 3. One of the most interesting courses and terrains i´ve seen/heard this year is definitely the IV andalucia-o-meeting Wre course, it looks really fun, technical, and with nice route choices, and of course with the best athletes participating.


    Prize: Andalucia-o-meeting

    • Thanks, Tiago! I’ve studied that course earlier, and I found the orienteering very tricky. For me it would have been close to “bingo” with some of those controls in the green, but it looks like the best runners actually managed to orienteer well there. Here is the map in omaps http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=77926 (I had problems opening it in TracTrac on this computer)

  65. I think course from this year´s PWT should be considered as the best course of 2013 as well. Here is the map: http://pwt.org/download/china13/china13_sprint2_map.pdf

    Prize: MOC or Orievents or Portugal-O-meeting

  66. Carolina Delgado

    3- I found the course of the third day of Antalya-O-Days in Turkey very interesting, challenging and different. I would have loved to go there for sure because from what I saw from the pictures it looked really amazing and an orienteering paradise! :D


    Prize: Andalucia-o-meeting

  67. Many great courses have been posted and there are several “best” courses I ran this year. My number 1 goes to New Zealands Southern Island Middle Champs.

    The South Island Middle Distance Championships in St Arnaud was a big challenge. Dense scrub forest made the visibility poor and it was very hard to keep the direction even on short distances. The course was good, with a variation of shorter and longer legs and easier and more difficult parts. Probably my longest time on a middle distance race this year. The area is definitely worth a visit!
    Here’s the map:

    And a picture of the dense forest: http://ol-shop.at/erik/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/P1030838.jpg

    Preferred prize: AOM or MOC

  68. Hi!
    Polish Club Championship in Sprint with finish inside Euro 2012 area, Stadium in Wrocław (capacity 40.000 spectators).

    GPS Tracking from competition is also available here:

    Price: AOM

  69. Hi!
    My choice for the best course of 2013 is the Middle Distance in Lavarone (Italy), I liked the terrain and I really had fun running there!
    I run WA, but I couldn’t find the map online, so I’ll link WE:


    Price: OOCup

  70. Hi and thanks for proposing this contest! It is always a nice “winter event” to take part in.

    My choice for the best course I ran in 2013 is Long Distance Veneto/Trentino Championship, in Hinterbech (VI), on the highlands hosting next year’s WOC.

    Link to the map here: http://www.highlandsopen.com/index.asp?fm=1&pg=15&id=354&categ=339 , then download and unzip to see the maps (men’s course had a map exchange at control #16).

    It is the course I had most fun in, with interesting legs, very nice terrain and also beautiful sights.

    Prize: AOM.

    • Ah, you are making a lot of work for me here, Massimo. The course looks interesting though, so I took my time to get it done. A very interesting terrain – I did a nice training there some years ago.

  71. This deserves to get posted here. Centrum OK KM lång:

    Symbology is explained here:

    Unusual approach for an unusual, hard to reach area. Only areas near controls were mapped, the rest of the map was auto generated or remote mapped. So map was made for the course, not the opposite. “Tror Stockholms roligaste terrängområde är här ute” comment tells a lot.

    (Ilves 3)

  72. I suggest FinnSpring D21 (27 April 2013)

    This course is interesting. I liked this terrain(I ran W20 course, it was difficult for me)

    Prize: Orievents

  73. Now I am very, very soon drawing the line for suggestions here – voting will start tomorrow. You’ve got another 20 minutes or so to come with your suggestions :)