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Course of the Year 2022: Submit your suggestions!


What was the best orienteering course of 2022? WOC Long distance won in 2021, The Norwegian World Champs selection race long distance won in 2019, the World Cup Final Middle in Czech Republic won in 2018, the World Champs middle distance in Estonia won in 2017 and the last stage of France 5 won in 2016. Other winners are a spectacular sprint between boulders and old buildings in Portugal in 2013 and some great technical orienteering at Portugal O-Meeting in 2012. Who do you think should win in 2022?

The search for the orienteering course of the year  is always fun and interesting – with many nice courses and maps surfacing! The rules are simple: Suggest a course from a competition or training in 2022, and state the reason why you think this course deserves to be “The course of the Year 2022″. 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 2022″. We will also identify the best course in each category: Sprint, Middle and Long.

And please state the reason for your suggestion – that’s where the fun & the passion for orienteering comes in! YOU are the one to decide who takes the prestigious top spot this year- first by submitting suggestions – and then by voting.

PS! Suggestions for Route to Christmas are also welcome; a combined suggestion doubly so!

More than 4000 Euro worth of prizes for YOU

Prizes from sponsors make it more fun to be in on the suggestions and voting. This year we again have some great sponsors and prizes – with a total value of more than 4000 Euro! We hope this means many good suggestions & a lot of interactivity from YOU! See all details about the sponsors & prizes below! Use the comments below, and submit either

  1. The course which in your opinion is the best course you run in 2022 yourself!
  2. The best course you set this year as a course-setter.
  3. The overall best course you have seen/heard about in 2022

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 2022!

Starting point

To provide you with a starting point, I’ve included some of the legs featured in Route to Christmas so far this year. Do any of these courses deserve a nomination for Orienteering Course of 2022?



The following rules are given for “The course of the Year 2022″.

  • The course must have been run in competition or training in 2022 (an exception for courses in December 2021 as they were not covered in last year’s contest)
  • Suggestions are submitted as a comment to this post – including link to the map (this is important!) 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 (please do check out the sponsor prizes and choose one, it is much nicer to win something you really want!).
  • You must give a reason for why you think this course deserves to be named “The course of the Year 2022″ (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 foot-orienteering 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 2022″. 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 2022″, and prizes drawn among the ones suggesting and voting. All prizes are transferable to other persons (you don’t have to travel yourself). Note that in those cases where prizes are race entries, the race organizers may decide to withdraw prizes or transfer prizes to another competition/year if races are canceled due to COVID-19.

Event sponsor: 55th Kainuu Orienteering Week (KOW), July 2nd-7th 2023 (Finland)

  • Prize offered: 4 packages, each consisting of 2 free participations for the whole week in any class (competition classes or open courses) at Kainuu Orienteering Week 2023. Total value up to 850 EUR. Transferable to other persons.
  • Open and International Orienteering Week in Finland, city of Kuhmo and Jämäsvaara competition terrain (one of the best orienteering terrains in Kainuu)
  • More information: Kainuu Orienteering Week is the Finland’s biggest orienteering week and the world’s second oldest orienteering week, as it has been held annually since the year 1966. Kainuu O Week is held in the Kainuu region of Finland and traditionally the event is held in the beginning of July (week 27). In 2023, the event will be held in the Kuhmo and Jämäsvaara competition area. Jämäsvaara is one of the most legendary and finest orienteering and nature destinations in Kuhmo and Kainuu. The magnificent terrain and landscapes of the area attracts the eyes (and shoes) and offers orienteers a memorable orienteering experience! Note also the 2nd official Kainuu MTBO Week 2.-7.7.2023 in Kuhmo – come and enjoy the best MTBO terrains and great landscapes of Kainuu. The following entry steps are: 28th Feb 2023 / 31st May 2023 / 12th June 2023. For more information see www.rastiviikko.fi.


Event sponsor: O’France 2023 Cerdagne Capcir July 29th – August 4th (France)

  • Prize offered: 2 packages, each for 2 persons, consisting of full entry fee for O’France 2023 (1 training, 5 forest stages, 1 urban race, 1 o-top). Value about 500 EUR. Transferable to other persons.
  • Have you ever heard about Font Romeu ? French Orienteering Federation (FFCO) and local clubs are pleased to welcome you for a new O’France edition there, in the magnificent and wild terrains of the Pyrénées-Orientales. “It’s a dream terrain for orienteering ! With the landscapes and the sun, it’s the best place for a 5 days of races. I used to go there every year when I was young. The region of Font-Romeu for sure helped me to improve my skills”, said Thierry Gueorgiou, sponsor of O’France 2023. More information at the webpage: O’France 2023 (o-france.fr) – see a small tast of what awaits you in France here.


Event sponsor: Swiss O Week 2023, July 15th – 22nd 2023 (Switzerland)

  • Prize offered: Competition package for two persons: Entry for two persons at the Swiss O Week 2023 in Flims Laax, including all mountain railway tickets for the week and free entries to all WOC 2023 finals. Value 500 CHF.
  • You are welcome to Swiss O Week 2023 in Flims Laax, from July 15 – July 22. The SOW 2023 will be overlapping with the World Orienteering Championships 2023 Flims Laax. It is therefore possible to combine the two events as a spectator and as a runner at the Swiss O Week! Read more at the website https://swiss-o-week.ch/en and on Facebook www.facebook.com/SwissOWeek


Training camp/event sponsor: Madeira O-Camp 2023 + Madeira O-Festival 2023 (optional), (Portugal)

  • Prize offered: A package for  2 people – consisting of all packages of the Madeira O-Camp (11 different orienteering trainings), 3 nights accommodation in Hotel do Centro in Funchal (with breakfast, individual rooms). In addition optionally 2 entries to the Madeira O-Festival 2023 competitions January 13th – 15th 2023 (3 stages, all included) if this fits your travel arrangements. Total value up to 440 EUR. Transferable to other persons.
  • More information: For about two decades, orienteering events have been organized on a regular basis all over the island of Madeira, and there are already close to 100 orienteering maps. This island has a great wealth of natural heritage. We emphasize its epic forests, with special emphasis on the largest patch of Laurissilva forest in the world. The Madeira Orienteering Festival will be the 4th edition, after two years without organizing. Our club (CMoF) has experience in the organization of many outdoor events, the most popular is the Madeira Island Ultra Trail (MIUT). To help develop the sport and take advantage of all this potential, we decided to create a training camp with around 15 different orienteering courses, not only for the many tourists who visit us, but also for those who live in the region and enjoy orienteering. Many of the forest maps cover areas at an altitude of around 1400m, being the highest at 1800m, a consequence of the island’s orography. Our urban maps cover very different villages, some are found in beautiful fajãs such as Seixal, Porto Moniz and Jardim do Mar, cut by intricate paths along banana plantations (Jardim do Mar) or vineyards (Estreito de Câmara de Lobos), which are crossed by endless levadas that blend in between the paths (Machico; Arco da Calheta; Seixal). Ready to embark on this O-adventure through the beautiful island of Madeira?


Software sponsor: OCAD Orienteering 3-year license

  • Prize offered: One 3-year licence for the software “OCAD Orienteering”.  Value about 400 EUR. Transferable to other person (before activation).
  • More information: OCAD 2018 Orienteering – Perfect to Produce Orienteering Maps. This edition is dedicated for orienteering map making with the OCAD Sketch App Data Exchange tool, legibility check tools, a step-by-step wizard for analyzing of LiDAR data and much more. Also, it contains the Course Setting Module with which you can use the new Canvas function or upload courses directly to Livlox and SPORTident Center. Read more at https://www.ocad.com.


Event sponsor: OOCup – July 26th – 30th 2023 (Slovenia)

  • Prize offered: 2 packages, each for 2 people – consisting of: Entry for the complete 5 days OOCup competition. Total value around 400 EUR. Transferable to other persons.
  • In 2023 we are going back to karst forests, to the beautiful forests of Trnovo plateau. 8 years have passed since the last OOcup in these areas and it is time to revisit them! All maps will be updated to new standard and we will also add some new terrain which has never before been used for orienteering.  It is going to be GREAT! More at oocup.com



Event sponsor: Czech Orienteering Tour, August 3rd—6th 2023 (Czech Republic)

  • Prize offered: 2 packages, each consisting of 4 free participations for the Czech O-Tour 4 days in Kokořínsko. Total value up to 400 EUR. Transferable to other persons.
  • Why to come: some of the most difficult sandstone terrains, a great vacation in the middle of summer, venue of the Orienteering World Cup 2023.
  • More information: The summer part of Czech O-Tour 2023 will go on at the beginning of August in Kokořínsko region: 1 amazing sprint and 3 races in rocky sandstone terrain. But that’s still not all. In addition to your own racing, you can be in the scene of an elite orienteering event. On the same days and in the same location, the 2nd round of the Orienteering World Cup will take place. This part of the Czech O-Tour will thus be the largest even with numerous international participation. For more information see o-tour.czFacebookInstagram
  • CzechOTour2023

Event sponsor: Lipica Open 2023. March 11th – 15th 2023 (Slovenia)

  • Prize offered: 2 packages, each for 2 people – consisting of entry to complete 5 Day Lipica Open competition. Value up to about 330 euro. Transferable to other persons.
  • Lipica Open is a popular season starter in the Kras region of Slovenia. Enjoy Slovenian karst terrain already in March. Please note that there are good training camp possibilities in SW part of Slovenia and feel free to contact us regarding that at any time. More at www.lipicaopen.com


Event sponsor: Kapa 2023 – June 30th to July 2nd (Latvia)

  • Prize offered: Two family entry packages to Kapa 3days, where each package includes an entry for two adults and one child, space for a tent at the event camping and a car parking voucher. Total value is around 250 EUR. Transferable to other person.
  • More information: Kapa 3-days is the largest orienteering event in the Baltics. We have hosted participants from around 20 countries. It is a long o-weekend for families – from Friday to Sunday. This year we are entering an unused terrain next to the Baltic Sea around the town Roja. Kindergarten will be available at the event centre, great atmosphere guaranteed, including live music in the evening and a sprint relay at the event centre. Just come with your family and enjoy the Baltic summer and the beautiful beaches of the Baltic Sea! Check out the best connection to Riga (RIX) airport or come by your car! This year’s event page: 2023.kapa.lv. Facebook page: facebook.com/Kapa3days.


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. Maya Nedyalkova

    For me, the course of the year is definitely WOC Individual Sprint (Men) – http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=321607

    It is so beautifully made, the route choices are just astonishing! For many controls, there are 3 completely separate route choices and it’s hard to decide which is the best even while sitting at home and analyzing carefully.

    Prize I would want if I win: Madeira O-Camp 2023 + Madeira O-Festival 2023

    • Thanks a lot, Maya – definitely a good choice. The course really separated the best from the others. Although some say it is too difficult to see the fastest route in competition speed, I like this kind of sprint. As a runner you have to decide if you should slow down to increase the chance to find the fastest route, or if this is a leg where it is OK to not find the fastest route…

  2. Petya Koleva Nedyalkova

    I suggest the long distance Men of the Wolrd Cup Final in Switzerland as a
    course of the year. Link to map: http://omaps.worldofo.com/?id=327366

    The course has it all – great terrain, interesting long leg and
    technical shorter controls!

    Prize I would want if I win:O’France 2023 Cerdagne Capcir July 29th – August 4th (France)

    • Thanks, Petya, this was definitely a nice course – already featured in this year’s edition of Route to Christmas.

  3. The middle distance of the world cup in Switzerland should be the course of the year! (http://omaps.worldofo.com/?id=327263)

    It seems like so much fun with all these changes of direction and technical controls!

    Prize I want: Madeira O-Camp 2023 + Madeira O-Festival 2023

  4. Czechia – Long Distance Championship 2022 in extremely rocky sandstone terrain (winner Tomas Krivda in 90′). Spectacular terrain, difficult routchoices, comlpex orienteering.
    Link to map: http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/20220918H21/

    Prize I would want if I win: Lipica Open 2023

    • Definitely a nice course, I had not seen this before. Also looks like I could find an interesting leg for Route to Christmas here.

  5. JWOC M20 long seems interesting with good route-choices. Link: https://events.loggator.com/2022JWOClongM20

    Prize: Lipica Open

    • Thanks, Matjaz. Also a course already featured in Route to Christmas (looks like I have chosen some of the best courses of the year there as well…)

  6. I would suggest the European Champs (WC 2 Round) Long Distance.
    See course here: https://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/2022eocLm/
    I really like the diversity of the terrain. There are clean forests with interesting contour details, and flat green marshy areas. The long leg, and the options to cross the river is also a highlight of the course.
    It was also exciting to follow the event online.

    Prize: Swiss O Week

    • Good suggestion, Tamas! Although som may say that the options to cross the river was not ideal courseplanning (or at least not an ideal way to present it to the runners).

  7. I suggest the long distance of Italy Cup as the course of the year.
    I believe that the course maker did a great job incorporating different technical challenges.

    Prize: Madeira O-Camp 2023

  8. I’d like to suggest SM Long distance 2022 – H21. Very nice terrain, difficult routchoices, comlpex orienteering. Link to map: http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/20221011SMlangH21/.
    Prize I want: Czech O-tour.

    • This looks like a really interesting course in tricky terrain, I’ll definitely look closer at this one. Thanks!

  9. Course of the year


    This year’s jwoc will be remembered for ever due to the special circumstances.

    Back in hot Portuguese in July, I stayed my self in our air conditioned accommodation in Aguilar Da Beira, and then, all of a sudden the shocking message about the forest disciplines cancellation hit us.

    It was bad news and nothing could really comfort the forest runners, but seeing the organisers effort for making something out of the hard situation was beautiful!

    The jwoc sprint relay course is special for few reasons:
    1. It was the first ever sprint relay on jwoc. Even we had no official group (2 girls, 2 boys), it was special moment looking at the exciting competition.

    2. *It was organised within 48 hours!*
    2 days was between forest ban until the organisers showed up with a new plan for the jwoc week. Organising one of the highest level competition in the Orienteering world in this short time is something that every orienteer is fascinated by.

    3. The course was amazing!
    Bruno Nazario (also technical director) & Daniel Silva planned new relay courses, changing the whole Carapito town into a new maze of blockings totally different from the individual sprint they planned in the same place two days before. A combination of small streets, route choices and hilly open area with the special and typical bare rock made this town into the best court for Relay World Championship!

    The course started into a small forest who required the runners to think ahead about choosing a difficult route to the second control. Shortly after this route choice, when you already back in the well known town you realise that blockings from the sprint is now open, and the fast streets are now closed.

    The hilly open area in the middle of the map was the best way to squeeze the runners legs and mind before sequence of short legs.

    Then, the last part was physical and mental but the course was still on going with Route choice and some legs in the forest which you didn’t leant to lose time that close to the finish.

    Those are the reasons why I think that this was the best course of the year!

    A huge amount of respect for all the organisers of this years Jwoc, which functioned at the highest level under surprising and not simple situations at all.


    Preferred prize: OCAD

  10. Two nominations from Latvia:
    Kāpa 3Days Day 1 Middle: https://janistamuzs.lv/show_map.php?user=tamuzs&map=1965
    Kurzemes pavasaris Day 1 Middle: https://janistamuzs.lv/show_map.php?user=tamuzs&map=1886
    Both maps are from Western coast of Latvia, which offers fantastic detailed terrains. These courses were both of good quality, challenging and intense middle distance orienteering all the way.

    Prize: O’France

  11. I’d like to suggest : Middle in Nationale Sud-Ouest 2022 in France

    Maps in Livelox here : https://www.livelox.com/Viewer/NATSO-2022-Moyenne-Distance/A?classId=483023

    At the end of May, the weather was very nice, bright sunshine, heat which made it possible to enjoy the cold beer, arena located in a field with a view of the small village and the forest which surrounds us, and sunset from the tables while enjoying the meal with friends… What more could you ask for?

  12. My favorite this year: Swiss O Days, day 2 at the lake Ritom, great terrain, horrible weather, good courses

  13. I nominate the KO spint final course from this year’s WC in Borås:
    (same for both M and W).
    Demontrated that if there are good quality routechoice legs, even a straight course without any combination can lead to exciting KO sprint races.
    (prize: Swiss O-week)

    • Thank you, Mate. I still enjoy runners choice more, but as long as the terrain allows for it and the courses are good (as here), you can make very good and fair courses that way.

  14. I suggest EOC 2022, Middle distance Men. Very nice terrain, low visibility, comlpex orienteering.
    Link to the map: http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/2022eocMFma/.
    Prize I want: Czech O-tour.

    • Thanks, Mimi, the second course from EOC 2022. I really liked this competition, so definitely worthy a nomination here.

  15. I think the JWOC Long Distance was truly amazing. Interesting and surprising long legs alternating with technical controls on the rocky slopes were a real challenge for the competitors!

    I would like to choose O’France 2023 as prize.

  16. The most challenging and interesting course I ran this year was the 4th stage at O-ringen (H21E). The area of Lunsen is really astonishing, where everything looks very similar and you need full map contact all the time.

    Even if a course in this area is often good, I would say that this course setter makes a very good use out of the area – using the most extreme area just after the start, then heading in to a greener and more diffuse area, then a long loop in the nicest part but choosing mostly denser areas for the control placements, and as ending some different terrain with many stones and partly diffuse. I would say that this course very well used one of the key points for a challenging course for elite runners – denser vegetation, especially closer to the control points. This course provided a real challenge for the runners and many mistakes were made.

    Course link: https://www.livelox.com/Viewer/O-Ringen-Uppsala-etapp-4-medel/H21-Elit?classId=489218

    Favourite prizes: Swiss O Week, Madeira O-Camp or OCAD license

    • Thanks a lot for a good suggestion – and very good reasoning. This terrain is still high on my “wanted” list, and this course looks like it has put a lot of challenging elements together.

  17. 1) The course which in my opinion is the best course I ran in 2022 by myself – shorturl.at/gpuX6 is the 3rd day of Memorial orienteering competition “Pece Atanasoski” – MOCPA, held near Prilep (N. Macedonia) on the 13th of November 2022. So amazing terrain, beautiful nature, big natural rocks with soft ground (fast for running) and surrounded by beautiful pine forest.

    2) The best course I set this year as a course-setter is a second round of Voždovac orienteering league sprint distance race that was also a WRE race for M21E category, held on the 10th of April 2022 in Belgrade, capital of Serbia, in organization of PD Avala – shorturl.at/eqBJN It was really challanging course both technical and physical, with lots of routechoices on the brand new map that I made too.

  18. For me, best race of 2022 was Czech O-Tour i Terezín. Very unique terrain of the fortress city, full of big walls and tunnels, with artificial obstacles (my first race with artificial obstacles). Big challenge, great racing day.

    Prize: Czech O-Tour 2023 (ofcourse).

  19. The course I did enjoy a lot this year was the first stage at this years OOcup in Umea.
    Wild terrain. Tricky control points. A good mix of terrain types, Almost no paths. I personally made it even extra difficult, after falling on a stone and ending up with 5 pieces of map in my hand which resulted in some puzzeling.


    Prize: OCAD

  20. Thanks for all suggestions so far. If somebody want to take a look at the suggestions so far, I have collected them here:


  21. As to me one of the realy challenging courses in 2022 was the Long SL Final #11 at Strängnäs in H21 Elite.



    And my opinion is the leg 19-20 could be a suggestion for Route to Christmass too.

    • Thanks, Kamil, this looks like a very interesting course. I’ll also consider the long leg for Route to Christmas!

  22. I nominate Hu og Hei because it goes back to the very roots of orienteering with insanely long routechoices in rough and breathtaking terrain, with little knowledge from the map about what the forest actually looks like.


    Prize: OOCup

    • Hu & Hei is definitely a really nice and interesting competition – not sure this year’s course stands out a lot compared to earlier editions, but still fine to nominate it!

  23. WMOC Long Distance Finale in Foresta Umbra. Amazing area in South of Italy, great job for course setter mixing long choices in technical area.

    Have a look here: https://www.livelox.com/Viewer?eventName=WMOC-2022-Long-Final&className=M35-A&classId=500752

    Prize: OCAD

    • Thanks, David. That one was on my list to participate in, and the courses looked just as interesting as I expected.

  24. Oskar Edvardsson

    I’d like to nominate one of NTNUI’s Mandagsplukk which is a weekly course set by NTNUI legend Hans Petter Mathisen. This course offers tough Trønder terrain, tricky orienteering from start to finish and makes the most out of the terrain. The control points are not big so always need a very good compass direction to find them.


    Prize: Kainuu Orienteering Week

  25. NM Ultralang H21: https://www.livelox.com/Viewer/NM-ultralang-med-publikumsl-p/H-21-NM?classId=506746

    Most will focus on the two really big long legs where there were many options and different ways to execute the main route choices.
    The leg to the 2nd control is one of the best route choice legs I’ve seen this year, and personally I think it’s probably the route choice I was struggling with the most to decide in the last few years. The 6 best runners on this leg did 5 very different route choices with some significant time differences and many runners (me included) did other variants that was worse than these 5.
    Other legs like 5-6, 7-8 and 10-11 also offered some interesting questions regarding the route choice.
    The more technical part of the course from 11-16 gave also the runners a proper technical challenge after already 100minutes++ of running.

    Also the course was long and that is always good. More time to enjoy the challenges and the very nice terrain. Winning time of 2:33, there ain’t enough of these races around nowadays.

    Prize: Swiss O-Week.
    (Even if the longest race there is only 15,9 km it looks very nice)

    • I was waiting for this one, Ivar. Thanks – let’s see how many you manage to inspire this year. It is on my list to check this one out for Route to Christmas as well, thanks for pointing out the interesting legs!

  26. I would like to recommend to your attention mens’ course of the Czech University Orienteering Champs in Middle distance. A difficult and fast terrain brillantly mapped by Ales Hejna (Olles Maps) and the course set by Radek Teringl which changes the directions, pace, leg lengths and goes again and again into the detailed part.
    And yep, I admit I was involved in organizing the race.

    Favourite prize: Lipica Open 2023

  27. This year I ran two long distances which were particularly interesting in my opinion. One is the race in Cansiglio which was already published in the Route to Christmas and the other is a training-race which I could run with the Finnish team close to Joensuu in their preparation for EOC.

    I think the course in Finland was a very good mix of long route-choices with many variants, shorter route-choices, but also some pure navigation controls in the flatter areas to change the challenge. The course was very though and long going the whole time up and down and with the type of ground which variated a lot, so that you had to adapt your route-choices also depending on it. I think this long-distance had almost everything needed in it. (Maybe also worth for a Route to Christmas?)


    Prize: Kainuu Orienteering Week

    • Thanks, Tobia! Very nice to see a different kind of course. I’ll definitely consider it for Route to Christmas as well.

  28. Jesper Lundsgaard

    Men’s semi final KO sprint at WOC2022.

    Many interesting route choices and intense micro orienteering in high speed. Could have been interesting for an individual sprint.


  29. For me the best course was definitely the 4th stage of the Pomeranian Sprint Cup 2022 at the Citadel in Grudziadz( 5 June 2022).
    Course was not only super fun, but really challenging, as the route choices were quite unusual. It was something completely different then i have ever run, demanding phisically and mentally. Additionally the surrounding, mix of small, dark corridors and open fields of Citadel made wonderful atmosphere.
    link to the course : https://drive.google.com/file/d/178vR0jenpaoXV0uVaGO0YESeWDOjn4Ve/view?usp=drivesdk

    The prize : Madeira O-Camp

    • Thanks, Zuzia! When you start looking into the details of the legs it starts getting very interesting, it must surely have been a lot of fun running here.

  30. I would like to recommend one of the Pomorze Sprint Cup’s races. The fourth stage was unconventional and took place in the tunnels of the fortress. Both the map and the route were extremely interesting and forced the competitor to concentrate fully throughout the run.

    Prize: Madeira O-Camp

    • Thanks, Julia. I guess this is the same as the one suggested by Zuzia above, which indeed looks very interesting.

  31. I would like to nominate the indoor orienteering sprint training held in Heimdal which was a part of the Sprint training camp in Trondheim. The course was set by the fabulous Oskar Andrén. It is apparent, that in such terrain one running at full speed can be struggling with the stairs, narrow passages or prohibited areas seen for instance route choice for control no 7. The reason I nominate this one is that indoor orienteering is something slightly different from what we are used to training normally and can be used a way more to train our cognitive abilities at a fast pace.

    Link: http://www.orientering.no/nyheter/apen-sprintsamling-i-trondheim-mye-loping-i-hoy-fart/ Heimdal VGS, Kolstad arena

    Prize: Madeira O-Camp 2023 + Madeira O-Festival 2023

    • Thanks, Barbora! We have had some indoor competitions being nominated earlier years as well.

  32. I want to nominate a route of the 3rd day of the Grand Prix Pomorza (26-28.08). The competition took place in the central part of the Tricity Landscape Park in Gdynia, which is characterized by a unique post-glacial relief formed by a glacier 15 thousand years ago. It’s the route with a difficult choice of the optional variant.


    Here is also the link to livelox:


    Prize: Czech O-Tour

  33. Terje Wiig Mathisen

    The two best courses I ran this year were probably Veteranmesterskapet, where both route setting, terrain and mapping contributed equally to a very interesting day, and the final part of Harry Lagert Night-O series which we ran in extremely dense fog.
    I suggest the longest courses from both events: https://www.livelox.com/Viewer/Veteranmesterskap-langdistanse-m-TrimtexCup-mellomdistanse/H35?classId=519159 and https://www.livelox.com/Viewer/Harry-Lagerts-Nattcup-2022-Finale/Legendar?classId=541572

    • Thanks, Terje – both very nice courses. I’ll check out Veteranmesterskapet for Route to Christmas as well (Harry Lagert is already in).

  34. I would like to suggest the Dordrecht City Race. This was the 3th race of the Dutch national orienteering competition on March 27th 2022. Dordrecht is the oldest city of Holland. The historical centre is largely car-free and has many small alleys, courtyards, bridges and canals, like many other cities in the Netherlands. These features offer nice possibilities for course-setting.

    Link to the map: https://www.livelox.com/Admin/Maps/Image/86159?eventId=87976&system=Livelox

    I would like to choose the Swiss O Week.

  35. Christoph Stäuble

    Nomination: NOM, night O swiss champs, massstart!
    Reason: ingenious forkingsystem in a not so great forest
    Map: http://www.routegadget.ch/binperl/reitti.cgi?act=map&id=426
    Prize: Swiss O Week

    • Thanks, Christoph. A nice forking for the runners – but not easy for the spectators (if there were any:).

  36. Knut Wiig Mathisen

    I would like to nominate the WMOC long distance H35 course in Puglia, Italy. The forest is remote, wild, runnable with challenging orienteering requiring both good compass use and contour map reading on more or less all legs. Several route choices on many legs and always sub-variants. https://www.livelox.com/Viewer/WMOC-2022-Long-Final/M35-A?classId=500752

  37. Knut Wiig Mathisen

    Prize SoW

  38. I would like to nominate the 4th stage of the Pomeranian Sprint Cup 2022 at the Citadel in Grudziadz ( 5 June 2022). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bUW-QCVjtkk

    Prize: Czech O-Tour 2023

  39. Stage 1 of Pomorze Sprint Cup 2022

    Polish major sprint event started with fascinating sprint race in beautiful medieval old town of Grudziadz. This competition held World Ranking Event label and the terrain, maps and courses were, according to many contestants, worth of any World Championships or World Cup sprint race. Expected winning time (14:30) was set very precisey with Michal Olejnik winning in 14:38. On many of the legs the competitors faced multi routechoice challenges (in many cases even 3 or 4 possible and sensible-looking routechoices). However, the course setter did his best, so that the runners who picked the right one were awarded with shorter splittime. Due to the challenging course and brilliant perfectly-used terrain you always had be on time or even one, two steps ahead to avoid crucial timelosses. Another difficulty in picking appropriate routechoice was the climb (check eg. routechoice to leg no. 6 and guess the best route!). A real sprint blaster!

    Here is the link to the nominated course M21E:

    Here is the link to the routechoice analysis from the whole stage: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/16pxF21WpH00EXx1Dmgf2dbZCNg90WXmd

    Here is an additional link to all the courses and classes: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1M9MvVfxD7cBuV2BWES2FgITIm1fxi6Qp

  40. Stage 4 of Pomorze Sprint Cup 2022

    For many of us orienteering is mainly about new adventures, great challenges and unique terrains. Sprint orienteering is mainly about picking the right routechoices at high speed. Have you ever wandered or even ran through 1-metre wide and 1,8-metre high underground dark tunnels and corridors with hundreds of branches going in completely crazy directions? Could you imagine mixing all of these features into one race? Competitors of this race in the Citadel of Grudziadz lived this dream! Here you can see (REALLY A MUST SEE!) how it looked like in real (runner’s point of view): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bUW-QCVjtkk

    Making a precise and, even more importantly, well-readable map in that terrain was quite of a challenge, but Rafał Podziński managed it pretty well. He also prepared tricky courses with lots of multilevel riddles, which contestans simply loved – many of them asking just after the finish line: ‘Why was that course so short? We want more of this!’.
    Here is the link to the nominated course M21E:

    Here is the link to the routechoice analysis from the whole stage: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1KRKOF7eO7YiaC8K7tuSz8QP5LUifmdD9?usp=sharing

    Here is an additional link to all the courses and classes: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1gVHG4wgXqTLqDayicnjB9eWyygmhv1rq

    • Thanks, Tomasz – this one was already suggested above – but great with all the added information!

  41. I would say that the 2 stages of Italy 5 days 2022 was one of the best maps and terrain I have run in. The terrain was really difficult if you got lost then it was really hard to find your way back. It also had many different route choices, and you had to take into consideration the height.
    Her is the map for the M21:

  42. My favorite is the Spanish middle distance championship.
    A terrain with a very difficult orography, and courses that were liked and put the technical level of the participants to the test.
    The Spanish relay championship was run on the same map, so the terrain used for the middle was small.
    The end was in the same place causing more difficulty to design the routes.
    No stones, the reading of the level curve was essential.
    very interesting course

  43. My favorite this year: Italy 5 days Etape 2 ,

    Great terrain and views, nice map, terrible changing weather, good courses


    Price: Czech Orienteering Tour

  44. I would like to suggest the Swiss O Days long distance on the Sanetsch pass: http://karten.guedels.ch/show_map.php?user=T%C3%A9rence&map=3203
    The beautiful landscape, the two totally different types of terrain, plenty of small lakes as well as some technically complex areas make this terrain unique. A big part of the map was still covered by the sanetsch glacier 150 years ago. You can find some images of the terrain at the bottom of the organizer website https://www.swiss-o-days.ch/fr/allgemeine-infos/swiss-o-days-col-du-sanetsch/

    Prize: Swiss O Week

    • Thanks, Terence, this really looks interesting. The second course of Swiss O Days that has been nominated, but I’d say well worth it!

  45. Thanks for all suggestions so far – I have now updated the list of courses here:


  46. The best course I have run this year was a regional championship Long distance in Chalmazel with lots of top french runners. Very difficult terrain but very nice.
    The decisive leg was 9-10 (maybe can be used for Route to Christmas ?), I thought I was completely lost and I just found the countrol !
    The map here : https://www.livelox.com/Viewer/Championnat-de-ligue-LD-1007/H21-H20-H35?classId=498072
    Prize : ocad

  47. I have a lot of bias on this one (once I’ve been map maker and one of the course setters, together with Daniel Silva), but I would like to suggest the Sprint of JWOC 2022.
    Both Men’s and Women’s courses, so I’ll suggest the M20: https://events.loggator.com/2022JWOCsprintM20

    The courses started with a long leg where you could destroy your race already to the first control because it was very tricky and downhill.

    Thanks for Route to Christmas initiative!

    Prize: OCAD

  48. Hello Jan,
    I suggest Czech O-Tour – orienteering event in terrains of WOC 2021 for everyone. Probably, the best courses were in stage 6 – first part: http://vagval.snattringesk.se/show_map.php?user=Vojta&map=1331, second part: http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=328780 (I can send you also in one file). There are a lot of big route choices at very short legs – maybe could be also use for Route to Christmas. It was setted by Pavel Kubat, exmember of Czech Team and participant of WOC 2021 which was held here and win Course of the year 2021.

    Price: Madeira O-Camp

    Thank you!

    • Thanks for the suggestion, Jan! For now I added the second part, but if you can send me the complete course (jan@kocbach.net) I can replace it. It sure looks like an interesting course. It would have been interesting for Route to Christmas as well I think, but there are very few GPS-routes, so tricky to make a good assessment of the routechoices…

  49. The Swedish Championship in long distans this year, in Bjursås is probably one of the most challenging Championships in many years.
    If people agree a trip to swiss in July would be greate:)

  50. Hi Jan,

    I would like to suggest course from Czech championship in sprint relay, placed at Prague suburb Stodulky. It has few tricky routechoices and it has great atmosphere as it was Czech champs.
    Map: https://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/private/20220515DH21_1/
    I think that route from 9th to 10th control is suitable for Route to Christmas calendar too

    Prize I would want if I win: OCAD (or Lipica)

  51. Steffen Hartmann

    I would like to nominate the AlpenAdria-Cup Sprint
    Competition takes place in Munich Olympic Village. The map has a lot of multilevel and the course offers challenging route choices.

  52. Hello Jan!

    I would like to nominate Gdańsk City Race 2022 – stage 2 (city middle distance). It was held in Zaspa district, on newly made map (terrain not used for orienteering before). Zaspa is a district uniquely engineered and constructed in the shape of honey combs, where you have to be focused both on many route choices, but also on the map orientation and its details, too. There are many green and open areas and in some parts there are newer multilevel buildings, what course setter was able to show on longer courses.
    Here is the link to Men’s Elite course:

    Prize: Czech O-Tour 2023

    All the best,

    • Thanks for the suggestion, Dominika. It looks like a course with many interesting legs, and changing direction and leg length all the way.

  53. Hello!

    I would like to nominate EOC mens relay course.

    All the other courses in this years EOC were suboptimal for various reasons (TV demands, event center position, unfair runnability for early starters, simple planning mistakes etc) but I think the relay was spot-on.
    This terrain is excellent and for the relay some of the best parts were possible to be used without compromising anything (still have good TV coverage and run through).
    Because of the lower visibility it was possible to take full advantage of the forkings and everyone was forced to do their own mapreading.

    Prize: Madeira O-Camp


    • Thanks, Uku-Laur – this is the second course from EOC 2022 suggested here. I relay was really enjoayble to watch, and I also think the courses were good.

  54. Veselina Zhelyazkova

    Definitely WOC sprint final 2022 -http://3drerun.worldofo.com/2d/?server=em.event3.tractrac.com&eventid=45e61220-d395-013a-7436-021250fcae8c&liveid=391c0580-d42a-013a-b296-021250fcae8c

    Prize:Madeira O-camp

  55. I would like to suggest 2 races from the World Uni Champs organized in Switzerland:
    sprintrelay-many interesting routechoices, where you could gain a lot of time by making an own plan and not just blindly following other runners around you. Also quite tricky orienteering compared to sprintrelay courses, organisers put a lot of effort into this race with the many artificial barriers. http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/20220819_WUC_SR-W4/
    middle distance-runnability and technical focus is varying a lot during this course, it wass a really great middle distance in my opinion. http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/20220820_WUC_MiddleM/
    Leg 10-11 from the middle and leg 2-3 and 7-8 from the sprintrelay could be great for a Route to Christmas leg as well
    Prize: Lipica Open

    • Thanks a lot, Zsofia – both great courses which were off my radar. Nice to see them here again!

  56. WOC knock-out sprint finals were very interesting compared to other such races.
    Maps: https://www.woc2022.dk/knock-out-sprint-fredericia/
    Interested in Kapa3.

    • Thanks, Marek! The semi-final has already been nominated earlier. Do you think the final itself was much better – and why?

  57. I want to nominate the courses in OO-Cup in Umea. Personally I really enjoyed the courses on the 4th day. runnable terrain, good routechoices, technical controls (and nice weather):

    Prize should I win: OO.Cup of course

  58. I would like to nominate course from Latvian indoor orienterring cup with challenging muti-level orienteering.
    The web site for all the races is https://telpuorientesanas.lv/where for every race there are links to the maps under words “Kartes A distance, B distance, Open”.
    The one that I would like to nominate is from Arena Rīga (largest sports arēnā in Latvia) https://telpuorientesanas.lv/wp-content/uploads/2022/11/ARiga0002_B-scaled.jpg

    • Thanks, Renars. Second indoor course suggested, and I think this is even better than the previous one (although the “terrain” probably made it eaasier to set a very interesting course here)…

  59. Hello!
    In my opinion, the most interesting distance is the Pomeranian Sprint Cup Stage 4:
    That’s really interesting. This is more of an entertainment than a pure orienteering. But it is precisely such distances that cause delight at the finish line, when the head is ready to explode from a huge number of difficult route choices. Of course, I prefer orienteering in the forest, but every runners must run such a distance!

    Prize: Madeira O-camp

  60. The best course that I’ve ran this year was the JWOC2022 Middle distance.

    The course set by Bruno Nazario was very well planned. Starts with a pretty long and fast leg, but then it continues straight to a very technical demanding terrain in a steep and tricky slopes.

    After that short loop the course again coming to the open and fast area, when you really have to do a switch in the head and pushing hard. But not so long time, because very quickly the course coming to another technical part in the downhill, which requires high focus and contact with the map. Afterwards there is another long and decisive leg to the 9th control, which you have to plan it well, making sure you’re crossing the big clifs at the right point and not getting stuck there.

    Through the end the course coming into the most challenging terrain. A very green and confusing area with a poor runnability and visibility. Which makes everything much more difficult. And when this area come at the very end of the course, when you’re very tired, it was almost impossible to go through this section without making any mistake. And the ones who managed to do so placed really high in the results list.

    In conclusion, this course was definitely the best course that I’ve ran this year. Both because the unique terrain and the amazing course planning which requires using a lot of different techniques and doing those “switch” in the head while moving between the different sections.
    And in my opinion, this course was not only the best course the I’ve ran, but also the best overall course of the year!

    Prize: Ocad

    Link to the map: https://events.loggator.com/2022JWOCmiddleM20#!

    • Thanks, Preleg! Now nearly all the JWOC-courses have been nominated, these courses must surely have put a mark on the map!

  61. Hi! I would like to nominate the Norwegian Cup middle distance in Konnerud, M21E. It was a special race as Audun Heimdal was one of the main course planners, the M21E course in particular, and alot of runners came there to run in his memory.
    When Audun makes a course it is, of course, a very good one, with a perfect mix of intense short legs and some decisive route-choices, and with runners splitting up on almost every leg. Cool terrain with rather fast ground and mixed visibility

  62. I’d like to suggest the urban relay from the sprint portion of JWOC in the summer. https://events.loggator.com/2022jwocURBANRwomen1

    This course is truly one of the best of the year but what sets it apart is the circumstances under which it was organized.

    Bruno Nazario, Rafael Miguel, and the rest of the JWOC organizing team had one of the most devasting things happen right at the last minute with the news that no forest races could be held during JWOC in the summer.

    But they rallied and with a lot of energy and positive spirit put on the sprint and two additional races that were truly world-class on short notice. Their attitude was impressive to see.

    Rafael Miguel did an amazing job as the course planner for this course. It includes lots of really interesting route choice, has a great spectator loop through the middle, and some nice forking. What is, perhaps most impressive is that with only a few days notice to organzie this the organizers got special permission for the arena (previous maps had that field as olive green out of bounds) as well as for the area where the first controls are. I think this area with the first controls was a seniors home and not only was the area around the home used but the lobby was opened up so athletes could run into the courtyard. I don’t know what Rafael had to offer to the people that ran the home but it made for a special surprise early in the course. I think many teams predicted that the area around the home might be used (it was previously mapped with olive green) but I doubt many thought the courtyard would be used! And not only that but Rafael did extra mapping to make all of this happen!

    In case anyone doesn’t know this was one of the maps teams were training on before JWOC so to take an area that teams knew and to then turn it into a high-quality race like this with unexpected twists is special.

    Thank you for such a special creative JWOC in difficult circumstances!

    Prize would be the Madeira O-Camp or the Lipica Open which I would donate to a member of Team Canada.

    • Just when I thought all JWOC courses/races had been nominated, we got another one there…

  63. Hi Jan!
    I would like to suggest the European Championships, specifically for the women’s middle distance race, firstly because of the vegetation that required a constant struggle, also because it was the first WC forest race and finally because of the great result of Simona Aebersold and especially of ‘Evely Kaasiku and Venla Harju. That a super orienteer like Tove Alexanderson had so many mistakes shows how successful the race was.

    It was very exciting to follow it online

    Prize: Kapa 2023

    • Thanks a lot for the suggestion! We already have one of the EOC Middle courses nominated – the men’s EOC middle. I think that one of the courses from EOC Middle is enough – is there a special reason (seen from the course point of view) that the men’s course should be replaced with the women’s course?

      • You are right Jan, with 1 nominated race is enough, there is no reason at the technical level of the race to replace one with the other

  64. Michal Krajčík

    I suggest Slovak middle distance champs. Course consisted from 3 different terrain types (steep rocky slopes, vegetation details and terrain details in downhill section). Legs were challenging and it was easy to make mistake in the circle if you did not read map precisely. Course was harder from control to control, when tirednes of runners grew continually, so it was easy to lost the race on last few controls.
    Link: http://www.adam-chromy.cz/domains/adam-chromy.cz/map-archive/show_map.php?user=filip&map=4539

    Prize: OCAD

    • Thanks, Michal, great to see a course from an area a bit outside the “mainstream”. Looks like a really nice and interesting course!

  65. Hi!
    I’d like to suggest the semi-final of the Italian Knock Out Championships, held in Ancona at the end of April.
    The course was super tricky and fun, even more with some other people around running with you.

    Here the 3 course choices

    Prize: KOW

  66. http://3drerun.worldofo.com/?id=-16951594&type=info
    I think that the route (and terrain) from Great Britain deserves an honorable mention! Exactly from Wales where the biggest sports competition took place: JK 2022.
    The arena on the map doesn’t look difficult, but it was very interesting. In addition, a great route that required full concentration, fast legs and “flow”.
    Prize: Madeira O-Camp 2023 + Madeira O-Festival 2023
    Best regards

  67. I liked Orienteering world cup round 2 middle, I enjoyed with very exciting race. Tricky and thought terrain and some results surprise.
    Map: http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/2022eocMFma/
    Prize: Lipica Open

    • Thanks a lot, Sebastian! Already nominated (as well as the women’s course) – an excellent choice!

  68. I was the course setter for the final stage of Gotland 3-Days which was a long distance with a chase start.
    I put lots of work in to the course setting in order to have maximal stress level on the runner with the stage having a chase start where first to the goal line would win. The forest is extremely easy run. Run times in H21 Elite was sub 5 min/km for a +17 km course. with the open forest and good visibility as well as flat ground the trick here is to lure the runners in to them trying to run too fast for their own good as many will instead loose contact with the map and then make fatal mistakes in towards the control as you need a distinct point of attack.
    Many made mistakes but Gustav Bergman showed a masterclass performance.

  69. This year Maximus O Meeting was one of the highlights of the winter season, and the Middle distance WRE in “El Fresne” (Hoyo de Pinares – Spain) was, without a doubt, a great terrain, map, and course. All the runners loved it! Unfortunately, a big fire last summer burned completely the area, so we only can keep those beautiful rocks and pine forest in our memories. It was a very special one, and I believe it deserves to be one of the highlighted ones this year :-)


    • Thanks, Raul! This went into spam – but in the meantime it was also suggested by Pablo below, so it is now already included.

  70. Hi Jan ,

    I’d like to nominate a long distance course I ran in Selge. (Antalya O-Fest 2022, Stage4, M40/M35/M20/M21A)
    Link: (https://www.livelox.com/Classes/MapImage?classIds=542419)
    Before the race I had done quite good preparations (watched headcam videos and previous maps) so I somewhat knew what kind of terrain it would be: demanding, beautiful, unique terrain with extreme stone labyrinths. But I hadn’t realised the height and steepness of the slopes. So, the extreme physical element was a big surprise for me. Still, pure enjoyable, thrilling orienteering from start to finish. Even though I did some 10+min mistakes during the race, I was speechless at the finish, Wow, totally amazing! I recommend!

    Leg 4-5 might be the best leg in this course and 12-13 also (where I lost about 6min)

    Prize: Kainuu

    • Thanks, Jarkko! I did run in this terrain once, and it was truly exceptional (and also exhausting). Looks like they managed to make a very good course this time.

  71. Hello!
    On October 1, the first championship of Ukraine this year was held in Kyiv

    Link: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1xXlp3GHKq4fcYOXV2ofXWntZqHWbrGJ9/view?usp=sharing

    Welcome to Ukraine after the war.
    Make Ukraine great again!

    Prize: OOCup – July 26th – 30th 2023 (Slovenia)

    Thank you!

  72. The best courses I’ve ran this year are from Maximus O Meeting, in Spain. Both courses were set by Raúl Ferra.

    The middle distance took place at El Hoyo de Pinares. Beautiful course with one really long leng and then some short legs in the tricky areas. Unfortunately, this area was burned down in the summer fires.

    The sprint took place at San Juan de la Nava. This is the best sprint map I’ve ever run, tricky, hilly, long legs navigating through small streets, short legs going up and down stairs. The course setter did an amazing job with a demanding sprint, not being able to run full speed because you had to read a lot the map (the winning pace was over 4:00/km).

    Sprint map: https://www.facebook.com/photo?fbid=10159079240921656&set=pcb.10159079251746656
    Middle map: https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=10159079240721656&set=pcb.10159079251746656

    Prize: OCAD or OOCup