An exciting summer series of social orienteering

Samantha Clark and Maddie Mear enjoying participating in the OBOP Summer Series at The Lakes. Photo: Supplied

For those who would like to have a go at orienteering, there are social orienteering events planned across both Tauranga and Rotorua cities over the next few weeks.

The Wednesday night Summer Series social orienteering events are planned to be suitable for everyone from beginners and families through to competitive orienteers.

“On our long summer evenings come and enjoy a fun run or walk around one of Orienteering BOP’s urban orienteering maps in Tauranga,” says an OBOP spokesperson.

“This is suitable for all ages and abilities and great to do with family and/or friends. We will also be offering a special school competition this year as part of the series.”

The first event takes place in Bethlehem on February 10, followed by Papamoa on February 17, Mount Maunganui on February 24, and Otumoetai on March 3. Rotorua events will be held on February 11 at Rotorua Government Gardens, February 17 at Tihiotonga Centennial Park, February 24 at the Redwoods, at Kuirau Park on March 3, and at Hannahs Bay on March 10.

For Tauranga, participants need to register from 5pm, with a mass start at 5.30pm and late starters up to 6pm.

For Rotorua participants need to register from 4.30pm, and then self-start any time from 4.30pm to 5.30pm.

An inexpensive entry fee makes it even more enjoyable and a lovely way to explore the local area at whatever pace a person wishes to go. The fees are $5 child, $10 adult, and $20 family with discounts for members and concession cards available.

OBOP organises and runs navigational events across the Bay of Plenty Region including foot orienteering, rogaining, mountain bike orienteering, and navigation clinics and training.

A rogaine is a type of orienteering. Competitors have a set period of time to reach as many marked points - called controls - as possible. There will be up to 30 controls at each event. Each control is worth ten points. Arriving late to the finish over the set time results in ten points being deducted per minute or part minute late. The runner or walker with the most points wins.

The OBOP Summer Nav rogaines are 60 minutes long and the areas include urban areas, parks and some forest.

The OBOP club is run by volunteers who are passionate about the sport and the potential benefits it gives to people and communities - adventure, fun, health and wellbeing, confidence building, appreciation for the environment.

Events are suitable for all ages, levels of fitness and experience, with the main goal being to give people a sense of adventure and fun in an outdoor setting. The Bay of Plenty has a fantastic range of maps in varied terrain, from urban parks and street areas to forests and farmland.

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