Boggs '14 A-meet
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Boggs '14 A-meet

Boggs Mountain State Forest

Date: May 30 - Jun. 1, 2014
Location: Cobb, CA
Event Director: - 408.354.1686
Course Setters: Heidi Cusworth, Bill Cusworth; Nick Corsano (Trail-O)
Type: A; OUSA sanctioned Sprint, Middle, and Long courses, and a national ranking Trail-O course

Trail-O Course Setter's Notes

By Nick Corsano

Welcome to the Boggs Mountain Trail Orienteering national ranking event! If you are new to Trail-O, please read the introduction below. Also, note that there will be a short model course for practice.

The course is set along well-graded dirt roads in a fairly level section of the forest.

   Length    Climb   Timed Controls   Controls   Time Limit
   2.5 km    50 m          2             13      2 hours  

It is an "out and back" course. You set out heading west along the road. Controls 1–7 are located on the north side of the road. At control 7, you will turn around and head back along the same road. Controls 8–13 are located on the south side of the road. This means that your next control is always on the right side of the road. There will be water at the turnaround point.

Although you will pass most controls twice, the rules require that the controls be done in order. There might be a monitor on the course to enforce this rule.

Decision points are designated with a Trail-O placard and the control number. We plan for the placards to be mounted on orange traffic cones, but that could change.

We are using the new 1:5000 ISSOM map with 5 m contours, also used for the Friday Sprint course. For a detailed analysis of the features of the map, please read Bill and Heidi Cusworth's mapping notes here.

For our purposes, the main differences between the Sprint/Trail-O map and the Long/Middle map are:

  1. Correct scaling of point features for a 1:5000 map.
  2. Representation of roads and trails. In particular, the main dirt roads are shown as double-dashed black lines with brown infill.

You are required to stay on these main dirt roads (those shown as a double-dashed black line with brown infill). You may travel on any such road, with one exception, where the limit of travel will be marked on the map with the uncrossable-boundary symbol (thick purple line), and on the ground with either a length of caution tape or a line of flour. There are a couple of short spurs off the main road mapped the same way, which quickly turn into either footpaths or rides. It is your responsibility not to travel beyond these transition points​—​they are generally obvious in the terrain.

The terrain is forested, and this limits visibility. Consequently, most of the controls are fairly close to the road. Still, it might be difficult to see all the bags at once from even a short distance away from the decision-point marker.

Model Course

There will be two model controls set up in the vicinity of the campground. They will be available beginning mid-afternoon Friday. The map for the model course is available in this file (PDF/180KB).


The main hazard on the course is traffic. Vehicles are allowed on all the dirt roads at Boggs, and now and then one comes through. Most people drive cautiously, but be aware. There are also occasional equestrians. Please give horses room to pass safely.


The route from the assembly area to the Trail-O check-in point is about 600 meters, and will be streamered. Plan to arrive at the check-in point by your assigned start time. There you will receive your control card, and be directed to the first timed control. From there, you will be directed to the second timed control. After completing the second timed control, the monitor will write the time on your control card. That is your official start time for purposes of the two-hour time limit. Proceed about 40 m further along the road, and pick up a map from the bin on the right-hand side of the road. Please write your bib number on the back of the map. The Start triangle on your map is located at this point. The Finish of the course is back at the check-in point.

Solution sheets will be available at the check-in point after all competitors have started.

Complaints and Protests

Complaints or protests may be filed with the event staff in accordance with Orienteering USA rules. According to the rules, a competitor may be subject to a half-point penalty for each protested control that is not upheld by the jury.

Recreational Course

Those who would like to try out Trail-O more casually are welcome to participate in a recreational class. Just come to the check-in point and pay your fee. Recreational participants will not do the timed controls, will not have their results recorded, and do not have the right to protest.

Trail-O Instruction

For those unfamiliar with Trail-O, there will be instruction available during the weekend. More information to come later.

Introduction to Trail Orienteering

Trail Orienteering was developed as an alternative to classic foot orienteering in which people can compete equally regardless of mobility limitations. Instead of navigating cross-country to locate control points, you are required to stay on certain roads and trails (defined in the Course Setter's Notes), and solve challenging problems in map/terrain interpretation.

Your map will look like a classic foot orienteering course, with a Start, a series of numbered control circles, and a Finish. Control descriptions (a clue sheet) will be printed on the map. Differences between a Trail-O clue sheet and a regular clue sheet are described below. You will travel along the permitted roads and trails until you reach a decision point or "viewing station", designated by a small placard on the side of the road, with the control number. The viewing stations are not shown on your map. In the terrain, you will see a set of one to five bags. Your task is to decide which, if any, of the bags is located at the center of the control circle and is correctly described by the clue.

You will have a punch card with six columns for each control, labeled A, B, C, D, E, and Z. From the viewing station, you will be able to see all of the bags. Think of them as labeled from left to right as A, B, C, etc. A short distance from the viewing station will be a stand with a punch, where you will punch your card with your choice. If the left-most bag is the correct solution, then you will punch A; if the second from the left, punch B, etc. If none of the bags is correct, punch Z. Once you punch your card, you cannot change your choice, so be careful.

You are allowed to travel along the permitted roads and trails to get additional information or other views, but a friendly warning​—​perspective changes from different vantage points, so make sure your choice is valid at the viewing station. And remember that "none of the above" is always an option.

On your clue sheet, you will see the usual symbols for each control. However, the second and eighth (last) columns are used differently. The second column shows how many control bags there are to select from. For example, if there are four bags, the column will show A–D. The (optional) final column can be used to clarify the general direction in which you will be looking from the viewing station to the controls. For example, a downward pointing arrow indicates that you will be looking south, so the approach to the viewing station is to the north of the control.

Although trail orienteering is designed so that people with physical limitations can compete equally with others, there is still a time component. First, there is an overall time limit published for your course. You will have one point deducted from your score for each five minutes or fraction that you are over two hours. For example, two hours and one second​—​one point deducted, two hours and thirteen minutes​—​three points deducted. Second, there will be two timed controls at the beginning of your course. You will not get your regular map until after you complete the timed controls. The timed controls serve as tie-breakers when two or more competitors achieve the same overall score.

At a timed control, you will sit in a chair and hand your punch card to the monitor. The monitor will tell you how many control bags there are and ask you if you can see them all. If you cannot locate them all, you are permitted to ask the monitor for assistance. Once you indicate that you see all of the control bags, you will be handed a sheet of paper on a firm surface, and the timing starts. The paper will contain a map section, correctly oriented, with a single control circle; a single clue; and a row of possible answers (for example, if there are four control bags, there will be boxes labeled A, B, C, D). You are to determine which bag is correct, and point to the corresponding letter. As soon as you point to an answer, the timing stops and the monitor will mark your choice on your punch card.

At each timed control, you have up to a minute to make your selection. The monitor will warn you ten seconds before time elapses. If you do not make a choice within a minute, it counts as an incorrect choice. Also, you have a maximum of thirty seconds from the moment you sit to successfully locate all of the control bags before you will be handed a map.

At timed controls only, "none of the above" is not an option. One of the visible control bags will always be the correct choice. We are a little kinder to you at the timed controls because the penalty for making an incorrect choice is more severe. Not only do you not get any credit for a correct choice, but you also get a one-minute time penalty.