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Indiana Rogaines for this Spring and Fall

Do local orienteering meets seem too short and easy? Would you like to take your navigation skills to the next level? Are you tired of the flat, briar-filled woods around Chicago and would like to try the sport in beautiful open woods spread out over the rolling hills of central Indiana? Would you like to have a friend to set the pace and talk with during the event? Have you ever wanted to stop, enjoy the view and have lunch while orienteering?

If the answer to these questions is yes, then you should consider either the Indiana Crossroads 6 &12-hour Rogaines on April 5, or the Louisville 8- and 24-hour Rogaines on October 11. All Rogaines will be in the large Morgan-Monroe State Forest in central Indiana east of Bloomington.

Rogaining is an orienteering score event for teams of 2-5 people. Each competitor is given a large-scale 1:24,000+ USGS-style topographic map marked with the location of a lot of controls. Each control is worth points depending on distance from the start, navigational difficulty, and scenic location. The objective is to collect as many points as possible in a given amount of time, anywhere from 3 to 24 hours. Teams can visit controls in any order, which puts a strong emphasis on good route choices. If you are late in returning to the starting area, you will lose many points. The winner is the team that collects the most points. Teams' elapsed time on the course decides all ties.

Rogaining differs from orienteering in several ways. Rogaining uses standard topographic maps which differ from O-maps in style, scale, and accuracy: some are 50-years old, show no vegetation differences, and omit many roads and trails. As a result, control location is usually easier to find than in orienteering races. Rogaining emphasizes social interaction. Like orienteering, one can be as competitive as one wants to be. Rogaining tends to focus more on the enjoyment of the day, and most competitors walk the majority of the distance at a leisurely pace.

For the 12- and 24-hour Rogaines, night orienteering is part of the challenge. Small headlamps can be packed for evening hours, but be sure to bring plenty of batteries and a back-up light; getting lost in the dark woods, with no way to see your next step, can be unpleasant and dangerous. The October event will be at the full moon, but the ICO April event will be held when there is no moon.

The registration deadline for the ICO Rogaine is March 15th. See the ICO website for more details and an entry form, or contact Frank Baukert via e-mail or at (317) 291-6758.

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