ONZ Compass Point – May 2020
By ONZ Online Coordinator - Roger Woodroofe - Fri 29 May 2020 8:31pm
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Orienteering NZ - Find Your Adventure

In this issue:


GM’s Foreword

Hi all,

In recent weeks we have entered level two.  For most orienteers this has had little impact as we have not been able to attend the events we have become accustomed to because of the 10 person gathering limits.

On Monday this changed with the government announcement that the maximum number increasing to one hundred people as of Friday 29th May at 12noon.  With new measures in place and a date by which Cabinet will make a decision about moving to level one by, we are now able to reschedule events .


Christo Peters

View from the Chair

It has been fantastic to come out of the level 3 and 4 restrictions and see clubs putting on events again, with many trying new approaches in order to fit around the level 2 guidelines. The response by clubs and orienteers to the crisis has been fantastic, and as the national body representing the sport, it really feels like we have all done our bit to undertake the distancing and hygiene practices that have been needed for us as a country to get to where we are now at today. Well done and thanks to everyone for doing your bit through this time. Whilst we are not at level 1 or 0 quite yet, it certainly feels like we are close to it. The easing of restrictions further will see major events come back onto the calendar hopefully in the not too distant future.

Obviously the COVID-19 crisis has had a major impact on the sport; income for clubs will have had a hit, and with that income for the national body. There may also be challenges around membership, with membership renewals negatively impacted whilst the calendars have been empty of events. And the loss of major and minor events at the start of the season will definitely be felt by athletes, who will be missing the momentum we would normally be enjoying in this part of the season. However whilst these challenges exist, we are well positioned as a sport to deal with them and ONZ will be engaging with clubs to look at what kind of support is needed to strengthen the sport and come out of this in a healthy state.

Our first priority is to see major events back on the calendar, and we are working closely with the relevant clubs who are planning for these. At this point in time we are expecting the NZ Foot O Champs (Nationals), and NZ Secondary Schools Champs to take place this year. The details of these will be shared in a separate communication very shortly. Oceania is also looking promising, however will be contingent on the borders being open between NZ and Australia so won’t be confirmed until we know more on that situation in the coming months. Our advice to clubs and orienteers is to build flexibility into plans and to be prepared to make changes in the event of going back into lockdown. That said it is looking for good for NZ and arguably we are better positioned than just about any other country for safely opening the sport up in the near future.

ONZ is also focused on supporting clubs in other ways, and the O-Chat information sharing platform (using Slack) will be exploited more in the coming months as a way of sharing resources and knowledge that can help clubs running events and other aspects of the sport. If you haven’t used this yet, make sure you do – you can find it by following the link on the ONZ website.

Lastly, we had our first Council meeting following the AGM and welcomed our two new Council members – Guy Cory Wright and Tom Reynolds. There was a lot of business covered. However it is worth noting one topic which the Council will be exploring more going forwards (and engaging clubs on) which is how we approach Schools orienteering and also work with commercial operators in the sport. We are very aware that there are tensions around these areas, and also opportunities to grow and strengthen the sport if we develop the right approach. So ONZ is keen to form a clearer view and position on this in the coming months, and will be engaging clubs and other stakeholders in due course to navigate a way forwards.

In the meantime I am really looking forwards to getting to some more events soon, and hopefully connect with many of you again and catch up – it has been a while!

Stay safe and happy running

Pete Swanson 027 302 4863

Covid-19 Novel Coronavirus Information and Updates

Covid-19 Information and Updates

Monday’s announcement by the Government said that “From 12 noon Friday 29 May, gatherings can be held with up to 100 people“.  For Orienteering this is great news as it is a big improvement from the previous 10 person limit. 

Cabinet has said that it will again review the settings of Alert Level 2 on 8 June and have agreed that no later than 22 June, they will consider a move to Alert Level 1. 

Below are the updated Alert Level Guidelines These guidelines and the club event guidelines can both be found on the ONZ website:   https://www.orienteering.org.nz/news/updated-covid-19-alert-levels-and-club-guidelines-may-26-2020/

Club Spotlight – PAPO

The seeds for PAPO were sown with a promotional flurry by John and Robyn Davies, on an NZOF mission in December 1976. They enlisted the support of the Christchurch City Council, quickly produced some maps and organised three “rallies”. The first was in South Hagley Park on 11 January 1977, coinciding with the city’s Family Leisure Week. Radio 3ZB broadcast from the second event at Bottle Lake and The Press and suburban papers gave the sport the type of coverage we’d now sell the equipment trailer for. An informal meeting of those interested was held on February 22, an interim committee was appointed, and three more events were held throughout March.

On 20 April 1977, Paul McOscar from the Christchurch City Council chaired a second, and more formal, meeting. From the 22 who attended, a Canterbury Orienteering Club committee was elected.

During that year, events were held at Hagley Park, Victoria Park, Spencer Par, Van Asch Farm, South Brighton Domain, Mt Grey and Bottle Lake. Twenty years later six of these seven are still in use!  Early control cards being done on a Banda machine, then glued to cardboard and perforated on a sewing machine while early clippers were made using old gramophone needles!

At the second Annual General Meeting on 27 April 1978, the new club name of “Peninsula and Plains Orienteers” was voted in, though not unanimously.

The first Canterbury Champs were held in 1980.  Two years, in 1982 PAPO’s hosted the first South Island Champs  as part of the Canterbury Champs – the club’s first badge event. Over two years the size of the Canterbury Champs doubled and the club training was at the limits of their experience. At this stage Eileen and Graham Frith came to the rescue and organised an excellent training event on what they had been taught in Europe and Scandinavia.  By 1984 the South Island and Canterbury Champs had grown to become separate events.

The annual Forest Fun Run began in 1985 and continued successfully for twelve years. In 1992 the event was extended to include a mountain bike event.  In 1986 the club was thriving with club membership increasing from 97 to 186!
PAPO members competed nationally right from the start and the first group competed overseas, in Australia, in 1980. But despite the enthusiasm, national success was slow to come. It was not until 1986 that PAPO produced its first national champions when Roger Thomas won M21A (not 21E) and Jenni Adams won W15A. The following year the first PAPO members to represent NZ, Jenni Adams, Joy Talbot and Chrissie Williams, were selected for the ANZ Challenge. All three were again selected for Tasmania in 1988.

From 1997 women headed the club with Jo Guest (Wilson) as president for three years and Chrissie Williams for the next two. It was during this time that PAPO was involved in the 1989 South Island Moro 7-Day and then organised an Easter 3-day in 1990. PAPO organised three of the events for the Moro 7-day festival, Dunedin and Southland sharing the other four. With almost a thousand competitors it stands as one of PAPO’s biggest undertakings.

With Jan Davies (Harrison) as president in 1994, a generational cycle has been completed. When her parents John and Robyn established PAPO in 1977, Jan was a nine-year-old making forts in the pines. In 1997 Jan and Ian’s child Sophie heralded a third generation of members.

In 1995, the Silva NZ Secondary School Champs was hosted and, within months of the Southern Orienteering Series, Dave Laurie organised and Peter Squires planned the 2nd NZ Rogaining Championships, at Craigieburn. Chrissie Williams was again coordinator for the NZ Secondary School Champs.

The late 1990s and early 2000s saw a number of key changes with long serving committee member Stuart Payne becoming the General Manager of the NZOF.  During this period the Bee family was responsible for the club’s website – the first for any New Zealand orienteering club. 

By 2007 the Christchurch City Council sponsored Free Orienteering Day had reached a size of over 1000 participants.  The event had started humbly ten years earlier with around one hundred participants.  Large numbers of non-members also flocked to other club-run events light the Midweek Twilight series and Nigh Navigation. 

PAPO has been one of the country’s largest clubs for more than two decades. Between 2007 and 2011 PAPO it was the county’s second largest club narrowly behind Hawkes Bay.  Today the club is the largest club outside Auckland with approximately 215 members.  PAPO is not shy about putting their hand up for hosting major events having hosted the National Championships in 2019 and currently preparing (Coivid- dependent) to host the Oceania Championships in 2021.

Thank you to Stuart Payne for his history of PAPO from which this was adapted.

NZ Orienteering Champs 2020 Update

Nationals 2020 Update

Orienteering Wellington and Orienteering New Zealand have tentatively rescheduled the 2020 NZ National Orienteering Championships (Nationals) for Labour Weekend (Friday 23 to Monday 26 October 2020). This is dependent on all of New Zealand being at COVID-19 Alert Level 1 or lower between Friday 31 July and Friday 23 October.    

More information will follow over the next few weeks as details of potentially rescheduling the event are resolved. However, we encourage those hoping to come to Nationals to mark your diaries for Labour Weekend but hold off on booking travel until event entries officially re-open. Please keep an eye on the event website for updates https://events.orienteering.org.nz/nationals/

Oceania Orienteering NZ 2021 9-17 January Update

Waiting game

28/05/2020  “It’s spookily quiet in the forest and sounds from the farms in the valley below seem to travel a long way”, says Michael Croxford. Michael has been working on mapping in the middle of nowhere with only some friendly farm noises, the odd native bird and a couple of rabbits to keep him company.  Visits to Oceania terrain were on hold in the highest Lockdown, but the Laidmore forest was on the top of the list to start mapping once regional travel was enabled.  We are looking forward to hearing more to whet our appetite as we wait in anticipation for announcements on the availability of future trans-Tasman travel.

So what is the terrain like? Michael describes it as  “pine forest that is clean and very runnable with rock features scattered across the slopes however, there is some reduction of visibility at times so runners will definitely need to stay in map contact.” 

It is sounding like the perfect orienteering playground for Oceania 2021.

Thank you to PAPO for this update.  Please keep an eye on the official Oceania Website for ongoing updates – http://oceaniao.nz/newsupdates/

Major Events

Major Events

We continue to work with event providers and other key organisations to update you on the current status of events during these difficult times.  Below is the most up-to-date information we have:

New Zealand Major Events Calendar

We are working with Hawkes Bay and Counties Manukau Clubs to reschedule both the New Zealand and North Island Secondary School Championships.  Conversations with School Sport New Zealand suggest that both events are likely to be fully sanctioned.  Current thinking is that both events will take place in the Sept/Oct school holidays.  This information is intended only as an indication as ONZ is working with both clubs behind the scenes to ensure the events will go ahead.

International Events Calendar

Current updates from the IOF:

  • (i) The 2020 World Orienteering Championships (WOC) has been cancelled.
  • (ii) A decision regarding  2020 Junior World Orienteering Championships (JWOC) is expected to be made in July.  Currently contingency plans involve rescheduling in October.
  • (iii) The 2020 Orienteering World Cup (OWC) has been cancelled.
  • (iv) The 2020 World University Orienteering Championships (WUOC) has been cancelled.
  • (v)  The 2020 Australian Championships has been cancelled meaning that there will be no Southern Cross Challenge this year.
  • (vi) The 2020 World Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships (WMTBOC) is currently scheduled to take place in Portugal between October 2 & 8.

Manager and Head Coaches needed for the 2020 Junior Camp

Manager and Head Coaches needed for the 2020 Junior Camp

The Junior Camp is our national development camp. It takes place in December and is run the week after our National High-Performance Camp. The Camp Manager and Head Coaches are essential roles without which the camp can not take place. ONZ invites all interested individuals to apply for these positions.  Any questions about the positions can be sent to the http://gm@orienteering.org.nz This year both camps are being held in Nelson with the support of the Nelson Orienteering Club.

Applications are invited for the following roles:

2020 ONZ Junior Camp Manager

The Junior Camp Manager role is appointed annually – The 2020 Junior Camp is being hosted by the Nelson Orienteering Club 15-20 or (13-18) December 2020 (TBC)

  • The Camp Manager has the overall responsibility for the smooth running of the camp. This includes (and can be delegated); timeline coordination, budget management, child welfare and discipline, crisis and risk management, first aid, receive medical and consent forms etc, confirm appropriate logistic arrangements have been made.
  • Organising the supervision and pastoral care outside of coaching time (to give the coaching team a break)
  • Be responsible for risk management for the in-field exercises and must use Orienteering NZ SMP System with HARM form/s completed, in liaison with the National Coaching Coordinator. This includes a Risk Management briefing for all at training sites
  • First aid provision confirmed
  • Overall camp report (including accidents & Incidents) completed.

Full Position Description: ONZ Junior Camp Role Descriptions (PDF 198KB)
Applications close: Friday 17 July 2020 email to gm@orienteering.org.nz

2020 ONZ Junior Camp Lead Coach

The Junior Camp Lead Coach role is appointed annually – The 2020 Junior Camp is being hosted by the Nelson Orienteering Club 15-20 or (13-18) December 2020 (TBC)

  • This role is to design the training schedule for the week, plan the courses, evening presentations and other social activities. This is done in liaison with the Camp Manager, National Coaching Coordinator and the Supporting club liaison.
  • Organise all the field activities and logistics with the assistance of the National Coaching Coordinator, Supporting Club Liaison.
  • Recruit the coaching team drawn from the U23 squad attending their camp in liaison with Performance Leader. Up to 12 coaches in total (including Lead Coach and National Coaching Coordinator) are required.
  • The Lead Coach must have coached at a high level and have experience at designing a programme of exercises for the ability range at camp.
  • Experience with managing large groups is useful.
  • For the Lead Coach in particular, the following will apply Preference will be given to someone residing in or near the region hosting the Camp.
  • Draft training exercises to be completed by the end of September with possible assistance of selected U23 squad members.

Full Position Description: ONZ Junior Camp Role Descriptions (PDF 198KB)
Applications close: Friday 17 July 2019 email to gm@orienteering.org.nz

OChat NZ ochatnz.slack.com New Sharing Platform

A reminder to join our new sharing platform – Slack

ONZ has established a platform for clubs and orienteers to share news, views, ideas and resources. This includes (but is definitely not limited to) topics related to COVID-19, use of app based event tools such as Maprun, and even updates.

The platform we are using is called Slack, which many people may already be familiar with. Anyone can register and login to Slack to get access to this, by clicking on the following link:


We urge as many people as possible to use this and start sharing ideas, tools and resources which may be of interest to other clubs and orienteers. The success of the platform will rely on participation and sharing.  Once you are logged in, you can also directly invite others onto the platform as well. ONZ will be working on developing some resources in the coming weeks and months which people may find of value, and we will be communicating more on this in due course. In particular we will be keen to hear from people who may be interested in producing content, and who may have skills and knowledge suited to the training/learning area.

Medal Survey

Have your say

ONZ wants your opinion about the importance of having medals at a number of our marque events.  We wanted to keep things simple so there are only two multi-choice questions to answer.  Please click on the link to complete the short survey https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/THFSRQR

Minecraft Orienteering

Minecraft Orienteering

This will appeal to all the young orienteers!

You can enter an international Minecraft Orienteering Competitions!

The most recent one was set in Venice, Italy.

The stream featured live commentary about the event, course analysis, route choice evaluation, interviews with competitors and other Orienteers from all over the world.

You must have Minecraft Java Edition to compete in Minecraft-O.

Orienteering SA have put together a video showing how realistic the Minecraft courses are to real life.

Click here to view.

Keep an eye on the OA Facebook page for details of the next competition if you are interested.

Thank you to Orienteering South Australia for this little gem!

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ONZ COVID-19 Information