King’s birthday|Golden Bay  | 1-3 June
By Christo Peters - Fri 1 Mar 2024 9:56pm

What do you need to know about Nelson Orienteering Club’s (NOC) King’s Birthday this year?

  • All taking place on the way to and in stunning Golden Bay, one bay ‘over’ from Nelson;
  • A compact high quality orienteering weekend, with the first start on Saturday at 1PM, and course closure on Monday at 12 noon;
  • The Long and the Sprint are on brand-new maps. The Middle will take place on the stunning Canaan Downs South map, terrain described by fresh-former NOC president Matt Ogden as “Pure New Zealand orienteering, the spiritual epicentre for the sport”;
  • Online entries via EnterO are now open, until midnight Friday 10 May 2024. After this date,  50% late fee will be applied until midnight Friday 17 May 2024. There are no entries ‘on the day’.
  • Everybody who entered and paid in the month of March will automatically go in the draw for $50 vouchers for a great dining experience in the heart of Golden Bay at the Mussel Inn. Local Richard English describes the venue as “quirky with a good selection of beers” and a relaxed vibe with a large open fire during cold winter nights.
  • Book your travel and accommodation early, so you have plenty of time to make it to your first event on time;
  • •Bulletin 1, and additional information, including previous maps, embargo notices and photo impressions can be found on the King’s Birthday 2024 website.

Saturday 1 June 2023 – Middle: the venue is Canaan Downs, located on top of the Takaka Plateau, on the way to Golden Bay, ‘taking a right’ just below the Takaka Hill summit. While approximately 80km from Nelson Airport, please plan at least two hours to drive there. The first starts are scheduled from 1PM onwards. You will be running in terrain immortalised by Peter Jackson when Aragon helps the hobbits flee from the Black Riders in ‘Lord of the Rings: An Unexpected Journey’.

Sunday 2 June 2023 – Long: the venue is near Kaihoka Lakes, a brand-new map on the West Coast, almost exclusively on private farmland near the Whanganui Inlet. The first starts are scheduled from 10AM onwards.

Monday 3 June 2023 – Sprint: the venue is ‘in town’, as locals would say: Takaka’s Golden Bay High School and Takaka Primary School. The start window will be between 9 -11 AM, with course closure at 12 noon.

Personalised recommendations

Golden Bay has a lot to offer aside from amazing orienteering. To help all participants to experience all this wonderful area has to offer, NOC members involved in the event have shared their personal top tips for diverse activities and great food and drinks. 

Would you like to know where controller of the Middle Calum Coombs finds the best burgers in Takaka, or mapper Michael Croxford’s favourite café for coffee, and maybe the best places to go rock climbing or Golden Bay local Fleur Murray’s recommendation for two great hikes for those staying on with spare days? Visit the event website to find out more!

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