Beginner's Home Page

As a new orienteer you probably have many questions. The information on this page and in the Beginner's FAQ will answer a lot of your questions and help you to be better prepared for your first outing.

Orienteering can be approached in many ways. Most beginners will start out by walking on one of the easier courses - White or Yellow.

After you've been at the sport for a while, you may want to become more competitive. Once at this level you will most likely exchange your hiking shoes for something lighter and faster. You will also probably adopt clothing that is better suited for running.

Unlike many other running races, in orienteering the start times are staggered. After you rhecki n at registration go to the start table where you will be given a map and assigned a start time - usually within just a few minutes. The last start time is 1:00 pm. The courses close and controls are picked up at 3:30 pm during EST, and 4:00 pm during EDT.

Fees to participate in a local event:
We use online preregistration for all of our events. You'll find links to register on our schedule page. Cost is $12.00/map for non-members (a group can use one map) and $7.00/map for DVOA members, Juniors (Under 21), and for members of other USOF or IOF clubs.

Day-of event registration will be available on a limited basis and Map/Course selection may be limited. Cost for day-of-event registration is $10/map for the white course and $20/map for all other courses. Registration at the DVOA event is from 10:00 am - 1:00 pm, unless otherwise noted. The last start time is 1:00 pm. The courses close and controls are picked up at 3:30 pm during EST, and 4:00 pm during EDT.

Note: No charge to borrow e-punch stick or compass. Require deposit of keys for loan of either item.

Other Items for purchase:
E-punch stick: $40
Whistle: $1
Patch: $2

Courses are pre-printed on the map, and typically include White, Yellow, Orange, Green, and Red. Occasionally there will be a Brown and/or a Blue course available. A String-O course for young children is sometimes available. Please check with the event director prior to the day of the event to check if a String-O course will be offered.

So, check out the FAQ, then pick a date from the schedule. Once you try orienteering, you'll be hooked.

If you have questions that are not answered by the FAQ, please feel free to call the DVOA hotline 610-792-0502 for additional information. (Also, if you let the Webmaster know of any questions, they'll be added so that future beginner's can benefit - thanks!).