If you go into the woods the weekend of October 19-21, you’re in for a big surprise!
The North American Orienteering Championships will be held from Friday October 19 to Sunday October 21, 2012. NAOC 2012 headquarters will be at the Pocono Environmental Education Center (PEEC) in connection with the host club, the Delaware Valley Orienteering Association (DVOA). Orienteers from the US, Canada, the Caribbean and Europe will compete in three World Ranking Events. DVOA expects over 500 competitors and support staff in the woods around PEEC on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Everyone will be watching world-class runners go head to head – but there will be plenty of excitement in every age and skill class.
PEEC will be the headquarters, and the final event on Sunday will be an exciting spectator-friendly relay between national teams right on the PEEC campus. Their award winning new dining facility will be the heart of the social activities for the weekend. The Poconos will be especially beautiful in October, and competitors and their families will be “out and about” enjoying everything the area has to offer.
Anyone heading out into the woods for hunting or a quiet hike from October 18 to the 21st in the areas of PEEC, Adams Creek or Egypt Mills might be surprised to encounter race workers setting up water stations and controls with orange and white flags and score boxes, or doing take-down, as well as competitors in club or national team uniforms. Shuttle buses will also be in action, ferrying runners to the remote starting points.
If you are not familiar with the sport, orienteering competitors are issued a detailed map and use only their map and compass skills and speed in the woods to find control points in order in the forest. It’s a timed race and a great workout for body and mind, and all ages and fitness levels can participate.
DVOA has had a great season so far, sending both a men’s and women’s relay team to the world’s largest orienteering relay event in Finland, Jukola 2012. Masters and Juniors from the US, with a strong representation from the Delaware Valley, competed in Germany, Spain, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Now it is DVOA’s turn to host competitors from around the globe on our world class orienteering terrain in the Delaware Water Gap NRA.
Everything you want to know about NAOC 2012 is on the event website, WWW.NAOC2012.ORG