Edinburgh Southern Orienteering Club



Image of the Castlelaw map

ESOC local event in Edinburgh and the Lothians

Sat 12th Apr 2014

Info updated: 18th Feb
Type of event: Local
Type of terrain: Moorland, Woodland


Results are now available here.

The winsplits are here.

It was a lovely sunny afternoon for this local event but what everyone will undoubtedly remember will be the effects of the wind!  It really was a windy afternoon; a day for holding tightly to maps, hats and small children.  Nevertheless everyone seemed to enjoy the challenges presented by the courses.

There were extra challenges, due to the wind, for the organisers.  Most regulars would notice there were no flags, start or finish banners or even the usual amount of signage.  This was all due to wind issues - these simply would not stand up to that level of wind.  The red/white tapes indicating the route to the start did, thankfully, stand up to the onslaught of the wind.  We were fortunate in being able to move the course choice/registration indoors and I'm sure competitors were happier be squashed in a room than to have had to contend with looking at maps and filling in entry forms outside.

We are very thankful to the Army for allowing us to use their building and garden for the event. This was a huge advantage for the organisers as we had access to electricity and toilets - unusual for a local event.    We also extend our thanks to the local farmer/shepherd for tolerating us being there at lambing time.  Our entreaties to everyone to shut gates were heartfelt and we are grateful for all our heeding this.

Thanks to all who helped on the day and to all competitors who came along and enjoyed the orienteering challenges set for them.

Margaret Dalgleish

General Information

Dress: Check the weather forecast and dress appropriately.   

Terrain:  Exposed open hillside with some wooded areas and some paths.  

Other Users: Castlelaw is used by the general public and also by the army and TA for training purposes.  

Safety: It is possible that you may come across used cartridges or other items left behind after army training.  Please don't touch anything of this nature and please alert your children not to touch this sort of item. You may also hear the sound of gunfire from the Castlelaw Ranges.  If you are bringing children, please reassure them that the noises are normal and safe.

First Aid -,As usual at ESOC local events, there will be a basic first aid kit at Registration and a Club first aider will be available if needed.  The Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh (Postcode: EH16 4SA) is approximately 8 miles away and is easily accessible  from the area via A702 northbound to Lothianburn junction and eastbound on the Edinburgh city bypass (A720).


map location

Nearest town: Penicuik


Head for the A702 southbound from the city of Edinburgh bypass (A720) at Lothianburn junction.  After approximately 3 miles turn right on to a B road heading towards the Pentland Hills.  There is a sign towards the Castlelaw Hill Fort and also to the Castlelaw Ranges.  Follow the road as far as it goes. Parking in the farmyard adjacent to the car park for Castlelaw Hill Fort. There will be £1.00 parking fee.

Registration & Start Times

REGISTRATION: in the pink building next to car park and open from 2pm to 3pm. It is not necessary - or possible – to pre-enter for this event.  Everyone is very welcome, just to turn up.  Please try to come early if you think you might take a long time over your course.

START AND FINISH will be only a short walk from the car park. Start times will be from 2pm to 3pm.

COURSES CLOSE at 4pm and controls will be brought in from that time, so it is essential that you report to the Finish by 4pm, even if you have not completed your course.  Please come and start early if you think you might need to be out a long time on your course and tell someone on Registration that you expect to be out a while.

Course Information

There will be White, Yellow and Orange courses and a Green course for experienced orienteers.  Castlelaw is an area suitable for orienteering at all skill levels. 

Excellent training for hill running and hill navigation.

Explanation of colour courses

  • White are very easy with all controls on paths. They are mainly used by 6-10 year olds and family groups.
  • Yellow use simple linear features like paths, walls and streams. They are mainly used by under 12’s and family groups.
  • Orange progress to basic use of the compass and route choice. They are ideal for novice adults or experienced youngsters.
  • Light Green are ideal for improvers as the navigational difficulty begins to increase and uses simple contours and point features.
  • Green are used mostly by experienced under 18’s and adults wanting a short but challenging course with a very hard navigational difficulty.
  • Blue are a longer, more physically demanding course in comparison to the green. The distances are more varied between controls and the course attracts experienced orienteers.
  • Brown & Black are very physically demanding and have a very hard navigational difficulty. They are for experienced orienteers only.
  • Score means visiting as many controls as possible in any order in a specific time, like 45mins.

Entry Details

Seniors (born 1993 or earlier)
British Orienteering members - £3
Non-members - £5

Juniors (born 1994 or later)
British Orienteering members - £2
Non-members - £2.50

British Orienteering members - £2
Non-members - £2.50

Groups (Adults + children)
British Orienteering members - £4
Non- members - £5

SportIdent (SI) electronic timing will be used.  If you have your own SI please bring it with you. We will have SIs for hire free of charge but there is a £30 charge if lost.

Contacts / Officials

Organiser: Margaret Dalgleish (ESOC)

Planner: Les Dalgleish (ESOC)

Controller: Mike Stewart (ESOC)

Advance Information: Email: or Phone: 0131 225 7771

Safety and Risk

A comprehensive risk assessment will have been carried out by the organiser, but participants take part at their own risk and are responsible for their own safety during the event.

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