Edinburgh Southern Orienteering Club


Hopetoun House

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ESOC local event in Edinburgh and the Lothians

Sat 11th Feb 2017

Info updated: 11th Feb
Type of event: Local
Type of terrain: Parkland, Woodland


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The prospects for today were not good; snow in the forecast and on the roads not far away; beginning of school holiday week, a bit further to travel for Edinburgh people; a very wet cold morning.   However, we pressed on.   Maureen and Bill spent a cold wet morning putting out controls.  The Support Team  set up at 12.30 safely sheltered in the Education Room.  The Juniors arrived for coaching at 13.00;  a bit reduced in numbers but happy and optimistic.   
It looked a bit quiet when Registration opened at 13.30, but before we knew it a steady stream of cars was arriving through the gloom and we were off!  Several people had been at our Cammo event in January and wanted to do it again.   A good number came to try orienteering for the first time; and seemed to be happy to ignore the weather and enjoy the fun of finding the controls.  Most habitual parkrunners confessed to having wimped out this morning so came orienteering instead.   It was a lovely mixed crowd of all ages, all getting  a kick out of running around Hopetoun on a wet afternoon.
Special thanks to Mark Kassyk who manned the Start throughout and must have been frozen.  Special mention to Calum Robertson who, after running  two courses afterwards, was presented with his Gold Badge for completing 100 events.  Very grateful thanks to Maree, the Hopetoun Ranger, who arranged this off-season entry to the Hopetoun House grounds for us.    We promised to avoid trampling any snowdrops, as  she is holding a Snowdrop Open Day tomorrow.    And Walter was remembering his wedding here at Hopetoun, fourteen years ago.  An old University friend, his son and his Mum were here with him today! 
Janet Clark

General Information

Dress: Please check the weather forecast on the day and dress appropriately.  This event is in the grounds of Hopetoun House and adjoining parkland. It can be very cold and windy on this area in winter even when the weather is fine. 

Terrain:  Estate grounds and adjoining parkland.

Other Users: Although this is a private estate the area is used by others, most notably dog walkers and families. Please respect their right to be there at the same time as you are orienteering.  

Dogs:  Dogs are allowed but should be kept under close control at all times. 

Course Closure Time: Please note that courses have a closure time of 4pm after which controls will start  to be brought in.  It is dusk followed by darkness very early at this time of year so it is even more important to start bringing in controls at 4pm.

The snowdrops are really beautiful at Hopetoun just now, and they are holding a special "Snowdrop Day" the day after our event.    Our courses have been planned to avoid the main snowdrop areas, but please could everyone take care to avoid running over them where possible.   


map location

Nearest town: South Queensferry


Hopetoun House is on the shore of the Firth of Forth close to the new Queensferry Crossing.  When nearing South Queensferry follow the brown signs for Hopetoun House.  Come up the drive keeping to the right on approach and park in front of Hopetoun House. There are no other events on at Hopetoun this afternoon so we can use the front parking area.

Registration & Start Times

REGISTRATION: Registration will be very close to parking at Hopetoun House.

Registration will be from 1.30pm to 2.30pm for newcomers to orienteering and will run from 1.30pm to 3pm for experienced orienteers. 

It is not necessary - or possible – to pre-enter for this event.  Everyone is very welcome, just to turn up.  Whether you are a newcomer or have been to a lot of events, please try to come and start early if you think you might take a long time over your course.

Registration Form - We know how time consuming, and occasionally frustrating, it can be for our competitors to have to complete the Registration Form outside in the cold and wet of a Scottish Saturday afternoon so we have produced an ESOC  ADVANCE REGISTRATION FORM for you to complete and print off and bring with you to the event. This will save a lot of time and the forms easier to read!!  Apologies to those experienced Saturday attendees who feel they don't need the sample at the top of the page but it will be very helpful to our newcomers and properly completed, legible registration forms are a huge help to those manning our computers during and after the event.  

Thank you in advance for helping us by completing the form and bringing it with you.

 If you would like a little more advance information about the registration process at a local event why not read our QUICK GUIDE TO REGISTRATION?

NOTE: Current members of an orienteering club who have their own registered SI can continue to come to Registration and go through the speedy entry system.  If in any doubt whether this applies to you then it is best to complete the attached application form and bring it with you. 

START AND FINISH will be very close to Registration. Start times will be from 1.30pm to 3pm.

COURSE CLOSURE TIME: Please note that courses have a closure time of 4pm after which controls will start  to be brought in.  It is dusk followed by darkness very early at this time of year so it is even more important to start bringing in controls at 4pm otherwise head torches would be needed!! Please make sure you arrive in plenty of time to register, get to the start and complete your course before controls begin to be brought in.

Course Information

As usual at ESOC local events, there will be White, Yellow and Orange courses for beginners and improvers and a Light Green course for experienced orienteers. 

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 1996 or earlier)
British Orienteering members - £4
Non-members - £6

Juniors (born 1997 or later)
British Orienteering members - £2
Non-members - £3

British Orienteering members - £2
Non-members - £3

Family Groups (Adults + children)
British Orienteering members - £4
Non- members - £6

Note: A family group for the above entry fee purposes comprises up to a maximum of 2 adults and up to 3 children. 

Extra adults are £1 each and extra juniors are 50 pence each. 

SportIdent (SI) electronic timing will be used.  If you have your own SI (dibber) please bring it with you. We'll have SIs for hire free of charge but there is a £30 charge if lost. If you would like to buy your own SI-Card then a variety are available directly from SportIdent UK.   The choice may be confusing and it may help you to know that the SI-Cards which ESOC hires out are very similar to the most basic model shown on the linked page - the SI-Card 8.

Contacts / Officials


Phone: Janet on 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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