Edinburgh Southern Orienteering Club


North Pentland Hills (Dreghorn), SoSOL

Image of the Dreghorn map

ESOC event in South of Scotland Orienteering League (SoSOL)

Sun 06th Mar 2022

Info updated: 06th Jan
Type of event: Regional
Type of terrain: Moorland, Woodland

General Information

COVID 19: You should not attend the event if you are showing any symptoms of Covid 19 even though you have pre-entered. You should also not attend if you have specifically been asked to quarantine or self-isolate.  The event will be managed to take account of all Scottish Government Guidelines.  Additionally, the event will be run in accordance with Scottish Orienteering Association (SOA) Guidelines.  Please: 
- do not arrive too early for your start block
- keep a 1m distance to others outwith your household
- use the hand sanitiser provided at the Start and Download.
These precautions are specifically required during your ‘race’ ie from the time you leave you car to go to the start to after you download (ie while you are in the “field of play”). Apart from this you should follow all Scottish Government Guidelines for the general public.

BRITISH ORIENTEERING PARTICIPANT CODE OF CONDUCT: All competitors are asked to read and abide by the British Orienteering Participant Code of Conduct in relation to Covid. Anyone making an entry on behalf of someone else should advise them of this.

Dress: Please check the weather forecast on the day and dress appropriately.  This event will be mostly on open hillside on the lower northern slopes of the North Pentland Hills.  The White and Yellow courses will be on lower, less exposed areas.  It is especially important on this area to dress appropriately for the weather conditions on the day.

Map: Scale TBC. The Dreghorn map shown on thumbnail covers only part of the area.  Routegadget for the North Pentland Hills event back in September 2019 is here. This shows the entire area of North Pentland Hills, much of which will be used for this event.

Course Maps: These will be printed on waterproof paper and control descriptions will be printed on the course maps.  Loose control descriptions will be available at the starts.

Terrain:  The area is mostly exposed open hillside with some wooded areas.  There are paths and tracks, plenty of contour detail and, in parts, many crags and ditches.  There are also numerous low and high fences in the area.  There is a path and fence network with paths mostly being on the lower slopes.  The area is used for sheep grazing and there are numerous unmapped animal tracks. There also a few vague, unmapped mountain bike tracks in the some of the woods. Competitors may also encounter the resident herd of highland cows on the high ground in eastern part of the area. They are used to people and should not be a problem.

North Pentland Hills can be very muddy indeed. 

Other Users: This area is extensively used by all sectors of the general public and some parts are used for Army training from nearby Dreghorn Barracks. Please respect their right to be there at the same time as you are orienteering.  More information later about the military use of the area for training purposes. 

Dogs:  Dogs are allowed and should be kept under very close control at all times.  Note that there may be sheep and, on some of the higher slopes, there are cattle around this competition area.      

Course Closure Time: Please note that courses have a closure time (TBC) after which controls will start  to be brought in.  Dusk followed by darkness is still fairly early at this time of year, especially in poor weather, so it is important to start bringing in controls at the stated time.

Area Specific Safety Issues:  1.  Army training, This orienteering area is used by the Army for training.  It is close to Dreghorn Barracks.  We do not know if there will be training on the day of the event however those responsible for juniors should make them aware that they may possibly see or hear Army training operations. Juniors should also be told not to pick up anything whilst out on their course.  There will be no danger to the public or to orienteers (this is a very public area) but noises, including bangs, can be scary for youngsters.   2. Electricity Pylons, There are large electricity pylons on this area.  These are strictly out of bounds to everyone. 


map location

Nearest town: City of Edinburgh


The postcode given is for the Travelodge at Dreghorn Services and is ONLY A GUIDE to reach the general area.

You can reach this orienteering area reasonably easily by public transport.  

By bus: Lothian Buses service 16  to the stop near roundabout at Dreghorn Link is the best option. Follow Dreghorn Link towards the city bypass and follow intstructions as below from westbound carriageway.  Note that the roads here are very busy, take great care when crossing. 

By bike:  A variety of quiet cycle route maps throughout the city are available on the Edinburgh City Council Quiet Routes web pages.  There is a fence adjoining the car parking where bikes can be chained. 

By motor vehicle: Head for the Edinburgh city bypass (A720) and exit at the Dreghorn Junction.  Coming from the eastbound carriageway of the bypass (or from the city via Dreghorn Link) cross over the bypass and follow the road around to the right as though you were heading back on to the westbound carriageway of the bypass (note this part of the westbound slip is a two way road). The turning to the parking area is 50m from the corner on the left.  
From the westbound carriageway of the bypass head to the top of the Dreghorn junction slip road go straight across (again, note two way road here) as though you were heading back on to the westbound carriageway.  After 50m turn left. Parking for orienteers is NOT on the public parking area immediately adjoining the city bypass.

HEIGHT RESTRICTED BARRIER FOR VEHICLE ACCESS: there is an access barrier with a height restriction, just after the final left turn mentioned above, to gain access to the Dreghorn parking area - approach with extreme care.  Specific information about how we can enable this barrier to be open to orienteers with a vehicle over the designated height will be added here nearer the event.  Note

Everyone will need to be out of the orienteering-specific parking area by a designated time - TBC nearer the event - otherwise they will be locked in.     

Registration & Start Times

No Registration or Enquiries on the day.

START TIMES: TBC but will begin late morning and finish early afternoon.  

STARTS: There will likely be 2 starts. One close by the car parking for White and Yellow course competitors and a separate start, further away (distance TBC), for all other courses.  

FINISH: Single finish close to car parking. 

Course Information

Range of courses from White through to Brown.  More information to follow soon.

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

Pre-Entry and pre-payment will be required for this event. Pre-entries will be via Fabian4 and will open in February 2022. 


SportIdent (SI) electronic timing will be used.   You can hire a dibber free of charge via the entry system from ESOC but there is a £30 charge if you lose it.

If you would like to buy your own dibber (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

Planners: Sabine Oechsner and Simon Gregersen (ESOC)

Controller: Paul Caban (INT)

Organiser: Fiona Findlay (ESOC)

Early enquiries of any kind:  

Entry enquiries once entries open (only):  

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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