Edinburgh Southern Orienteering Club


Saughton Park

Image of the Saughton Park map

ESOC Local Event in Edinburgh and Lothians

Sat 16th Jul 2022

Info updated: 16th Jul
Type of event: Local
Type of terrain: Parkland


The results are HERE

General Information


Organiser & Planning Comments (from Janet Clark but also on behalf of Peter Halling): Saughton Park was just the place to be on this lovely afternoon.   The orienteering was a great add-on to the many activities - some more energetic than others - already happening.  In addition to the pre-entries, there was plenty of interest from  people already in the park Some had never done orienteering before; some remembered it dimly from the past, and lots of happy kids discovered the fun of it.   The Planners, Sam  Mackenzie and Peter Halling,  had to amend one course due to the dismantling of the "Nickelodeon" event not being quite finished, and a crucial gate was only unlocked for us minutes before we started, but  they overcame these problems with aplomb.    There was plenty of time to explain to each  newcomer how it worked, and spectators sitting in the Rose Garden enjoyed seeing people running around.  The "time trial" on the Orange Course was won hands down by Calum.  
Orienteering is part of the Council's Plan for Saughton Park , so we hope to hold many more of these introductory events; this one was a delight to all involved..


  A smaller city park with areas of grass, individual trees and small patches of woodland. The Rose Gardens offer a complicated network of paths and grassy strips together with uncrossable walls and hedges. All the flower beds are mapped as private land and must not be crossed.

Other Users: The park is well used by the general public, especially in nice weather, including dog walkers, runners, walkers, and families out for a picnic.  Please respect their right to be there at the same time as you are orienteering.

Dogs: Dogs are allowed but should be kept under very close control at all times. Please be aware that some park users may be nervous of dogs.

Dress: Please check the weather forecast on the day and dress appropriately.  This event is in the summer in the city but we all know it can be cold in Edinburgh even when the sun is shining!!  Fortunately there are no brambles or other nasties that are so often a feature of orienteering.

Map: The course maps will be printed on A4 size waterproof paper, the control descriptions will be printed on the map (no loose control descriptions) and the map scale will be 1:2500. 

Timing: Sportident electronic timing will be used for this event.  See later for details of how to hire this if you don't have your own.

Course Closure Time: Please note that courses have a closure time of 4.00pm after which controls will start to be brought in.

Covid:  The legal restrictions related to Covid have been removed however much of the Government guidance remains the same and the precautions we have been taking at orienteering events for some time now will continue for the time being. 

Please don’t come to the event if you have Covid or symptoms of Covid.

Please also try to:

1. Respect other people's personal space at all times; 

2. Make use of the hand sanitiser wherever it is made available; 

3. Remain as quiet as possible at and around the start area, the start line and the download area;   

Please read and respect the British Orienteering Participant Code of Conduct.

Medical Conditions: If you, or anyone in your group (including juniors), have a medical condition that first aiders or health professionals should know about in the event of accident or illness during the course of the event please print off the Medical Form, fully complete it, bring it to the event in a sealed envelope with your name on the front and leave at Registration.   You are welcome to collect it after your run but if you don't, it will be destroyed immediately after the event.

First Aid: We encourage you to bring your own first aid kit and administer as necessary.  A basic first aid kit will be available at Registration/Download. Please ask there for anything you may need.  For further specific advice please call 111 or for a life threatening emergency dial 999.  The Organiser will be happy to advise and support you as required, including use of a mobile phone if you do not have one with you.  

The main hospital for A&E services in Edinburgh is:

Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh
51 Little France Crescent
Old Dalkeith Road
EH16 4SA
Telephone: 0131 536 1000

Depending on where you live you may prefer to attend A & E or the minor injury unit local to your home. Note that current advice is to ring 111 before attending A&E if the situation is not life threatening. 


map location

Nearest town: City of Edinburgh


The event will be based at the side of the Ford’s Road (western) car park. The base will be near the cafe buildings.

Public Transport: If you live in the city it should be quite easy to reach this event by bus.  Check Lothian Buses to plan your route. It may help to know that is Lothian Buses services 3, 25, 30 and 33 have a stop called Saughton Park on Gorgie Road near the junction with Ford’s Road. Follow Ford’s Road over the river bridge to the event arena. Buses 1, 2 and 22 have a stop called Whitson Crescent on Stevenson Drive. This is near to an entrance to the park from which a tarmac pathway takes you SE through the competition area (past a few controls) to the event arena near the café buildings. 

By Bike: If you live in or close to the city, you'll find it easy to come to the event by bike. An official cycle path crosses the park from Balgreen Road to Ford’s Road, and passes right past the event arena (near the cafe buildings).   Note that a variety of quiet cycle route maps throughout the city are available on the Edinburgh City Council Quiet Routes web pages. It should be possible to lock your bike to a fence near Registration.

By Vehicle: The Ford's Road western car park is approached by Ford’s Road from the junction of Stenhouse Avenue and Stenhouse Terrace. Follow signs for Saughton Sports Complex. Cars cannot approach via Ford’s Road from Gorgie Road, as the river bridge is for pedestrians and cycles only.

If, as is very likely, the car park is full you may have to park in surrounding streets. If this happens please be considerate to locals. 

Registration & Start Times

REGISTRATION (for collection of dibbers, White and Yellow maps etc) will be open from just before 1pm to about 2.15pm and will be in a tent at the side of the Ford’s Road car park, next to the gap in the wall that leads to the café.  

STARTS will be from 1pm to 2.30pm. The start will be 100m away from Registration, through the café courtyard and back out through the gap in the wall straight opposite.

WHITE and YELLOW COURSE MAPS: Please collect these from Registration before going to the Start.  Course maps for other courses are collected after punching the start.

FINISH will be at the SE corner of the car park.

Course Information

The size of the park and the nature of the terrain makes Green and Blue courses impossible. There will therefore just be White, Yellow and Orange courses for beginners and improvers.

The Yellow course is planned by Sam Mackenzie (age 12) who has also advised Peter Halling on the White and Orange.

Provisional Course Details
Course Length No of Controls
White 1.2 14 
Yellow 1.7 14 
Orange 2.3 17

There is negligable climb on all courses.

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 via Racesignup is required for this event.  Entries open Monday 4th July and will close at 10am on Saturday 16th July - the day of the event.  To be guaranteed a course map of your chosen course you MUST however pre-enter by 6pm on Tuesday 12th July. 

Late pre-entries - As mentioned above, entries will remain open until 10am on the morning of the event but entries will only be accepted by Racesignup if there are course maps remaining.   RaceSignUp will not accept your entry once the maps for your chosen course have sold out however it's still worth trying to enter, you could still be lucky. You could maybe even try entering a different course if your first choice is full.

Entry on the Day (EOD) at the event: If you have to resort to coming to the event without pre-entering please read the Registration Section above for details of what to do.

You can view an entry list for all competitors and their chosen start blocks on RaceSignUp (scroll down to Start List section). Please note that you can arrive at the start any time within your block.

Entry Fees: As well as individuals the entry system also allows pairs, groups or families who wish to go round a course together to enter using a sliding scale of fees.  Full details at the RaceSignUp webpage link above but a flavour of the entry fee scales is given below for advance guidance.

Category No of Persons per entry Orienteering Club Members Non Members
1. 1 Adult (Senior) £4 £6
2. 1 Junior £2 £4
3. 2 Adults (Seniors) £5 £7
4. 2 Juniors £2.50 £4.50
5. 1 Adult + 1 Junior £4.50 £6.50
6. 1 Adult + 2 Juniors £5 £7
7. 2 Adults + 1 Junior £5.50 £7.50
8. 2 Adults + 2 Juniors £6 £8
9. 2 Adults + 3 Juniors £6.50 £8.50

Note that a Senior is someone born 2001 or earlier and a Junior is someone born 2002 or later.  Currently matriculated students will normally be eligible to enter as Juniors and pay junior fees - check out RaceSignUp as before.

SportIdent (SI) electronic timing will be used.  If you have your own SI (dibber) please bring it with you.

We have SIs for hire free of charge via the pre-entry system 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

Organiser: EMAIL

Planners: Sam Mackenzie and Peter Halling. (The Yellow course has been planned by  Sam Mackenzie (age 12) who has also advised Peter Halling on the White and Orange courses.)

Controller/Mentor: Peter Halling

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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