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Orienteering in Ashridge

Published on 26/02/19

Two members of the Claremont Fan Court School orienteering squad travelled to Hertfordshire last weekend to run in the ‘Ace of Hearts’ national orienteering event. The beautiful beech forest of the Ashridge Estate was bathed in glorious sunshine and conditions were perfect for the nearly five hundred competitors taking part. Apart from a very steep slope at the west end of the map, most of the terrain was relatively flat and mapped as ‘fast runnable forest’, but the hundreds of fallen ancient beech trees blown over by decades of gales made forward progress in a straight line very challenging, and the boys had to keep their wits about them to stay on course.

Ellis A, running his first solo Yellow course, sensibly took it slowly and steadily, and despite a small navigational error which required some thought to rectify, got round the 2.4 km course in 41:48 for 11th place. On the Short Green course, Jack P also veered off course on the way to his second control, but was quick to identify the best route back to where he should have been and completed the 4.4 km course in 41:05 to claim 6th place.

Both boys and the rest of the squad are keenly looking forward to the next event at Tilgate Forest, which is the venue for the SE regional heat of the Yvette Baker Shield, the premier national team event for junior orienteers.