Night-O Event and Course Notes
Bill Langton, Course Setter
General Notes on venue
Since Rick did such a great job with his notes I will shamelessly steal them:
Cuivre River State Park is a geological oddity. Though 60 miles north of St. Louis, its terrain and
ecology are similar to the Ozarks of southern Missouri. Due to an aggressive burning policy by
the Missouri DNR, the mature oak forests are wide open while the emerging oak savannahs
(more open woods) have underbrush.
In the white areas of the map the visibility is very high. The run-ability varies from fast to very
fast. The variation depends on whether the underbrush consists of 'harmless' plants, blackberry
canes, or multi-flora rose. Gaiters and leg coverings are strongly recommended. The footing
is good, but still be careful due to dry leaves and small limestone rocks.
In an ongoing effort to convert oak forest to oak savannah, many 2-5 inch diameter oaks have
been cut down. On this part of the map, this deadfall is only sporadic. Also, many 5-12 inch
diameter oaks have been partially cut (for woodpecker habitat, I believe) - looks weird and
Many reentrants are mapped with dry ditches which indicate at least minor erosion. These are
mapped consistently though 'end of ditch' is often not blatant. Since there are very few rock
features, small ones (at least 0.5 m) are mapped
Speed limit is 20 mph, but locals may drive faster - be careful.
Event Specific Notes:
RULE WAIVER NOTICE: The rules for competition courses (23.7) state that controls on
similar features will not be placed within 100m of each other. A petition for 90m was filed with the rules
committee and approved. All controls on clearly different features are still at least 75m apart. Since
some areas have a lot of controls it is strongly recommended to CHECK YOUR CONTROL NUMBERS!
LOCATION and PARKING: For the Night-O we will be utilizing the beach 'complex' at the north
end of the lake as the finish area and for parking. In the unlikely event that the beach lot fills to
capacity, head on up the hill to the campgrounds.
ACCESS: The beach is on the road to the campround. There is an electronic gate on the
beach/campground road near the junction with the main park road. The gate is open until
10PM. After 10PM a code is required to enter the area but the gate will open auto-magically
for exiting vehicles.
POTTIES: Conveniences at the beach are limited to vault toilets, one per gender. We will
supplement with at least one additional port-a-potty. Flush toilets, showers, and drinking
water are available in the campground.
START AREA: The start for all courses will be approximately 1100m from the beach parking
area with a climb, please plan accordingly. A toilet will be available near the start. The route to
the start area will be marked with a combination of orange surveyors tape and chemical glow
WARM-UP and OFF-LIMITS: All terrain north of the boat ramp turn-off is OFF-LIMITS. An area
of woods and trail near the Beach will be available for warm-up. Details will be provided on-
CLUE SHEETS: Clue sheets will be available at the 4-minute call-up.
BUGS: Contrary to Rick's claim, I HAVE found some ticks and plenty of chiggers on all of my
recent visits to the park. Both seem to ignore deet at any concentration. Duct tape works well
for removing chiggers. Mosquitos and Poison Ivy have been negligible.
VEGETATION: Enter medium green, dark green, and narrow vertical slash areas at your own
peril. In my opinion, wide vertical slash is generally quite passable but you will likely need to
pick your path as you go. Vegetation in the open areas varies dramatically in density and in
height (up to two meters). In general, don't expect clearings to be fast and don't be surprised if
you run across a turkey or two. I'll be surprised if you don't see at least one deer. The tall grass
in the fields can be razor sharp on bare skin, avoid pushing it out of the way with your hands.
share the same start location.
share the same final control. There will be a finish chute but it may not extend the entire
distance from the finish to the final control.
will have at least one road crossing.
will have at least one control with drinking water available.
All controls will be marked with reflective tape. An example will be available at the
Depending on the weather, the campground could be very busy. Please be respectful if/when
passing through the campground areas.
White: Rule I.6.2 states that "Any routes or crossings which require marking to direct the
competitor along a fixed route or direction, or to warn them away from a hazard, shall not be
part of a Night Orienteering course. Exceptions to this rule shall be the start and finish chutes."
Therefore, the start control for the White course will be at the end of a start chute marked by
surveying tape and chemical light sticks. Please follow this marked route to the start control.
Green/Red/Blue: The wires from a power line have been removed but the poles remain.
These have been mapped as black x's within a narrow clearing. The power cut is readily
crossable but not so runnable.
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Saturday Middle Distance
Rick Armstrong, Course Setter
Cuivre River State Park is a geological oddity. Though 60 miles north of St. Louis, its terrain and ecology are similar
to the Ozarks of southern Missouri. Due to an aggressive burning policy by the Missouri DNR, the mature oak forests
are wide open while the emerging oak savannahs (more open woods) have underbrush. About 90% of the Middle
Course map is white. The visibility is very high. The run-ability varies from good to very fast. The variation depends
on whether the thin 1-3 foot tall underbrush consists of 'harmless' plants, blackberry canes, or multi-flora rose.
Gaiters and leg coverings are strongly recommended - long sleeves optional. Thicker areas of blackberry and multi-
flora rose are mapped 'wide slash green' - passable but nasty. The park presents a traditional Midwest ridge and
reentrant system. However the steepness is less than other Missouri State Parks. The climb on all courses is about
2.5% as opposed to our usual 4-5%. The footing is good, but still be careful due to dry leaves and small limestone
As of mid-September, there were NO ticks, chiggers, or mosquitoes. That was unusual so early - they "shouldn't"
return. Poison ivy is minimal but do not grab any vines. Most are grape but some are poison ivy.
In an ongoing effort to convert oak forest to oak savannah, many 2-5 inch diameter oaks have been cut down. On
this part of the map, this deadfall is only sporadic. Also, many 5-12 inch diameter oaks have been partially cut (for
woodpecker habitat, I believe) - looks weird and dangerous.
Many reentrants are mapped with dry ditches which indicate at least minor erosion. These are mapped consistently
though 'end of ditch' is often not blatant. Since there are very few rock features, small ones (at least 0.5 m) are
Parking and Finish are in Camp Sherwood Forest in Cuivre River State Park - same location as the Friday Sprint. The
woods and cabin areas around the parking lot are OFF LIMITS for training or warm-ups. From the parking area,
Starts are a 700-meter flat walk along roads. The call-up line is the same for all seven courses. Clue sheets will be
distributed at the 4-minute call-up (they will NOT be in the meet packet). The White/Yellow Start is on the east side
of the road; the other five courses will cross the road to their second line and then proceed to their Start.
All courses share the same final control. The finish chute will not extend all 60m across the mowed grass from the
final control to the finish.
Orange through Blue courses: The wires from a power line have been removed but the poles are still there. They
are mapped as black x's along a swath of yellow. The power line cut is wide and can be crossed readily but is not
very runnable. Near the end of the course, you will cross the paved park road. Speed limit is 20 mph, but locals
may drive faster - be careful. Consider a mapped distinct tree in a field to be "isolated and large" as opposed to
the "largest tree in sight". Accurate orienteering will lead you to the correct tree.
White and Yellow courses: The power line in this area has been recently cleared and rebuilt. It has wires, is very
visible, and is easy to run or walk. It has been very dry - there will be no or very little water in the 'creek'. One leg
of the Yellow Course has been flagged with orange surveying tape. There will be tapes at least every 10m - please
follow them from one control to the next control. There is no road crossing for the White and Yellow courses.
ENJOY your run through our fast terrain, but pay attention to your
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Eric Buckley, Course Setter
While the woods are just as fast, the terrain at Creve Coeur Lake could not be more
different from Cuivre River. There are no (as in absolutely none) contour lines in the
main section of forest but the feature density is considerably higher than our typical
open woods. In fact, the features are so dense that it could be very easy to mistake what
feature the control is on. It may be officially on the east side of a rootstock, but it's
probably also very close to an intermittent stream, a point marsh, and a pit. CHECK
That said, if you are used to using contours as your primary navigation tool, this area will
strike you as being quite bland. For this reason, parallel errors are to be expected.
CHECK CONTROL CODES!
All teams except for 2-person White/Yellow will mass start together. There will be forking.
Follow at your own risk. CHECK CONTROL CODES!
We previously published that teams would be allowed to run penalty loops in the event of
a mispunch. However, that rules variance has been denied by the sanctioning committee.
Therefore, a second of sloppiness could get an entire team disqualified for a mispunch.
Don't do this to your teammates because, while I'll say it only one more time, your
teammates will never let you live it down: CHECK CONTROL CODES!
This is a great spectator venue. You will be able to see your teammates in action at
several points throughout the course. Because you will be looking at them from across a
lake, binoculars will help considerably. We strongly recommend that each team have at
least one pair. The last spectator control comes just a few minutes before the finish
(on most courses, it is the penultimate control), so that's a good time to get your
next runner in position. The GO control and run-in are common to all courses and visible from the exchange area.
All the maps will be staked to the ground in the exchange area face down by bib number.
When a runner comes into the GO control, the next member of the team should enter the
exchange area and stand next to their map, but not pick it up. The clue sheet for the map
will be attached to the map. This may be picked up before the tag, but not brought out of
the exchange area or shown to other competitors. No other teammates are allowed in the
exchange area, but they may stand along the chute between the finish punch and
exchange area to help point the incoming runner to their next teammate. The incoming
runner must punch the finish control prior to entering the exchange area and tagging their
teammate. Once the tag is made, the next runner can pick up their map and start their
course. The outgoing runner does NOT have to punch the start control (in fact, they
won't be able to because there won't be any start control, so don't bother looking for
After tagging (or, in the case of the final runner, simply punching the finish), the
incoming runner should proceed immediately to download. While we will publish
adjusted splits after the fact, all splits will be given assuming the mass start time. You can
subtract off the finish split from the teammate who tagged you if you want to correct your
first leg split yourself.
All teammates will be given the opportunity to run their course even if an earlier
teammate fails to complete their leg. However, they will have to wait for the delayed start
so they don't interfere with teams still vying for a championship. Any runner who has
not received a tag from a teammate by the time of their delayed start may start without
being tagged. This is optional, but recommended. The delayed start schedule is as
Any team not finishing leg 4 by 3PM is overtime. There is effectively no time limit for
White/Yellow teams or solo runners. If they want to take until 3PM to finish, that's fine
with us. In all cases, however, please do check in at the finish by downloading, EVEN IF
YOU KNOW YOU DNF'd. It's rather hard to imagine needing a search party in a park
this small, but stranger things have happened.
- Leg 2: 11:30 AM
- Leg 3: 12:30 PM
- Leg 4: 1:30 PM
Just in case you didn't see it in the revised map notes, the contour interval is 5m, not
2.5. Most courses only cross one contour line anyway, so it doesn't much matter, but we
thought you might want to know. There are a few distinct elevation changes in the 2.5m
range that are indicated with form lines.
Also from the revised map notes, the park is letting the grass get REALLY long in spots.
The map has been updated to show the running speed as open or dense slash. The dense stuff
is nearly impassible and should be avoided. If this was standard point-to-point orienteering, I'd
just move the start to avoid it, but since relay legs are necessarily loops, you'll have to go
through at least a bit of slow stuff at the beginning of your course. Don't get discouraged; it's
only a few hundred meters in the fields and then you are into some very fast woods for the rest of
Team roster forms will be included in all race packets. One FINAL roster needs to be
submitted for each team (including solo "teams") NO LATER THAN 4PM Saturday (at
the Corn Maze). Please don't ask us to budge on this one. Rushing the process of getting
teams properly assigned to courses/bib numbers invites mistakes that could compromise
the entire championship. Relay bib numbers will be distributed at check in Sunday
morning. One member from each team should pick up the numbers for the entire team.
DO NOT WEAR YOUR NUMBER FROM FRIDAY/SATURDAY!
Finally, after you run, feel free to hang out and enjoy the food and beverages offered at
the Lakeside Cafe which is right next to the finish. We have a bunch of seats reserved on
the patio. They are happy to move us inside if the weather warrants, but please remember
to change out of your spikes if going inside. They start serving both breakfast and lunch
items at 11AM. Awards will be presented no later than 3PM. We'll do them sooner if we
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Eric Buckley, Course Setter
The sprint will be run on an enlarged version of the ISOM map with no other modifications. As such, all
notes pertaining to the map and terrain for the night and middle apply, except for the scale, which is
1:5,000. I won't repeat them here. All features except buildings and high fences are crossable.
The sprint start and finish is in Camp Sherwood Forest, in the northern portion of the park. Ordinarily it
would be faster to come in from the north on Highway KK, but that route is closed due to bridge repairs.
Thus, you will need to come in through the main (southern) entrance of the park. While it's somewhat
tedious to drive the length of the park at 20 miles per hour, you are well advised to observe the speed
limits. The park roads are patrolled and the fines are steep.
There are no assigned start times for the sprint. After collecting your race packet, get yourself ready to
run and present yourself at the start to receive the next available slot. Clear and check SI units will be at
the start (only).
In typical sprint fashion, courses are set so routes using trails and open areas are generally favored.
However, expect to do some running in the woods. While vegetation is reasonably open,
minimal leg protection is advised.
Download is near the finish. Please download immediately upon finishing since we'll need to move the
computers to the night venue as soon as the sprint closes.
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