Orienteering in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona!
See Who's Registered

Update 2/10/14:  Online registration is now closed.  Please register when you arrive at the site.
Update 2/2/14:  Course data is now posted below.  Beginners Clinics are available Saturday and Sunday only.

Welcome to the 2014 Southwest Spring B-meet during the Presidents’ Day weekend at Catalina State Park!  Three days of orienteering near Tucson.  Saturday we’ll kick off with Long courses, and Sunday we’ll shorten the distances some, but still offer some challenging classic courses.  Each day we’ll offer seven classes from beginner’s White to expert Blue.  Monday is a day to relax for those of you who want to celebrate Washington’s Birthday with a run followed by a picnic.  Two courses to choose from: Medium (4.2km level Green) and a Short (2.9km level Brown), and a mass start are what we have in mind.

The Southwest Spring Meet is in co-operation with the OUSA Junior Training Camp 2014, which will include a Sprint open to all on the UA campus.  [Update 2/8/14: The UA sprint portion has been canceled.]

Saguaro Forest

Large Boulder in a Saguaro Cactus Forest.  (Photo by Leif Lundquist)

The courses will be at 2700 feet altitude where the desert meets the Catalina Mountains north of Tucson.  We’ll run in the foothills among the iconic giant saguaro cacti, palos verde, and mesquite trees, in canyons, and over grassy fields against the backdrop of 9000 feet high mountains.  The desert terrain is generally open with scattered trees, cacti, and bushes, sometimes in groves; thickets of thorny cat claw or spiky chollas may occur in smaller patches.  From the top of the hills you can see far and wide, but to get where you want to go you may have to pass drainages and go down into the valleys where it’s a challenge to keep track of which side canyon or re-entrant you’re heading for.  The area is rich in features orienteers love (or sometimes hate), all on our updated 2013 map.  Click here for pictures from the area.

Online registration is now closed.  On-site registration will be available with a $5 surcharge per person.  To see who's already registered, click here.

Youth groups: All participants under 18 must provide a waiver signed by a parent/guardian.  If your group plans to bring a minor without their parent/guardian, then please request a waiver form to be signed by a parent/guardian in advance from one of our meet directors before you show up at the event.  Also, to take full advantage of the free entry fees for juniors, you need to pre-register!  Maximum team size is three persons per team.

Visitors: The Catalina State Park (http://azstateparks.com/Parks/CATA/index.html) is just north of Tucson along the old stage coach road to Oracle.  It has camping and RV facilities (booking required), and it’s also close to hotels and restaurants of all price ranges.  Tucson during the winter season is a lively place.  The February weather is generally sunny and pleasantly warm, but there can be the occasional cold and even rainy day. Fly, drive, or come by railroad.  Tucson has all levels of accommodations close to the meet site.  Historical Tucson, museums and the University of Arizona are near-by.

Directions: The entrance to the Catalina State Park is located about 15 miles north of the center of Tucson on Oracle Rd (AZ SR 77) in Oro Valley.  We have reserved the Gila Monster group area, where you can park and camp (park camping charges apply).  The area is booked from 2PM Friday 14th to 10PM Monday 17th. GPS coordinates for the park are: N 32.416777, W 110.937581.  For detailed driving instructions go to the park webpage listed above.

Carpooling:  Please note that the park charges an entry fee per car, so carpooling is a good idea.  If you wish to carpool into the park, the nearest suitable location is the parking lot on the north side of Chase Bank in the Oro Valley Marketplace, which is directly across the highway from the park entrance.  Please park away from the bank at the northernmost end of the lot so as not to inconvenience the bank.

Competition fees per day:

  • Members $8 per individual, $12 per team* for members of any recognized orienteering club.
  • Non-members: $12 per individual and $17 per team*.
  • Juniors under 18:  Free, no entry fee, but on-site per-person registration surcharge applies if you don't pre-register.
  • On-site registration surcharge fee:  $5 per person, so pre-register before the end of 2/9/14 to avoid this fee.
  • Sunday discount:  You get a $2 discount if you participated on Saturday.
  • Monday discount: Half price for all!
  • SI-card rental: $1.
  • Compass rental: $1.
  • Safety whistles to keep: $1.  Every person, regardless of course, will be required to carry some type of safety whistle.

*Maximum team size is three persons per team. 

Maps: Pre-printed for each course, scales 1:10,000 and 1:7,500.

Electronic SI-punching all the way – rental sticks will be available.

Courses: Courses (km/no controls).
Saturday: Blue 8.3/17, Red 7.5/14, Green 4.5/12, Brown 2.8/7, Orange 4.8/11,
Yellow 3.1/6, White 1.8/6.
Sunday: Blue 7.4/13, Red 6.0/10, Green 3.9/8, Brown 2.7/7, Orange 5.0/8,
Yellow 2.4/8, White 2.1/5.
Monday: Medium (4.2/10 level Green) and a Short (2.9/6 level Brown), mass

Schedule, Saturday:
9:00 AM: Registration opens.
9:30 AM: First start, Long courses
11:30 AM: Start closes.
2:00 PM: Long Courses close.

Schedule, Sunday:
9:00 AM: Registration opens.
9:30 AM: First start, Classic courses
11:30 AM: Start closes.
2:00 PM: Classic Courses close.

Schedule, Monday:
9:00 AM: Registration opens.
10:00 AM: Registration closes.
10:30 AM: Mass start, both courses.
1:00 PM: BYO picnic. Courses close.

Control retrieval: Please volunteer with the meet director!

Check-In: To ensure that all are safe, every runner, whether finished with the course or not, must check in at the Finish before leaving the meet site.

Newcomers: Go directly to the Registration. Ask for instructions and introductory information.  Ask for Beginner’s clinic times (Saturday and Sunday only).

Route choice reviews: Orienteers love to talk about alternate routes and their advantages and disadvantages. If you would like to discuss your choices, there will be advanced orienteers available near the Start/Finish area.

Questions?  Please contact our SW Spring Meet Coordinator and Course setter, Leif Lundquist, or one of our Meet Directors, Peg Davis, or Jeff Brucker ( jeffbrucker (-at-) hotmail (-dot-) com.

Welcome to the Southwest!