Looking to sharpen your navigational skills? Want to participate in a very cool competition this summer? Then consider adding the 3rd Annual Dakota Rogaining Championship to your list of activities. The event is scheduled to take place on August 18-19 in the amazing Black Hills National Forest and Custer State Park in South Dakota and is guaranteed to be a great time for all who participate.
The event is being organized by my friend Rick Emerson, who designed the awesome course for Primal Quest Badlands a few years back. Rick knows the Badlands better than anyone and I have no doubt that his course for this event will be no less challenging and spectacular. It will feature 50 navigational checkpoints do discover, spread out over new terrain and with revised maps. Additionally, the competition will feature electronic controls this year which will more closely track the teams as they make their way across the course.
For those who aren’t familiar with rogaining, or orienteering as it is sometimes called, the competitions involve teams of between two and five members who use maps and compasses to locate as many checkpoints on a course over a given amount of time. In the case of the Dakota Rogaining Championship there is a 24-hour competition, a 12-in-24 hour intermediate race, and a 6-hour short course for those who are looking to try the sport for the first time. Think of it as a bit like adventure racing stripped down to just the trekking and navigational activities, which are often some of the hardest elements of the race.
This event will be perfect for adventure racing teams who are looking to learn how to navigate more efficiently in future events. It allows athletes to concentrate simply on honing their navigational skills without worrying about some of the other demands that come along with an adventure race. But make no mistake, rogaining competitions are tough and demanding as well, and there will no doubt be some excellent teams in taking part in this event.
The field this year is being limited to just 40 teams, so if you’re interested in joining in on the fun, you’ll want to register soon. For more information about the competition and to learn more about the fantastic setting in which it will take place, visit PeakAssurance.net.
And for those who are already fans of orienteering competitions, this will be your chance to scope out the territory in which the 2014 World Rogaining Championships will be held. That event will take place in August of that year as well and plans are already in motion to prepare an even more challenging and beautiful course for the international competitors who will descend on South Dakota for that competition.
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