The control location is the feature, circled on the map, which you are looking for. The control may be a hill (knoll), clearing, cliff, path, building or some other man-made of natural feature which is marked on your map. The actual physical control is (usually) an orange and white flag with code letters on it. There will be a punch attached. Use this to mark the corresponding space on your control card to verify you have found the control.
Orienteering courses are designed to challenge your map-reading skills. Maps used for orienteering are topographic; they show the shape of the land
Orienteering courses are designed to challenge your map-reading skills. Maps used for orienteering are topographic; they show the shape of the land — hills, valleys, and the like. An orienteering map also shows other features relevant to an orienteer — streams, trails, fences, fields, thick brush and so on. Long black arrows across the map show the direction of magnetic north. The legend at the bottom of the map shows the symbols used for features. Read the map by comparing features on the map to the features you are passing on the way to the control. Standard orienteering maps are printed in five colors; each color is used for a different class of features:
|Black:||Man-made features, such as roads, trails, buildings, fences, power lines, but also rock features such as cliffs and boulders.|
|Brown:||Contour lines to show the shape of the land such as hills, valleys, ridges, earth banks and ditches; contour lines indicate the height of land features and how steep they are.|
|Blue:||Water features, such as lakes, ponds, swamps and creeks (these may be dry).|
|White:||(the color of the paper): Normal forest, can ruun or walk unimpeded.|
|Yellow:||Open land, clearings and fields.|
|Green:||Thicker vegetation such as bushes or dense tree growth. The deeper the shade of green the thicker the vegetation.|
|Knoll:||A small hill|
|Spur:||A small protrusion on a hillside, looks like a nose.|
|Re-entrant:||A small valley running down a hillside.|
Control locations are identified by a circle drawn around the control feature on the orienteering map. The control feature should be located in the middle of the circle. The two control features hi-lited are a path junction and a spring.
The control or control flag is normally three dimensional and made of orange and white nylon. It is usually hung from a stand or tree. Attached to the control is a coded punch used to verify that the control location has been found. The punch may either be manual or electronic.