Tuesday, 25 July 2017

1977 Canadian Orienteering Championships

The 1977 Canadian Orienteering Championships where held in Wentworth, Nova Scotia. Arne Naess was the meet director and this was the first time they were hosted outside of Ontario or Quebec. It was also the first time the event was moved to the middle of the summer instead of the fall to take advantage of the summer break and give competitors a chance to make a vacation around it which is now the norm.

Although I don't know the actual number of competitors that came to the event, it was quite well attended due in part to a creative marketing program. At the 1976 COC’s in Ottawa the year previous, all the competitors from Nova Scotia had large white patches (approve 6x12 in) sewed on to the back of everyones orienteering suits that read “FOLLOW ME TO NOVA SCOTIA”. The front of all the suits had the provincial flag. Additionally, as all of the folks were leaving on the last day of the event, we had a dozen maritimers handing out Nova Scotia flags,  pins and information packets to everyone and invited them personally to attend.

Oivind Naess from Day 1 at the 1977 COCs

The two day classic races were both held on the Wentworth West map which had been field worked by two well know Swedish mappers named Anders Timner and Kjell Larson in 1975.  Final field checking was done by Phillip Fisher who was the executive director at OANS (Orienteering Association of Nova Scotia) and then the map was drawn by Arne Naess.  Other volunteers that played a significant role in the event were Marg and Dick James, Barry Wheeler, Kirk Meldrum, and Freda Wales who was one of the key people who started orienteering in the province.

Anders Timner and Kjell Larson, mappers of the 1977 COC terrain

Here is the map featuring the H12 course from day one:

Pictures and story submitted by Oivind Naess

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