Wellington Orienteering Club

About Orienteering

Orienteering is a family of sports that require navigational skills using a map and compass to navigate from point to point in diverse and usually unfamiliar terrain. Participants are given a map, usually a specially prepared orienteering map, which they use to find control points. Originally a training exercise in land navigation for military officers, orienteering has developed many variations. Among these, the oldest and the most popular is foot orienteering. Other types of Orienteering are:

  • Mountain bike orienteering
  • Ski orienteering
  • Rogaining
  • Adventure racing

The history of orienteering begins in the late 19th century in Sweden, the actual term "orienteering" was first used in 1886 and meant the crossing of unknown land with the aid of a map and a compass. In Sweden, orienteering grew from military training in land navigation into a competitive sport for military officers, then for civilians. The first orienteering competition open to the public was held in Norway in 1897.