uncrossable-fenceAt last week’s Wentworth park twilight event both the Long and Medium courses had a straight line option to cross what was mapped as an uncrossable fence. For inexperienced orienteers not aware of it, a crossable fence has single diagonal bars on the map whereas an uncrossable fence (usually too high to easily cross without possible damage arising) has double bars along its length.

On the medium course the control outside the fence was actually described in the control descriptions as “tree outside uncrossable fence”.  However the long course went some distance to a beach so didn’t have the “warning” in the control descriptions.  Under normal circumstances crossing a mapped uncrossable fence results in disqualification.  On this occasion one long course competitor admitted leaping over the fence and, after investigation, several other competitors were  found to have crossed it.  Given the nature of these events, the organisers decided not to disqualify any competitor found to have crossed the fence, but to apply a 1 minute time penalty to their overall time.  

However, competitors are reminded that, in the future, crossing an uncrossable fence, or any part of the map marked out of bounds, is liable to result in disqualification.

Bert Elson, Course Planner for Wednesday’s event.