Orienteers get their bearings
AN army of orienteering enthusiasts will hit the Granite Belt bushland today, ready to dominate the terrain with little more than a compass and a map..
The Easter Orienteering event is under way, with three days of competition in the Stanthorpe area.
Brisbane competitors and father-daughter duo Rachel and Peter Effeney will are looking forward to racing through the local land.
Rachel has been competing in orienteering for the past six years and it wasn't long before she had passed her love of the sport on to her dad.
Last year her sporting career grew to new heights when she represented Australia in the World Championships in France.
She said she was looking forward to getting down to business this weekend.
"I really enjoy the challenge of the navigation and the physical challenge of running through the bush," she said.
"I had always done cross country and athletics when I was younger and I got started in orienteering when I left school."
The Easter competition is held at different locations each year, with Canberra and Western Australia some of the more recent spots.
Peter said the Stanthorpe area was ideal for the sport.
"The Granite Belt is premium orienteering terrain," he said.
"The granite-based country increases the challenge of reading the maps and navigating the terrain," he said.
People have travelled from all over the country to compete at the event, with some even travelling from New Caledonia.
"This is probably the largest orienteering event for the year and it's a large carnival that caters to everyone," Peter said.
"It has been tradition that people make this part of their calendar over the Easter break."
This weekend's competition is part of the Australian team selection process and selectors will be on the look out for talent.
Where they'll be
Today - 9 am start at Applethorpe, off Barnes Rd
Tomorrow -9.30am start at Pratten, off Big Hill Rd
Monday - 9am start 8km north of Dalveen, Old Stanthorpe Rd