Training Program Choices

Foothills Orienteering offers several different types of orienteering training and outdoor programs for all ages and abilities:

SOGO@School, SOGO Groups, (customized programs for schools and community groups)

Introduction to Orienteering Clinics Not Available at this time (single 1.5 to 2 hours sessions, new to orienteering, adults and youth 16+)

Navigation 101 Sessions (4-week series of 1.15-hour sessions, beginner adults and youth 16+)

Forest Navigation (2-hour sessions on a forest map, beginner orienteers)

Forest Orienteering Training (weekend sessions based around event schedule, intermediate to advanced)


Every kid can get outside: move-learn-navigate. SOGO @School can enhance school curriculum by providing students a fun, highly motivating adventure running program: teaching students skills of navigation, endurance, agility, and speed. Programs are custom-delivered in Calgary and surrounding communities for preschool kids to high-school youth. Learn more at

Introduction to Orienteering Clinics - Check out the Try It Events!

Navigation 101 sessions


Navigation 101 is an orienteering program for beginner orienteers consisting of 4 specially designed 1.25 hour lessons over 4 weeks:

    1.Map Reading 101
    2.Heading in the Right Direction
    3.Following the Terrain (or Heading in a Better Direction)
    4.The High Road or the Low Road – It’s Your Choice!

By the end of the 4 lessons you will:

  • Know and understand how an orienteering map represents the terrain and know the basic important symbols and features on an orienteering map;
  • Know how to hold, fold, and orient the map;
  • Know how to move effectively through the terrain at whatever pace you prefer;
  • Be able to effectively choose a route and follow multiple handrails from one control to the next.

When in 2024?

Navigation 101 will start on Wednesday, May 29, 2024 and finish on June 19. Times for the course are 5:00pm to 6:15pm.

Please be ready to start right on time (at 5:00pm) so we can make the most of the scheduled time.


A different city park each week: Edworthy Park, Carburn Park, Fish Creek @ Votier's Flats & Nose Hill @ Shaganappi.

For whom?

Navigation 101 is an beginner course for adult members of FWOC. They are designed for members who have run a few courses in advance of the lessons. Kids under the age of 15 should register for our SOGO Adventure Running program instead.

We think these programs are great for everyone but especially for those that want to:

  • Improve their map reading skills;
  • Become more comfortable in parks or just spending more time outdoors;
  • Learn a new sport;
  • Improve their orienteering and navigation skills.

Why should I sign up?

You should sign up for Navigation 101 Program for the following reasons:

  • It is a fun way to spend a series of Wednesday evenings outdoors learning new skills.
  • You will become part of a great community of active outdoorsy people.
  • It will set you up for a lifetime of adventure.

How do I sign up?

Registration must be done in advance online: Nav 101 registration


Navigation 101: $60.00 and includes a 2024 4-event-free pass.

Included in the Navigation 101 registration fee is:

  • 4 weeks of lessons
  • 4 weeks of WEO events immediately after lesson
  • 4 additional WEO events of your choosing
  • Whistle

Registration deadlines:

Registration will open April 1. There is a minimum number of 6 participants needed to run the program. If you have any questions about registration or any other aspect of the program please email: [email protected]

Forest Navigation


Forest Navigation is an orienteering program designed to introduce urban orienteers to the forest. Registrants should have participated in the Wednesday Evening Orienteering (WEO) events, Nav 101 or the TNT series.

By the end of each session, you will:

  • Have a better understanding of how an orienteering map represents the terrain and become more familiar with the symbols and features on a forest orienteering map;
  • Understand the importance of orienting the map at each control;
  • Know how to move effectively through the terrain at whatever pace you prefer;
  • Become better at making route choices, ones that suit you but also the map and terrain.

When and where?


For whom?

Forest Navigation is a program for adult members of FWOC to introduce them to forest orienteering. You should be comfortable participating / competing in an intermediate level course on a city park map.

Why should I sign up?

You should sign up for Forest Navigation for the following reasons:

  • It is a fun way to spend a morning enhancing your orienteering skills.
  • It is a safe way to try forest orienteering.
  • It will open up a world of orienteering. Once you master forest orienteering, you can travel the world competing at some terrific events and seeing those places from a different perspective.

How do I sign up?

Registration must be done in advance online.


Forest Navigation: $20.00 / session

Registration deadlines:

Registration will open April 1. There is a minimum number of 6 participants needed to run the program. If you have any questions about registration or any other aspect of the program, please email: [email protected]

Forest Events

FWOC will host four forest or training events this year. Two sessions will be B Meets and 2 sessions will be training style events.

B Meets

The B Meets will be regular events in the forest with 3 to 4 courses offered to accommodate beginners to advanced orienteers. There will be SI units in the terrain identified by regular orienteering control flags. There will be a 2-3 hour start window depending on registration. You must sign up for a specific 20-minute start period. There will be a time limit to be out on the course. Due to COVID, no congregating will be allowed. You must wear a mask in the finish arena.

  1. April 28, 2024 - Spring Opener @ Rumsey 11 am to 2pm.
  2. August 23-25, 2024 - AOCs, Sandy McNabb
  3. Sept 15, 2024 - B-Meet, BVPP

Training Events

The training events will have courses set for intermediate to advanced orienteers with pin flags in the terrain. These events will be self-timed.

  1. July 5-7, 2024 - Training Camp near Barrier Lake


Eligibility: You MUST be a member of FWOC or another Canadian orienteering club to participate.

All sessions in this program are aimed at intermediate to advanced adult (16+) orienteers. Participants should be comfortable in the forest by themselves.

Cost: $15 / B Meet or Training session; Training Camps have a separate fee, TBD.

Register: On-line registration is mandatory and opens April 1.

Questions may be directed to Marsha at [email protected].

Safety Information

Orienteering is an outdoor activity that carries a risk of personal injury due to natural and man-made hazards and environmental conditions. In addition to this, for orienteers in the Bow Valley and other parks close Calgary, there is the risk of an encounter with a bear or other large mammal. The participant acknowledges these risks and agrees to take responsibility by

  1. understanding the potential dangers (as described in the waiver n the registration page);
  2. knowing the safety bearing on the map;
  3. knowing the maximum allowed time AND returning on time;
  4. informing the coach when they are back; and
  5. acting responsibly in the forest to reduce risk, especially in the event of a large animal encounter. This may include carrying bear spray (and knowing how to use it appropriately).

The organizers of orienteering events prepare a Safety and Emergency Action Plan that covers how to reasonably minimize these risks and what to do in case of participant injury or if a participant is overdue. The Coach at these trainings is also the Safety Chief and has up-to-date First Aid certification.

Bear Spray

  • Carrying bear spray in trainings and races is recommended for all adults.
  • Most FWOC club members run with bear spray in the forest.
  • All coaches will carry bear spray.

Bear Spray Information

The Government of Alberta has several different documents to access to improve your knowledge of bears:

  1. Government of Alberta: Alberta BearSmart:
  2. Government of Alberta SRD: Bear deterrents:
  3. Government of Alberta: BearSmart Colouring & Activity Book:

How to carry bear spray during your training:

  • Bear Cozy – a bear spray holder that fits directly into the water bottle holder on your waist-belt.
  • Scat Belt – a special waist belt designed to carry bear spray.

COVID Safety Information

Here is what you need to do as early as possible on the day of the event (but continue to monitor your health throughout the day and do not attend if you are feeling unwell):

  1. Submit a completed Individual Declaration of Health for each attendee (only valid for the day the form is submitted). You can also find this form on
  2. Read the guidelines for participation in Foothills Orienteering Club Events during pandemic. Important points in these guidelines include:
    • If you have any COVID-19 symptoms or have had close contact with someone with COVID-19 in the last 14 days, stay home.
    • Practice physical and social distancing including 2m separation from people not within your family or cohort.
    • Bring your own supplies including water as none will be provided.
    • Consider wearing a mask when not out on course.
    • Eliminate contact with communal surfaces at the start and finish areas.
    • Do not touch orienteering flags or ribbons.
    • If using a SI finger stick, place it carefully without touching the unit.
    • Please be sure to follow basic personal hygiene rules and wash/sanitize your hands before and after being on a course.
    • Follow the event organizer’s event specific rules and measures to reduce the risk of contacting or spreading Covid19.
  3. Prepare to bring your own hand sanitizer to the event and consider wearing a mask when not on course to protect yourself and others. You will not be able to register for SI Courses or purchase Foothills Orienteering memberships at this event. We will provide course maps and SI finger sticks to registrants if you are not able to bring your own. We will have some sanitizing and personal protective equipment for our volunteers to use as needed, but please bring your own sanitizer, mask, water, and any other equipment you feel would be helpful to protect yourself and others.
  4. Remember that everyone sees the risks and rewards of outdoor sport during a pandemic differently, so please err on the side of caution and help ensure that everyone at the event (especially the general public) is comfortable with the measures you are taking to ensure physical distancing and personal hygiene.