Heading for hill

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By MATTHEW MCKEW

A good sense of direction — or a dog with a nose for it — will be vital for those taking part in Coronet Peak’s Summer Rogaine and Dogaine, in Queenstown tomorrow.

Rogaine’s an orienteering event in which teams or individuals calculate the best route to as many checkpoints as possible before the one-and-a-half or two-and-a-half hour time limit expires.

Organiser Emily Forne — who’s married to internationally-renowned orienteer and world champ Chris — says it’s a great way to get outside, explore and exercise while having fun.

‘‘It caters for a lot of different ability levels because the guns will be trying to get to as many checkpoints as they can, whereas those doing it more cruisy can aim for four or five checkpoints.’’

Each mark is worth a different number of points, and Forne says there’s no correlation with difficulty, encouraging newbies to the sport to go for the big points and letting the experienced hands decide if the low pointers are worth the effort.

Coronet Peak boss Nigel Kerr — who’s known for being followed around by his faithful hound — suggested a separate category for those wanting to enter with their pups called a ‘Dogaine’.

‘‘We’ve had such amazing feedback already, so it seems a popular idea,’’ Forne says.

She hopes the dog element will entice more people to give the Remarkables Orienteering Club event a go and get them hooked on the sport.

To enter, visit www.roc.org.nz — maps will be handed out from 9am on Saturday at the Coronet Peak cafe.

All entrants have to take a jacket and cellphone, with compass and food/water recommended.

matthew.mckew@scene.co.nz