FEATURE THE GREAT OUTDOORS
:— Short cut to ﬁtness
Sundays are traditionally days for slobbing out in front ofthe box while recovering from the excess of the previous two nights and preparing mentally. if not physically. for Monday. Alternatively. if you don’t want to contribute to Scotland‘s unenviable pole position in the heart disease league, then Sundays are also the days on which the majority of local orienteering events take place.
Orienteering developed last century as a military exercise in the Scandinavian countries and swiftly grew in popularity there until it was overtaking athletics as a participation sport. The ﬁrst orienteering events in Scotland began during the war when a number of Norwegian students started thrashing around in the bracken at Strathpeffer in the Highlands. Today their legacy is over 32 orienteering clubs in Scotland.
In a nutshell. orienteering involves navigating your way around a set of pre-arranged points over rough terrain in the shortest time possible. using a compass, map and sturdy pair of legs. All you need in the way of equipment
W; a: V. I r
is a good pair of running shoes and loose clothing (no shorts. unless you want your legs scratched to ribbons by brambles). As a further incentive to getting off your backside. the linest orienteering terrain in Britain is right
on your doorstep.
Success in orienteering doesn‘t go necessarily to the fastest runner .and the shortest route. as the crow ﬂies. may not be the quickest. ‘You can be successful without being fantastically ﬁt.‘ says David Sloan. secretary of Glasgow University Orienteering Club. ‘There‘s a lot more to orienteering than just running. You have to concentrate and use your brain to overcome the navigational challenges as well.‘
'1 his balance between mental and physical agility attracts people of all ages from ten-year-olds up to septagenarians. Come the last weekend in May. over 1000 people, armed with just a compass and a map. will be pounding their way around the countryside outside Oban. ﬁnding their way from A to C. via B. and back again. in this year‘s Scottish Orienteering Championship. (Jonathan Trew)
If'WHl wan! mﬁnd all! more about orienteering and wltere your nearest (In!) is mntuet the British Orienteering Federation on 0629 734042.
:— Over the sea to Skye
This is, literally, a story straight out at a “Boy’s Own’ paper. One day in 1934, two energetic young men paddled oii in a canoe which took them all the way irom Glasgow to Skye. Alastair Ounnet and James Adam had little experience oi canoeing - the idea came irom a story written ior their own magazine “The Claymore’, a publication iull oi tales oi derring-do. But having sent their iictional heroes up the Clyde, the pair thought it only ialr to try the trip themselves. The lourney took several months but despite bad weather and sceptics who tried to persuade them to abandon the idea, they made it.
low on the 60th anniversary oi the canoe trip, it’s being undertaken again by John Stott, who hopes to paddle solo to Skye, unaided, in the rather shorter time oi iourteen days - weather permitting. Stott is an experienced canoeist and will be better equipped than Ounnet and Adam; on board he will have camping equipment, a VHF radio, ilares and
I lochgollhead Activity Centre near Caimdow. Argyll. 03013 217. Open all year. Facilities: windsurﬁng. canoeing. kayaking. dinghy. topper and keel boat sailing. fun board water skiing, assault course. two international orienteering courses. rock climbing. archery, abseiling, river climbing. gorge scrambling. indoor climbing wall. target archery, indoor riﬂe range, rafting. swimming. hillwalking. power boats and a ﬁeld study centre. Groups only. An adventure weekend will cost £23 plus VAT for accommodation. equipment. selfcatering facilities and instruction. I loch inst latersports and Skiing GUI!" Kincraig. Inverness-shire, 0540 651272. Open all year: alpine and Nordic skiing. mono ski. snow surf board. dry ski slope, sailing. windsurﬁng, hillwalking, cycling. orienteering and raft building.
emergency rations. And in the best traditions oi the intrepid explorer, Stott will be visiting schools on the way to preach the joys oi canoeing.
‘l iirst read Alistair Ounnet’s book a number oi years ago and I was inspired by the idea that someone had the determination to see such a trip through despite the lack oi equipment, and I decided that I’d like to complete this lourney,’ explains Stott.
There are all kinds oi canoes around, irom tourers to river and white water
Individuals catered for. Costs £12 a day for mountain bike hire.
I loch Morllch Watersports Centre near Aviemore, Inverness-shire. 0479 861221. Summer season. Facilities: sailing, windsurﬁng, rowing. canoeing and kayaking. Individuals catered for. Costs from £15 for 1%. hours windsurﬁng equipment hire and instruction.
I lochore Meadows Country Park Crosshill, Fife. 0592 860086. Water sports from 26 March to 31 October. all other activities throughout the year. Facilities: windsurﬁng. horse riding, canoeing. sailing, hillwalking. power boating. abseiling and climbing. Individuals catered for. Costs from £17.50 for two- hours windsurﬁng instruction including equipment hire.
I loch Park Adventure Centre Keith. Banffshire. 0542 810334. Open all year. Facilities: canoeing. kayaking, gorge walk, ropes course. mountain biking.
rapid models, but they are all based on llorth American and Eskimo designs. The canoe Stott will be paddling is nearly seventeen ieet long and is not as manoeuvreable as an inland canoe because it’s designed to plough through stretches oi rough water. He'll be taking the same route as the original pair, setting oii irom Bowling on the Clyde, crossing loch Fyne, Crinan Canal and Oban through to the llebrldean Islands and finally arriving at Kyle in mid-June. All proceeds will
wayfaring and ﬂy ﬁshing. Individuals catered for. Kayak hire £12 a day.
I Osprey Windsurﬁng Aberfoyle. 0360 440520. June to September. Windsurﬁng hire and instruction at £6 for a two hour session.
I Port Edgar Marina and Sailing School near South Queensferry. Lothian, 031 331 3330. April to October. Sailing. canoeing. power boats and cruises. Individuals catered for. A ﬁve— day, basic dinghy sailing course costs from £103.
I Snowgoose Holidays and Activities Fort William. 0397 772467. Open all year. Facilities: canoeing, sailing. climbing. hillwalking. winter mountaineering and skiing. Individuals catered for. Costs from £25 a day for multi-activities.
I Shamclyde Park Strathclyde, 0698 266155. Open all year. Facilities: sailing, canoeing. windsurﬁng. water skiing. parascending. mountain biking. orienteering routes and guided walks.
SCOTTISH SPORTS COUNCIUCIIRIS WATT
be going to the lilill.
This is canoeing at its most extreme oi course; you don’t have to take to the open seas. Beginners usually start on ilat water where they can learn the basics oi paddling in a straight line, turning and how to wriggle out the canoe when it capsizes, as it inevitably will. But having mastered the basics, the rush oi whitewater or the steady swell oi the sea is always waiting. (Ruth Thomas)
See listings ior canoe courses.
individuals catered for. Costs from £94.65 for ﬁfteen hours of windsurﬁng tuition and equipment hire leading to Royal Yacht Association certiﬁcation.
I Tlghnabruaich Sailing School Argyll. 0700 811396. Open from May to September. Windsurﬁng and dinghy sailing. Weekly courses offering six days equipment hire and tuition from £130. Accommodation is extra.
I Wigbay Sailing and Outdoor Centre Stranraer, 0776 703535. Open mid-May to mid-September. Windsurﬁng. sailing. power boating and organised walks. Individuals catered for. A half-day windsurﬁng taster session is £12 for equipment hire and tuition.
WIN AN INTER-BAIL
PASS 0N PAGE 94
16 The List 20 May—2 June 1994