Map Navigation Training, Morgan Territory, Sunday 11/30/2008

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Event Update - Friday, 11/28

Remember those bubble bath ads, "Calgon, take me away?" That's what I felt like today out in the wilderness of Morgan Territory - "Morgan, take me away!"

The side of the map which we do not speak of - er, hardly ever visit - the west side of the road - is just plain beautiful, and offers different vistas of Mount Diablo and the Central Valley.

Looks like the lucky weather streak will continue, and the season of autumn is at its height here. Consider this an appetizer for next weekend's BAOC Club Championships, held on the other side of the map.

You may have some left in the tank after doing all the courses here - 4.6 km is the sum of all courses that are not trail courses, and there are 3.6 km of trail courses. (That means on-trail, not "Trail-O"!) Since this is training, with yourself or with a partner, you can do some creative things. Add controls. Create your own courses. Experiment. Do courses over with different routes.

Another option - I have the Bishop Ranch maps still, and the courses there are still streamered. So you can make it a double date - Morgan Territory, then Bishop Ranch - it's only about 25 minutes away, back in the direction you came from (for most of you.)

Course Notes - General Information

A few barbed wire fences to cross - I found easy points easily. Only saw turkeys as far as wildlife goes. Had a cow encounter though - got somewhat between mama and the calf, so mama dropped her head and started to lumber towards me. Careful there. Not as bad as the cows at Sunol.

A few steep slopes, and cleated shoes are necessary to go off trail. I had great footing however, the ground has the perfect amount of softness from this week's rain. Poison oak here and there, not terribly abundant in the areas I'm covering with the courses. It's decloaked - no leaves, so a bit harder to notice; let's just say swerve around those leafless bushes, shall we?

Map will be printed at a 1:10000 scale on 8.5 x 14" paper, the contour interval is 5 m. The off-trail terrain used for the courses is very runnable - negligible brush and scrub, predominantly oak forest and grass.

Courses - Specific Information

Trails have changed a lot since the map was made (only in 2001!) I have made some updates, but did not have time to do a thorough job - I focused in the vicinity of controls for the Route Contour course, and along the trails taken for the Trail 1 course.

1. Trail 1 - practice basic navigation skills, like an orienteering "White" course, 7 checkpoints, 1.7 km distance, 75 m climb
2. Route Contour - advanced level, with 2 route choice legs, and 4 contour legs; 6 checkpoints, 1.4 km distance, 50 m climb; After the first 2 controls checkpoints, the remainder of the control checkpoints are not marked on the map, except for the last control which doubles as the finish. Starting at #2, follow the contour line and you will see the next 4 bags, ending with the finish. You will have a clue sheet with the numbers of each.

Either of the the first two courses will get you near the start of the next two. If you're an intermediate level navigator, you may choose either course to get out to the next course.

3. Trail 2 - like Trail 1, but a different course, 6 checkpoints, 1.9 km distance, 110 m climb
4. Route - good practice for intermediate and advanced navigators for choosing and executing routes. Intermediate to advanced navigational difficulty, like an orienteering "Orange" course, but a bit harder in spots, 5 checkpoints, 2.5 km distance, 115 m climb. May be shortened.
5. Quick - 6 controls, 0.7 km distance, 40 m climb. Good practice for any level of experience - quick decision making, large changes of direction, in a small area. Similar to an orienteering "Sprint" course.

To get back to the registration area from courses 3-5 involves hiking or jogging the Trail 1 course in reverse. In total for the outing, you could get up to 7.5 km of navigation, training, and moving between staging points on the map.

Original Announcement

This event will happen rain or shine! An update and complete details will be posted the week before the event.

Morgan Territory features beautiful oak woodlands, grassland, lots of rock features, and a fair amount of steepness. We will visit the west side of Morgan Territory Rd. to train - BAOC's event Sunday, Dec. 7th is on the east side of the road.


10:00 Registration and courses open
12:00 It is recommended you set out by noon to fully enjoy what the training has to offer.
02:00 Courses close - please return to the finish by 2:00!

Cost: $12 adults, $7 juniors for any and all courses; $2 discount for preregistering online (no commitment to show.)

Directions: From I-580 in Livermore, exit onto N. Livermore Ave. and turn north. Shortly after N. Livermore curves left (west), turn right onto Morgan Territory Road and follow it for about 5.5 miles to the staging area. From Walnut Creek/Concord, take Clayton Road to Marsh Creek Road, then turn right onto Morgan Territory Road. The staging area is 9.4 miles from Marsh Creek Road.

Turn right into the parking lot, and look for the terraloco sign and an orange and white control bag.

Event Contact: Rex, 5 1 0 - 6 8 1 - 6 1 8 1,

Morgan Territory Regional Preserve web page, East Bay Regional Parks District