Morven Park

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May 8

Morven GroundsWelcome to our second One Cowboy Relay at this unique venue! Yes, we will have traditional beginner (white, yellow) and intermediate (orange) courses too, so whether you're a beginner or an advanced runner, this event is for you.

Event timing will be standard for the white, yellow and orange courses: register any time between 10:45 - 1:15, start any time between 11 - 1:30, and be back before 3pm.

For the "advanced" courses, which means the One Cowboy Relay courses, there will be a Mass Start at High Noon. Courses consist of a variety of loops, in motala format for those familiar with the Swedish term. To put it another way, the advanced courses consist of a one-person relay event where each runner is expected to be 100% of their relay team - so there's no waiting around for anyone to finish their relay loop before you start yours. And by the way, these courses are not just for "advanced" orienteers - all the loops except the 5k long one are in or near open fields, so anyone, beginner, intermediate or advanced, should feel free to do these courses.

The twist of this event is that the initial (3) relay loops are taken in random order, i.e. some runners start on Loop A, some start on Loop B and others start on Loop C., so blindly following any particular runner may lead you to the wrong control (they may not be on the same loop as you). Controls are closely spaced on similar features to add to the confusion. The initial three random loops each contain 5 control locations and are 1.0 km in length (please note that the fifth control on all three loops is the same, #150, located at the start/finish). There are three variations of this relay configuration. One, run the initial three loops only and stop, 3.0 km total distance; this is called the "advanced/short" course. Two, run the initial three loops (3.0 km) plus a separate short (2.6 km) additional loop and stop (the "advanced/medium"). Or, three, run the initial three loops (3.0 km) plus a separate long (5.2 km) additional loop and stop ("advanced/long"). Take your choice, climb on these courses except for the long version (and even that version has relatively little climb) is minimal.

Update: How does this work? The first three loops are printed on one sheet, as three smaller maps side by side going from left to right. Your first loop is the first map (the one to the left); your second loop is the middle map, and your last loop is the map to the right. As you finish each loop, you will be required to punch a common control (#150) at the end of that loop before proceeding to the next loop. All runners doing the relay will be mass started at a predetermined time; and for advanced/medium and advanced/long runners, you'll get your final map when you finish your first three loops.

In addition to the Relay, standard White, Yellow, Orange and a Green course will be offered for those runners who do not want to participate in the relay, but still want to orienteer at Morven Park. FYI, the Green course offered is actually the Long (5.2 km) final loop of the relay.

Any youth or large groups attending, please contact the Event Director so that we can coordinate pre-registration for your group; the group registration and waiver form is part of the information on our Group Leaders page.

And in terms of additional information:

  • A National Register Historic Property, Morven Park was for 40 years the home of Virginia Gov. Westmoreland Davis. Now a private park, more than 100,000 people visit it each year, primarily for it's equestrian center and courses, museums, historic gardens, sports fields and festivals (like this one).
  • There will not be an entrance fee.
  • Tours of the Governors Mansion will be available from noon - 4pm (last admittance 3pm); details here.
  • Dogs are welcome but must be leashed at all times.
  • Large and/or youth groups must contact us in advance if interested in attending.
  • Driving from Maryland? Consider using the relatively close White's Ferry crossing.
  • If you haven't already signed up to be allowed to enter the Quantico Marine Base for next Sunday's May 15 Combat Village event and you're even considering going, do so now via that event's webpage.

Updated! Course offering are as follows:

Advanced/Short: 3km total: three 1km loops of 5 controls each
Advanced/Medium: 5.6km total: the three loops plus a 2.6km, 8 controls, 35m climb final loop
Advanced/Long: 8.2km total: the three loops plus a 5.2km, 14 controls, 125m climb final loop
White 1.6km 12 controls 15m climb
Yellow 2.4km 11 controls 30m climb
Orange 3.9km 14 controls 65m climb
Green 5.2km, 14 controls, 125m climb


Morven Park, Southern Parking Area, Leesburg, VA (Classic & 1-Cowboy Relay)

RegistrationNo advance registration required. Just show up and have fun!
Start TimesAdvanced courses have a mass start at High Noon. Beginner and Intermediate courses (i.e. white, yellow and orange) may start any time between 11 - 1:30.
ScheduleSunday, May 8
11:00 am - 3:00 pmClassic & 1-Cowboy Relay:
Event Director:Jeremy Gillespie
Course Designer:
Location Details

Classic & 1-Cowboy Relay
Morven Park
Southern Parking Area
Leesburg, VA
Google Map

From the south via the Dulles VA-267 Toll Road: at the end of the toll road, take exit 1A on the left to merge onto US-15 South/VA-7 W towards Leesburg/Warrenton. In 2.7 miles, take the VA-7 Business exit towards Leesburg. Turn right onto Market St. Turn left onto Fairview St NW. Turn left onto Old Waterford Rd/State Route 698. In just 0.3 miles, turn right into Morven Park on Southern Planter Ln and follow the road in to the parking/registration area. Please note this lane is two-way.
Google Maps Link
Apple/iPhone Link
Course DetailsClassic & 1-Cowboy Relay
Course NameLength (km)Climb (m)No. Controls
Short Advanced 34515
Medium Advanced 5.67523
Long Advanced 8.216529
White 1.61512
Yellow 2.43011
Orange 3.96514
Green 5.212514
Course NotesClassic & 1-Cowboy Relay

The park consists of open fields separated by tree lines, plus a steeper wooded area with quite open woods. Running is generally very fast and easy, climb is minimal and control locations may be a bit tricky, but not overly technical. Please respect any areas marked on the map as out of bounds. These generally tend to be fenced horse corrals. DO NOT CLIMB THE FENCES SURROUNDING THESE CORRALS, PLEASE TREAT THESE FENCES AS UNCROSSABLE AND DO NOT ENTER THE CORRALS. If a route is indicated that crosses these fences, it is intended as a route choice option to make the runner go around the fences using a route that they feel is the most efficient. There are numerous black X’s marked on the map (i.e. man-made objects), which are, in almost all cases, horse jumps or obstacles. Only the permanent ones are mapped. However, you, as a runner, will encounter other unmapped temporary jumps scattered throughout the park. The park changes the location of these other temporary jumps on a frequent basis and they are not mapped. You will have to just ignore their existence. The trails mapped through the green vegetation areas do exist and will offer route choice options.

Entry FeesIndividual Entries

Note: juniors = under 21

Club Member, adult Club Member, junior Non-Member, adult Non-Member, junior
Epunch Owner $5 $5 $10 $5
Epunch Borrower $10 $5 $15 $10

Team or Group Entries

Participants are welcome to compete together as a single team entry. Teams containing one or more nonmembers are charged the nonmember individual rate. Teams containing one or more adults are charged the adult individual rate. For teams to receive member or junior rates, all members of the team must be members or juniors, respectively. Each extra team map beyond the first is an additional $2. Individuals or teams desiring to compete on a second course can do so for a reduced fee of $2/map.

Important Notes
  • At the event, we can only accept payment in cash or check; online, you may use a credit card or PayPal account.
  • If you have access to a smartphone, you may become a member at the event by joining online via this webpage (which also explains the member benefits). Membership is completely optional. If you wish to join or renew, we strongly recommend joining (or renewing) online before the event rather than at it to save time and because it's easier.
  • Most of our events use an 'epunch' timing chip for electronic timing. Individuals or groups without their own epunch pay a higher entry fee (see above), which includes the loan of an epunch for that event. Loaned epunches that are lost incur a $40 replacement fee. Epunches (also known as SI-cards or finger sticks) are usually available for sale at each event as described here.
  • Former QOC members who have let their membership lapse pay non-member fees.
  • Compasses are available at no charge, but if lost incur a $15 replacement fee.
  • Please provide collateral (driver's license or car keys) when borrowing a compass or epunch.
  • For additional safety, whistles are available for sale at $1/each.
  • Free beginner instruction is always available - just ask at the registration table.