Lake Accotink

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September 19

Pre-registration is now open and is required.

Welcome to the first event of QOC's 2021-2022 season! We're returning to Lake Accotink, a Fairfax County Park, for the first time since 2018. We'll be using the McClaren-Sargent shelter as in the past (see locator map) and will be offering white through red classic courses to get everyone back into the orienteering swing. QOC will also be hosting the Northern Virginia Senior Olympics (NVSO) orienteering competition; the NVSO short course will use the QOC white course, and the NVSO advanced course will use QOC Brown.

We will be using the main parking lot, near the end of Accotink Park Rd just below the dam (see locator map), with a walk of 400 meters to check-in. All QOC signage will point you towards the main parking lot. There is also a smaller parking lot nearer the McClaren-Sargent shelter that is approached from an entirely different direction than the main parking lot. For GPS purposes, the address for the small lot is 5660 Heming Avenue, Springfield VA. Unless you are a volunteer or arrive on the early side, you are probably better off going to the main lot, as if you go to the small lot and it is filled, you'll have a substantial drive to get back around to the main lot.

To ensure a safe orienteering event in the ongoing COVID environment, and also in keeping with CDC guidance, we will continue using the club safety guidelines and special measures that we successfully used last season, albeit with a few modifications. PLEASE READ CAREFULLY so you know what to expect during the 2021-2022 season:

  • All participants MUST pre-register online. Pre-registration will open via the link below on Monday, Sept. 13 at 6pm and will close at 12 noon on Saturday Sept. 18 (the day before the event). Pre-registration is first come, first served, as always.
  • Refunds will only be provided if the event is cancelled.
  • When pre-registering, all participants will select a 15- or 45-minute time window during which to check in at the administration table to and get maps; please make sure to arrive during the time you select.
  • These time windows are intended to reduce congestion at check-in and e-punch both for safety and event management purposes. There are eight fifteen-minute windows in the typically more popular morning period followed by two 45-minute window.
  • QOC will be increasing the caps for each window from last season to afford additional start slots. More information on the specific number of starts per window will be available prior to the opening of pre-registration. Note the pre-registration window schedule:
    • 09:45 – 10:00am – map pickup and start course between 10 and 10:15am
    • 10:00 – 10:15am – map pickup and start course between 10:15 and 10:30am
    • 10:15 – 10:30am – map pickup and start course between 10:30 and 10:45am
    • 10:30 – 10:45am – map pickup and start course between 10:45 and 11:00am
    • 10:45 – 11:00am – map pickup and start course between 11 and 11:15am
    • 11:00 – 11:15am – map pickup and start course between 11:15 and 11:30am
    • 11:15 – 11:30am – map pickup and start course between 11:30 and 11:45am
    • 11:30 – 11:45am – map pickup and start course between 11:45 and Noon
    • 11:45am – 12:30pm – map pick up and start course between 12:30 and 12:45pm
    • 12:30pm - 1:15pm – map pick up and start course before 1:30pm
  • All participants (or group leaders on behalf of juniors) will be asked at the administration table to declare that they and their children/youth group participants do not have a fever (body temperature above 100.4 degrees F.)
  • Given the risk profile of many of our volunteers, recently increased rates of COVID contraction in our area, and the threat of the Delta variant, QOC will maintain its mask requirement during the 2021-2022 season until further notice. All participants and volunteers, regardless of vaccination status, must wear face covering when in the process of checking in, e-punch registration/download, queuing for the start (if necessary) and any other interaction with others in conjunction with event-specific activities.
  • Social distancing will be in effect with line spacing at all administrative locations as well as at the start (if needed). Prescribed distancing is 6 ft (2m) between individuals and/or groups.
  • Youth or other group leaders will pick up maps, e-punches, compasses and any other needed items for the entirely of their group to minimize congestion.
  • No food items will be provided
  • Especially IMPORTANT: Participants are responsible for bringing full canteens, camelbaks, bottled water in a backpack or other portable water containers with them to meet all their individual or group hydration needs before, during and after their courses; a very limited supply of bottled water for emergency use will be stocked on hand; it is vital to stay well hydrated during September in northern Virginia, so please come equipped!
  • E-punches and compasses will be available as usual
  • There will not be any full, on-site beginner instruction, and beginners are encouraged to watch relevant videos such as this one created by QOC's instructional guru David Onkst before arriving at the park. However, there will be a volunteer on hand to ensure that first-time orienteers know how to get to the start and use the e-punch.
  • Although we all normally enjoy socializing before and after our runs, this season QOC will again follow a policy of "Come, run, leave" to minimize risk to participants.
As always, please be off the course no later than 3pm and remember to download at our e-punch station even if you did not finish. We don't want to spend time searching for people who have left the park without checking out. Thanks in advance!

Also, make sure to check out our Your First Event and For Beginners webpages, and if they don't answer any question you have, just use our Contact Form and ask away!

Group Leaders: please see our For Group Leaders webpage and then contact the Event Director so we can get you registered in advance and contact the event director to apprise him of your plans.

Additional Information:

  • Rest rooms are located at McClaren-Sargent Pavilion
  • White and Yellow courses will start and finish near the registration area. All other courses will start and finish near the dam, a few hundred meters walk away from parking and registration. Please plan accordingly.
  • Contour interval for all maps is 5m.
  • The hours for the Lake Accotink carousel, boat rentals, miniature golf, bike rentals and snackbar are likely to be Noon - 7pm at this time of year. More park details are here.
  • Dogs are allowed in the park but must be on the leash at all times.


Lake Accotink Park, McLaren-Sargent Pavilion, Springfield, VA (Classic)

RegistrationRegistration for this event will open at 6pm on Monday Sept. 13 via this link. Registration will close at noon on Saturday Sept. 18 (the day before the event).
Who's registered? Check by clicking here. Sorting by column is possible too - just click on the column name.

Start TimesStart times will be by windows (to be defined for this event before registration opens).
ScheduleSunday, September 19
10:00 am - 3:00 pmClassic:
Event Director:Charles Carrick
Course Designer:Charles Carrick
Location Details

Lake Accotink Park
McLaren-Sargent Pavilion
Springfield, VA
Google Map

From the North or South: use I-495/Beltway exit 54AB/Braddock Rd/Rt 620, heading east on Rt 620/Braddock Rd as you exit. In ~0.8 miles, turn right on Heming Ave. In ~1.3 miles, turn right at the Lake Accotink Park sign and follow the park road to the parking area. The pavilion is up a small path starting at the far (west) end of the parking lot.

Alternative parking is available in the lower parking lot (7500 Accotink Park Rd,, Springfield). It's a short walk from there to the pavilion where registration is located; follow signs or ask someone how to get to the McLaren-Sargent pavilion.
Links to Lower Parking Lot:
Google Maps Link
Apple/iPhone Link

Course DetailsClassic
Course NameLength (km)Climb (m)No. Controls
White 1.6309
Yellow 2.67510
Orange 4.117013
Brown 3.416510
Green 5.121515
Red 727021
Course NotesClassic

Trails are generally accurate with a few previously unmapped ones having recently been added. However, the vegetation is generally greener than shown. This will be most noticeable in a fairly consistent failure when it comes to indicating what on much newer maps would be the difference between open woods (white) and slow running (light green).

Much of the abundant chain link fencing has gaps and segments broken down by fallen trees and soil erosion and will allow runners to move across depicted fence lines; most gaps are shown on the map and some large sections that have were removed at some point are no longer shown; be aware of occasional barbed wire strands on the ground where the fencing has collapsed Water is BYO--make sure you have brought whatever water you need for pre-course, on-course, and post-course consumption with you; there is NO WATER on the course.

White and Yellow participants, your courses run through the most heavily used parts of the park, so you will have picnickers and other park users in proximity for much of your courses.

Entry FeesIndividual Entries

Note: juniors = under 21

Club Member, adult Club Member, junior Non-Member, adult Non-Member, junior
$10 $5 $20 $5

Group Entries

Participants are welcome to orienteer together as a group (up to the maximum for that event; usually 4). Each member of a group is charged their individual rate as shown above, up to a group total of $30 (maximum), and each receives a map. A group receives one epunch. Individuals or groups desiring to compete on a second course after completing their first can do so for a reduced fee of $2/map subject to approval at the event by the Event Director.

Important Notes
  • If you wish to become a QOC member you should join online in advance via this webpage (which also explains the member benefits). Membership is completely optional.
  • Most of our events use an 'epunch' timing chip for electronic timing. Individuals or groups without their own epunch will be loaned one for that event. Loaned epunches that are lost incur a $40 replacement fee. Epunches (also known as SI-cards or finger sticks) can be purchased from online vendors 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 (such as car keys) when borrowing a compass or epunch.
  • There is no planned, on-site beginner instruction, but beginners are encouraged to watch relevant videos such as this one created by QOC's instructional guru David Onkst