The Tollymore Festival of Orienteering – Saturday NI Colour Series 4

Venue Slieve Martin
Date Sat, 22nd Jun 24
Starts 11:00 to 13:00
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Event Description

Date Saturday 22 June 2024
Venue Slieve Martin
Event Format Northern Ireland Colour Series 4

This event is Day 2 of the three-day Tollymore Festival of Orienteering which includes the Warrenpoint Urban race on Friday; this NICS event on Slieve Martin on Saturday; camping at Tollymore and a BBQ after this race on Saturday, and a fun relay and other activities on Sunday. For full details, see the Festival page.

Online Entry .
SI Entries
Online Entry closes Monday 17 June 2024, 11pm
Registration, Start and Finish Start times 1100-1300.

The White, Yellow and Orange courses will start and finish close to to registration/car park. Courses close at 3pm.

Other courses will have a remote start and finish.  TD4-5 courses close 3.30pm.

Walk to start from registration/parking is about a 1k plus 210m climb – allow 20 minutes. The path is good, but it is quite steep in places. There will be no kit drop at the start, please arrive ready to run.

Walk from finish to download is about 3k – allow 30 minutes. The return path is a well-made gravel forest road and gently undulating down hill with an elevation loss of 50m. The remote finish has been selected to make the best use of some fantastic terrain, not used for many years.

Price To enter NICS, the price is as follows:

Race Prices Member* Non-Member
Senior (aged 21 or over) 10 12
Junior or Student 5 6
Maximum charge for a family** 25 30

Sociable group / family fee where all are going round a course together – entry fee is per required number of maps i.e. one entry = one map.

*Member of BOF Clubs only. Get Annual Membership today and experience the membership benefits including the member rate!

There is no fee to hire an SI card if required, but lost cards are charged at £30.

Terrain Summary This is a great area for orienteering over varied terrain, open hill and thick forest.

It is fairly high up, so on a good day you will enjoy great views of the southern Mournes, down over Carlingford Lough and across to the Cooley Peninsula; but on a bad day you could see nothing.

Map, and Control Descriptions

  • First mapped 2016, with minor updates in 2019 and Spring 2024. The 2019 map is available on Routegadget.
  • Control descriptions will be printed on the map. Loose control descriptions will be available at the Start. TD1-3 courses will be both pictorial and textual.

Terrain Notes

  • The map features and excellent mix of fast open mountain terrain, slower and extremely complex and very well mapped tussocky open (filled with prominent trees, boulders and small cliffs), and highly technical white / mid green forest.
  • The 2024 map updates are primarily the addition of some new paths and the more significant areas of windblow that affect route choice. Small areas of windblow that are easily avoided may not be mapped.
  • The slower tussocky open ground is shown as 403 (rough open) with a screen of 407 (slow running vegetation). This can be very rough and uneven.  In many areas the forest 406 (slow running forest) and even 408 (walk forest) may be quicker.
  • Some forest ‘clearings’ are filled with impassable windblow – these are mapped using 410 (vegetation fight)
  • There are many 1000’s of small ditches and seasonal watercourses in the green forest areas – the majority of these are not mapped. Only the most significant are mapped.  You have been warned!
  • Many cliffs and boulders in the forest are well encrusted with a deep layer of moss / lichen and may not be immediately identifiable as a rock feature.
Previous Maps/Routegadget This area was last used for a NICS event on 30 October 2021. Routegadget map and courses can be found here:
Course Notes ⚪ White – 1.4km + 80m climb, 10 controls – navigate along paths with few route choice decisions. Aimed at primary school aged newcomers.
🟡 Yellow – 1.5km + 90m climb, 8 controls – along paths with more route choice decisions. Appropriate for newcomers and younger juniors with some experience.
🟠 Orange – 1.8km + 120m climb, 12 controls – skills needed to navigate away from paths and more route choice decisions, some compass skills are expected. Aimed at novice adults and improving juniors.
🟢 Light Green – 3.7km + 60m climb, 12 controls – this course requires confident map reading and compass skills.
🟢 Short Green – 3.4km + 40m climb, 14 controls – this course is set at the highest technical difficulty but shorter to attract those who may struggle with a longer physical course.
🟢 Green – 4.4km + 50m climb, 17 controls – technically and reasonably physically demanding course.
🔵 Blue – 6.2km + 60m climb, 20 controls – technically and physically demanding course.
🟤 Brown – 8.9km + 170m climb, 30 controls – technical and very physically demanding course.NOTE: This event is also doubling up as the LVO Club Champs, so if you wish to be deemed competitive within the Championships you must pick the correct colour relating to your age/gender. Participants who chose to ‘run up’ a course will be deemed competitive in higher age categories. Participants can also choose to ‘run down’ and although they will not be deemed competitive for the Champs, their result will still be counted in the NICS and BOF ranking.

Brown Open (M18,20,21,35) W21, W35
Blue M40, M45, M50, M55, M60 W18. W20, W40, W45
Green M16, M65 W50, W55
Short Green M70, M75+ W16, W60, W65, W70
Light Green M14 W14, W75+
Orange M12 W12
Yellow M10 W10

White/Yellow/Orange: note there are some steep sections of path on these courses.  The courses also cross an MTB track.  The MTBs will be going slowly up-hill, but please take care and note that the MTB tracks are out  of bounds. A 1:7500 scale map will be used on these three courses.

A 1:10000 scale map will be used for these courses.

Despite much of the terrain being relatively slow, the courses (other than brown) have minimal climb and an overall height loss of around 150m which should offset the slow sections somewhat.

All TD4-5 courses cross an MTB track. This is a downhill section and is marked out of bounds on the map – please do not run directly along the gravel ‘single track’ and cross with care.  If running alongside as a navigation aid, please keep a good lookout an stay well to one side.

First Aid and Safety There will be a first aid and a qualified first aider available at registration. Registration is also a safe place for lost children to wait.

Please do not come to the event if you are unwell.

Please bring and carry any medication you might need, especially inhalers and EpiPen’s.

If you come across an injured or ill person, please stop, help and get further help. There will likely be qualified first aiders on the course who can stop to provide support.

All participants must return to download, whether they complete the course or not. This is to account for all competitors, ensuring everyone’s safe return.

Course Closure:

White, Yellow and Orange courses close at 3pm. All other courses close at 3.30pm. Controls will start to be be collected at the course closing times. If you are still out on the course at this time return to finish and download immediately.

Kit requirements Full body cover is mandatory.

A whistle (emergency alert is 6 loud blasts per minute) is mandatory.

A waterproof jacket may also be mandatory if the organisers decide the weather requires one, so bring one along just in case.

Parking The Upper ‘Cloughmore’ car park should be used (GR J195 174). W3W ///gladiators.charging.influence.  This is where the Mobile Orienteering Office (MOO) will be situated for information/download.

If you find yourselves sitting in a carpark with a playground / Synge and Byrne café / Cloughmore Centre, YOU ARE IN THE WRONG CARPARK! You need to keep driving up the hill through the forest, following the one-way signs for ‘Forest Drive’ to get to the very top carpark:

Parking is charged at £5 per vehicle, unless you have an annual NMDCC permit.

Toilets Public toilet facilities are available at the bottom car park.


Slieve Martin
Kilbroney Park

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To volunteer at this event please email You can find information on each role here as well as the current list of volunteers.

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