Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet
National Orienteering Races Set For March 27-29 at Morehead, Olive Hill
OLIVE HILL, Ky. – Two Kentucky Trail Towns, Olive Hill and Morehead, will be the site for the Flying Pig XIX, an orienteering event expected to attract hundreds of competitors from around the country and several foreign countries the weekend of March 27-29.
The Flying Pig, hosted by Orienteering Cincinnati, includes the U. S. Individual Orienteering Championships as well as recreational competitions for newcomers to orienteering. This event is sanctioned by Orienteering USA, the national federation of the sport.
Orienteering is a wilderness navigation sport where competitors use a map and compass to complete a course. The winner is the person who completes the course in the shortest amount of time without making a mistake.
The campus of Morehead State University will be the site of the first race, the U.S. Sprint Championships, on Friday, March 27. Carter Caves State Resort Park near Olive Hill will be the site of the remaining two races, the U.S. Long Championships on Saturday, March 28, and the U.S. Middle Championships on Sunday, March 29.
The Carter Caves events will feature cliffs, steep hillsides and rocky terrain.
“It’s very challenging navigation,” said Mike Minium, the event director. The highly-detailed orienteering maps of Carter Caves were created by Vladimir Zherdev, a renowned Russian mapmaker.
Orienteering USA has a partnership with the Kentucky Sports Authority and has worked to set up orienteering courses at five Kentucky State Parks sites. (Barren River Lake, Rough River Dam, E.P. “Tom” Sawyer, Taylorsville Lake and Big Bone Lick State Historic Site). A Flying Pig event was held at Big Bone Lick in Boone County in 2012.
As of late February, 160 participants from 27 states, the District of Columbia and four other countries had registered for the event. More participants are expected.
The Kentucky Trail Town program was established by the Office of Adventure Tourism to promote communities along long distance trails or near an extensive trail system or waterway. Morehead, Olive Hill, Livingston and Dawson Springs have been designated as official Trails Towns.
For more information about the Flying Pig XIX, visit www.orienteeringusa.org