5 Days in the Czech Republic

Perhaps a misleading title as we were away for 38 days in total- but 5 were orienteering in Novy Bor. All this the result of searching the web for foreign O after being disappointed to find that most events had moved to early July before the school holidays start.

We borrowed O maps from the Denmark's who had been to a similar area and thought that this part of the holiday was well planned. Hmmm.

The event centre and camp were great- swimming lake with slides, bar, café etc. the facilities were basic and had been planned for hot weather- outside washing up, outdoor cold showers in big tents. If swimming counts as washing then the boys washed. Each evening there was entertainment and prize giving in the sports centre next door – break dancing, belly dancing and more.

We were bused to the assembly each day and although there was no Wilfs we had a daily intake of sausage and bee at unbelievably cheap prices. The areas were great with lots of complex sandstone towers and rocks as well as more ‘normal’ bits of forest. Bob and I struggled but gradually improved. The boys had no such problems and although we thought their courses looked tougher than the M10 or M12 ones in UK they said it was fine. Chris was second on each of the first four days, ran well in the chasing start on day 5 and won overall. A podium finish and a very proud little boy. Matt was pretty consistent , also made the chasing start and was seventh overall. Yet again mum and dad shown up by the children! We did enter fully into the spirit though and organized two British teams for the beer relay where we struggled against the M21 competition but had a great time.

Having made a Swedish friend the boys are now desperate to go to the O Ringen next summer.

The rest of the holiday? Great. Wonderful mountain walks along the Czech- Polish and Slovakian- Polish borders. Lots of areas we can recommend, especially outside the well known High Tatra.

The Czech 5 day / Bohemia is every 2 years with an event at Jicin on even more complex sandstone towers on the intervening years. We will certainly go back.

Karen Nash

Last Updated : 24.09.05