22.07.2021 - Strong as a bear

Strong as a bear for big and small

When the first orienteering participants enjoyed this sunny, early morning in front of their tents or their caravan on the campground close to the sewage plant, nobody thought that shaggy brown bears were roaming around here on the upper reaches of the Plessur for centuries. Although two field names still remind of this time on the national map and even pass on the natural names of these animals. It is possible that the paths of these omnivores crossed at the “Bärenried” in search of food. And the “bear bath” over the “Müliboden” served as the obviously necessary fur hygiene place in the wooded area.

The fourth stage of the SOW 2021 offered whole different perspectives. Up on the Brüggerhorn, almost 1000 meters higher than the camping, the wide panorama of the Arosa mountain world opened up. One almost forgot that shortly after the start the terrain with its steep mountain slopes and areas of bushes required concentrated orienteering technique if the goal of reaching the finish close to the Weisshorn middle station was going to be crossed in a personally satisfactory time. It should be as appropriate as possible to one’s own category, the individual goals or even for a competitive comparison with their rivals.

At the kid’s orienteering courses, the youngest tried no less ambitious to find their controls on courses they could choose themselves. The helpers who had prepared lavishly built courses with the material needed for this, could almost with no exception make the kids’ eyes sparkle. Quite a few kids hesitated to do the given tasks, but soon punched routinely as grown-ups do or were happy when they discovered the hidden teddy bear after a successful somersault. This might be the motivating experience later on when they decide to do orienteering as their sport. Who knows, a few of them might attract the coaches’ attention in the youth or junior teams and even later shine as a world elite athlete?

Where did the kids-O take place? Of course, in the bear sanctuary Arosa which probably also served as namesake for the “strong as a bear” stage. But a toddler did not seem to care. He declared openly and feely that he just followed the string and would have undoubtably won but had unfortunately forgotten to punch.

This proves that nobody should deny that orienteering is not un unmistakable mirror to everyday live!

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