FUMA: Pleasant Grove

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February 24

This event has been rescheduled to Saturday, February 24.

This is not a QOC event, but it is an event put on by our friends at the Fork Union Military Academy (FUMA), near Fork Union, VA. They have hosted a top-notch meet the last several years and this promises to be another one!

All proceeds from the meet will help fund the FUMA orienteering team's effort to compete in the US Junior Nationals in Massachusetts. Last year’s event helped them get to Texas, where their JV team placed 2nd in the nation. Their hope is to improve that result this year. Your entry fee to this meet will help defray the travel costs for team members.

STARTS: 10:00am - 1:00pm Everyone must return by 3:00pm. (All competitors must check in at the finish. If you don't, they'll assume you are lost and send out search parties!)

LOCATION: Pleasant Grove Park, just off of Thomas Jefferson Pkwy (VA 53), Palmyra, VA. From US 15, head west on VA 53. In about 1.8 miles, turn right on Pleasant Grove Drive toward the museum.

START/ FINISH: At the pole barn, just beyond the Pleasant Grove House Museum.

COST: $5 per map.


  • As always, instruction will be available for beginners.
  • Bring your own compass, or borrow one of theirs (on a first-come basis). Be prepared to leave car keys or an ID as a deposit when borrowing.
  • Dress appropriately for the weather and for travel both on & off trail.
  • Point of contact: Carl Muench (muenchc at fuma dot org);
  • If you plan to attend, you are encouraged to email Carl so he can get as accurate a count as possible for map printing. Include your likely course choice in your email.
  • All courses will be traditional orienteering courses which are to be completed in the numerical order indicated on the map.
  • E-punching is not available; pin punches will be used.
The Courses: There will be courses of different difficulties and lengths available & there will be something for everyone! Details of courses will be posted closer to the meet if we are told them. Be sure to check back!

The map has been further updated since the last meet in this park and has improved contours and other details. White and yellow will use a 1:7500 scale. Other maps will be 1:10,000. Contour interval will be 3m.

Courses will be:
- White (beginner) - appx. 1.6 km
- Yellow (novice) - appx. 3.0 km
- Orange (intermediate) - appx. 6 km
- Green (advanced) - appx. 6.2 km
- Red (long advanced) - appx. 7.3 km


Pleasant Grove Park, , Palmyra, VA (Classic)

RegistrationNo advance registration required. Just show up and have fun!
Start TimesYou may start your course at any time during the start window listed below for your event.
ScheduleSaturday, February 24
10:00 am - 3:00 pmClassic:
Event Director:Carl Muench
Location Details

Pleasant Grove Park

Palmyra, VA
Google Map

From US 15, head west on VA 53 (Thomas Jefferson Hwy). In ~1.8 miles, turn right on Pleasant Grove Drive toward the museum.
Course NotesClassic

Additional notes directly from FUMA:
We are looking forward to hosting the annual FUMA Invitational Orienteering Meet.
For those who were here a year and a half ago, I think you will enjoy an improved map. A LIDAR base map has improved the detail in the contour lines tremendously. We also continue to add detail so there will be objects on the map that were not there previously. Much more time has been spent in the northern portion of the map, but that is where the lion’s share of the courses run.
Another improvement to the competition area is the kill of undergrowth provided by the hard cold we have had. Those who competed a year and a half ago will remember a lot of undergrowth limiting speed. Undergrowth is still present, but much has been made brittle or has been beaten down by the severe cold weather. Regardless, the map offers a variety of beautiful, open hard wood forest that is very fast, scrappy pine and cedar forest, and advanced courses will even encounter holly thickets. In addition, there is some open field running, a rich trail network, and the classic Virginia spur/reentrant terrain. We think the runners will enjoy the variety of vegetation and the challenges they present.
That being said, we are not professional mappers. This map is a work in progress. We update it as time is available. So you should not expect to see a map that you would run on in a National Event put on by OUSA. Here are a few things to watch out for:
Vegetation—Green blobs. Vegetation is not mapped with great accuracy, and shades of green should not be used as a handrail. If you see green on the map, the vegetation is there. If you do not see green, it does not mean it is not there.
Boulders—in general, boulders are mapped if they are over 0.5 m tall. However, in areas where boulders are few, you may see a smaller one mapped if it is distinct to a runner.
Rootstocks—the same general rule applies to rootstocks as to boulders.
Changes occur rapidly in this park where the director is aggressively making it into a park that serves a variety of needs through a variety of recreational activities. A year and a half ago, there was clearing work done the week before the meet. In November we found the first nine holes of a disk golf course with work commencing on the back nine. All that to provide a warning that there may be recent changes which we have not spotted.

Scales: White, Yellow, and Orange will use a 1:7500 map scale. Green and Red will use a 1:10,000 map scale. Both maps will use a 3 m contour interval.

Safety Notes
Safety Bearing: The park is very contained. If you get confused you can go one of two ways. The best way is to west or southwest. That will get you to Virginia Route 53, on which you can travel to get back to the meet site. Another option, though longer is to go east. That will get you to the Rivanna River which you can follow down stream (southeast) to the town of Palmyra.
Junk piles and barbed wire: This land used to be farmland. As a result, there is a lot of old barbed wire in the forest. We have tried to mark it with pink or orange surveyor’s tape, but I am sure we missed some. There are also many ditches that were used as dumps where people tossed jars and metal objects. Be wary and be careful.
Horses: Some of the trails are designated as bridle paths, and nice days will bring out many horses and their riders. We do not want to spook and horses, so please give them a wide berth and make no abrupt movements or loud noises around them.
Courses (note that lengths are not yet official) Course/climb: White 2.0 km/70, Yellow 3.0 km/80m, Orange 4.0 km/130, Green 6.0 km/170m, Red 7.3 km/190m

For those who want to enjoy some local history in addition to the orienteering, the meet site is within 25 minutes of Monticello, home of Thomas Jefferson, and Ash Lawn, home of James Monroe, the forgotten fifth president. Fifty minutes to the north is Montpelier, the home of James Madison, yet another member of the Virginia Dynasty.
Close to Monticello is Michie Tavern for a taste of 18th century fare. I personally like the Barbecue Exchange in Gordonsville, VA, about ½ hour north of the meet. Zion’s Crossroads at the intersection of US 15 and I- 64 features the typical array of American fastfood.

Entry FeesThis is a FUMA event (not a QOC event); see details above for fees.