IOF Mapping Specifications

IOF mapping specifications for each discipline of orienteering are as follows:

  • Foot: International Specification for Orienteering Maps (ISOM)
  • Sprint: International Specification for Sprint Orienteering Maps (ISSOM)
  • Mountain Bike: International Specification for Mountain Bike Orienteering Maps (ISMTBOM)
  • Ski: International Specification for Ski Orienteering Maps (ISSkiOM)

ISOM 2000 is currently under revision. An initial submission by Orienteering Australia was presented in 2008.

The mapping specifications provide a standard symbol set for worldwide use.

Off-set, spot colour printing is recommended for all IOF events ie World Ranking Events. Other printing methods may be approved subject to guidelines.

A ‘Checklist for Controlling the Map Making of Major IOF Events’ is available here. The checklist is recommended for use by controllers of Australian events, particularly for Level A Events.

Orienteering Australia Rules, Policies and Guidelines

The Competition Rules for Orienteering Australia Foot Orienteering Events contains rules for maps at Section 15 which include:

  • Maps and course printing to be drawn to IOF mapping specifications
  • For Group A events (Aust Champs – Long, Middle, Sprint & Relay, Aust 3 Days and National Orienteering League Events), map deviations need approval of the OA Mapping Chairperson. Other events need approval of the relevant state mapping officer.
  • The map scale for the Australian Long Distance Championship race should be 1:15000. If the map is ‘particularly detailed’, a scale of 1:10000 is recommended for classes M/W-16 years and M/W 40+ years.
  • For M/W Elite junior & senior and M/W 17-39A age classes a scale of 1:10000 requires approval of the OA Director, Technical.

OA symbol information sheets:

The  OA Operational Manual contains the following mapping policies and guidelines:

  • 2.9 Mapping of Rock Features (April 2014).
  • 2.10 Digital Printing Policy (August 2008)

Information for controllers:

2015 Mapping- Notes for Controllers Workshop

Mapping Deviations

A map with deviations from the mapping specifications may lead to unfair competition.

Under OA Competition Rules it is the responsibility of the Controller ‘to check that the map conforms with the IOF standards’.

In Australia some map deviations have included:

  • non standard symbols used for horse jumps – use the fence symbol
  • sprint map scale of 1:3000 – must be 1:4000 or 1:5000
  • vegetation area symbols too small – leave off the map or redraw with respect to minimum dimensions as specified
  • man made feature not defined – the definition of the symbol must be given in the map legend ie pole
  • ISOM fence symbols used on a sprint map – sprint maps only have two fence symbols: Passable and Impassable
  • North lines not at the correct spacing on a 1:10000 scale map – often results when a 1:15000 scale map is printed at 1:10000; lines should lie between 20 mm and 40 mm on the map
  • map scale of 1:10000 using 1:15000 size symbols for some point features – a 1:10000 scale map is a strict enlargement of a 1:15000 scale map.
  • undefined brown dot screen used presumeably for Broken ground – if the symbol represented Broken ground then the dots should form a random pattern
  • two symbol sizes (brown cross) used for Termite mounds with the smaller symbol being undersize – only one brown cross size is permitted as specified
  • length of dash line too short for Ruined fence – use dash length as specified
  • Less distinct small path symbol drawn at a wider width than specified – draw at specified width
  • Undergrowth screen drawn at the wrong line spacing – draw to specification