Needle Rock Recreation Site

Sat, Dec 14: 2-Hour/4-Hour Score-O
Sat, Dec 14: Navigation Practice

[image:O flag] Pre-Register (Deadline: Thursday, December 12 at 11:59 PM)
[image:O flag] Needle Rock Directions
[image:O flag] Google Map Placemark
[image:O flag] Safety Plan

Time Event Location
Needle Rock (North of Fountain Hills, AZ)
Saturday, 8:00 AM Check-in/Registration Needle Rock Recreation Area
Saturday, 8:30 AM First Time to Start 4-Hour Score-O Needle Rock
Saturday, 9:00 AM Last Time to Start 4-Hour Score-O Needle Rock
Saturday, 11:00 AM Last Time to Start 2-Hour Score-O Needle Rock
Saturday, 12:00 PM Meet for Navigation Practice/Bag Retrieval Needle Rock
Saturday, 1:00 PM Score-O Course Closes Needle Rock



  • 2-hour Score-O
  • 4-hour Score-O
  • Navigation Practice/Bag Retrieval (Free. We provide a GPS to help with navigation, just in case you get turned around and need help.)

Please join us as we offer another day of orienteering fun at our Needle Rock event site north of Fountain Hills. On Saturday, December 14, we'll present a Score-O with two options. For those looking for a limited amount of navigation, we're offering our usual 2-hour Score-O. Those looking for a more adventurous day can stay out for 4-hours. Both events use the same map.

In addition to our Score-O events, we're also offering something new. If you would like some navigation practice with less time pressure, we're offering free navigation practice on the same course. For the navigation practice, we'll provide you with a GPS unit pre-filled with waypoints for the course. We'll send you out to help us pick up bags that mark the Score-O destinations. The difference from our normal events is you won't be on the clock. Also, if you get a little turned around, you can use the GPS unit to relocate.

The terrain at Needle Rock is rugged in spots. Steep cliffs appear in several places on the map. The vegetation is also thick in places. Most of the desert is runnable, but there are areas with a high concentration of prickly plants through which to navigate. On almost all parts of the map, terrain visibility is excellent. Water is available at the timer's table. We advise participants to bring their own water.

Note: A Tonto Day Pass is required for the Needle Rock event
Visitors to Needle Rock are required to have a Tonto recreation pass to park in the Needle Rock parking areas. The pass is not for sale on-site so you'll need to pick one up on your way to the event. Information about the day-use pass is available here. A list of vendors that sell the pass is available here. If you forget to purchase a pass at one of the listed vendors, there is a kiosk that sells the Tonto Pass on Needle Rock Road approximately 400 meters north of the intersection with Rio Verde Drive.

Pre-Registration and Fees

In order to promote pre-registration for our events, the Club has a graded pricing structure. Participants who pre-register for the event will benefit from our priority pricing. While on-site registration is still available, pricing for on-site registration is more expensive. We'll print some extra maps for each of our events, but we cannot guarantee a map for those who do not pre-register.

Pre-Registration is open until Thursday, December 12 at 11:59 PM. After the pre-registration closes, you can still try your luck and register on-site. We will have pre-printed maps for everyone who pre-registers. We cannot guarantee a map for those who register on-site.

Click [image:O flag] here to pre-register.

Click here to see our fee table.

  • Informal Navigation Practice: Free
  • 2-Hour Score-O - Standard club fees apply.
  • 4-Hour Score-O - Add $5/$10 for individual/team over the standard club fees.

Parental Consent:

Parental Consent Now Required (Click here for more information)

All participants under age 18 are now required to have a signed parental consent form on file with the club. You can complete the form before the event and either scan it and send it to us by e-mail or bring it with you to the event.


When: Saturday, December 14, 2019, 8:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Where: [image:O flag] Needle Rock .

2-hour/4-hour Score-O
People of all skill levels are encouraged to participate. You may start the 2-hour Score-O anytime after the course opens at 8:30 am until 11:00 am. To get the full 2 hours on the course, you must start no later than 11:00 pm. Start times for the 4-hour Score-O are limited. For the 4-hour Score-O, you can start between 8:30 am and 9:00 am. Everyone, competitors and recreational participants alike, must be off the course and checked into the timer's table by 1:00 pm when the course closes. The penalty for returning past the 2-hour/4-hour time limit is 10 points per minute.

Navigation Practice/Control Retrieval
If you'd like some additional navigation practice, you can join us at 12:00 pm to help us collect our destination markers. Particpants in the navigation practice are given the same map as used for the Score-O events. We also provide a GPS unit with pre-loaded waypoints that mark the location of the destination markers. Participants are each given a unique route to hike. You do your best to navigate the route with only the map and compass. If you get turned around at any point, you're welcome to use the GPS unit to relocate. At each destination point, you will collect the bag marking the spot. You will return to the start/finish site with all the bags you collect.

We offer the navigation practice for free. Participants are saving us a lot of time having to pick up the destination markers ourselves. In return for some free navigation practice, we are asking you to help us retrieve our control bags.

Please note that the navigation practice is not open to beginners. We expect participants to navigate to their assigned destinations, either by map and compass or by GPS.


8:00 AM Check-in/Registration Opens
8:30 AM Score-O course opens
9:00 AM Last time to start the 4-hour Score-O.
11:00 PM Last time to start the 2-hour Score-O.
12:00 PM Briefing for navigation practice participants.
1:00 PM Score-O course closes
All participants must be off the course by this time.

What to Bring:

Whistle Mandatory for all.
Available for purchase for $1.00.
Compass Available for rent for $1.00.
Water bottles. There will be some water on the course. However, you are strongly encouraged to bring your own water bottles or a camelback.
Sunscreen There will be little or no shade on the course.
Sturdy hiking shoes and long pants Recommended. You may encounter cactus, cat claw, and loose terrain.


[image:O flag] Needle Rock Directions
[image:O flag] Google Map Placemark


Note: Due to the length of the course, add $5/$10 to standard club fees for individual/team for the 4-hour Score-O.