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Bonanza 2021, Saturday the 4th of September in Örebro 2021-06-22 17:46:33

We all know the third time's the charm, so here we go!


Despite many restrictions regarding Covid, the organizers feel quite confident that they can finally go through with Bonanza 2021 and thus get the chance to show off the beautiful city of Örebro.

On Saturday the 4th of September two open events will takes place in Örebro. Every turfer who participates will be awarded the Bonanza medal. First a Foot event, 10 am to noon, followed by the Bike Event, 1.30 pm to 3.30 pm. In the evening a Banquet will take place, starting at 6 pm. If the Covid-restrictions for 4 people/table is still in effect come September, only about 100 people can attend.

Read more about the event, how to register and all things Bonanza HERE (Swedish) and HERE FOR ENGLISH.

And register for this fun World Cup event HERE.


TurfCrew wants to make it clear that it is not Föreningen Turf Örebro that is the organizer of Bonanza 2021. It is the newly formed association Örebro Turfers who are responsible for the event.

If you have any questions, look up Bonanzan Örebro 2021 on Facebook or contact orebroturfers@gmail.com.


BONANZA 2021 2021-02-07 19:21:16

Turf Crew is pleased to announce that the newly formed association Örebro Turfers (not to be confused with Örebro Turfförening) will host the unofficial world championship in Turf - Turf Bonanza 2021. The event will be held on September 4, in Örebro Sweden. Save the date and book travel/accommodation already now. More information about this long awaited event will be released in springtime. Welcome to Örebro!

Örebro Turfers in cooperation with Turf Crew


TURF INSIDER July 2021-07-13 12:46:20
Round winners

Congratulations to the winners of round 132: Welshman from Lounais-Suomi biked home his fourth Gold, Aicar from Åland secured his first Silver féarglas from Scotland added a bronze to her collection. Well done mates!


Bonanza 2021 - arranged by The association Örebro Turfers

TurfCrew wants to make it clear that it is not Föreningen Turf Örebro that is the organizer of Bonanza 2021. It is the newly formed association Örebro Turfers who are responsible for the event. The e-mail adress for Örebro Turfers is orebroturfers@gmail.com

On Saturday the 4th of September two open events will takes place in Örebro. Every turfer who participates will be awarded the Bonanza medal. First a Foot event, 10 am to noon, followed by the Bike Event, 1.30 pm to 3.30 pm. In the evening a Banquet will take place, starting at 6 pm. If the Covid-restrictions for 4 people/table is still in effect come September, only about 100 people can attend.


Read more about the event, how to register and all things Bonanza HERE (Swedish) and HERE FOR ENGLISH.

And register for this fun World Cup event HERE.


Canoe Turf 2021

Kalmar Turf Association invites everyone to a Canoe Turf Event on the 14th of August. Invitation HERE (only in Swedish).

Last time Kalmar held a Canoe Event, it was highly appreciated. So if you have a few days to spare and an interest in a slightly different Turf Event, head towards Kalmar, a very flat and friendly Turf city in Sweden :)


And here I surrender the 'pen' to my summer guest writers, I hope you enjoy "The Chronicles of Turf – Scotland Edition".


TURF INSIDER JULY – guest edited by Turf Team Scotland

Hi Turfers, it’s a longer issue of Insider than usual because our guest editors and contributors this month are the enthusiastic bunch in Scotland. Hopefully their stories and experiences will spur everyone on to engage with turfing over the summer months.


A Drive for Uniques, and only Uniques: FeTaTo interviewed by féarglas


Uniques Only?! Where did it all begin? What gave you the idea?

It started in April when I challenged myself to visit all 381 zones within Stirling Council area. The potential sticking point was Ben Lui (a Munro) - would the path be clear of snow? The warm weather made it so, and I completed my challenge before the end of the round. With travel restrictions lifted, I decided to go for the Unique-1000 medal. A visit to Livingston yielded over 100 unique zones – and the medal. 


In May, having previously achieved 800 round uniques during the challenge in March, I set out with two goals - the Diversiest medal, and to only visit unique zones. A trip to Aberdeen, where I found myself close to the Greed-350 medal, and a ‘Cambla’ effect of trying to take zones faster than Cambla was taking them from me, meant that I well overshot my target, gaining both Diversiest and Greed-350 medals. Unable to visit my new grandchild in USA in June, I decided to keep going with a focus on uniques. Having been saturated with Dunblane/Stirling zones during the March challenge, and as someone who normally travels, I enjoyed the thought of exploring again even if it was Scotland and not the World. The new target was 50% of Scottish Uniques (4621 zones), but maybe Unique-5000 would be possible as well? I travelled North, South, East and West, and so it was on 2021-07-01 at 14.39, I achieved the Unique-5000 medal, the first and currently the only person to hold it in the UK.


Did you ever break the ‘unique only’ rule?

Initially, I broke it only for three reasons. The first was for Greed-350, where time was of the essence with Cambla turfing in the same area. The second was for the Eager Ferret medal, for which I returned to Loanhead. I wasn’t expecting to get it on my first attempt, and especially not when I found myself cycling through a flood up to 20 cm deep under the Loanhead bridge. The third was if I was near Edinburgh Park, where I liked to clear zones for Artful. I became less strict in June, but wouldn’t go out of my way for a non-unique.


What were the challenges of a ‘uniques only’ goal?

Uniques place offer different challenges, especially for someone who usually sets off with only a vague plan for the day’s activity. I started using more tools such as a topographical map, Naviki, and Maps.Me These helped me plan a little more and I used them for navigation on the day. I also noticed that around the 5-hour mark, my ability to navigate and my sense of direction decreased significantly and I would have to backtrack more often.


What did you learn about Turf and Scotland?

Sometimes you have to ‘dive in’ and wander to find a zone. Using my eyes instead of a map can often yield better results. The paths in the wood south of Forres made for interesting navigation as the mountain bike paths are not generally mapped. In Livingston, I gave up on map reading and just set off in roughly the correct direction and found paths. I have gotten to know better where the zone maker might have put zones. I have developed a much greater feel for town planning, how much this differs between areas and how it affects the access round the zones. And there is a lot of construction work going on!


What did you enjoy the most?

I loved not knowing what the day and the area would throw at me. Each day was its own experience.


Any unusual zones or surprise zones?

I never knew there was a Lourdes at Carfin. The Carfin Lourdes Grotto opened in 1922 and welcomes over 70,000 pilgrims each year from across the globe. There was a service in the zone at the time of my visit, and I had to persevere outside the wall until gps wobble gave it to me.


What’s next?

The UK Explorer medal. While only one zone is necessary, I am planning on taking at least 100 zones (where possible!) in each of the 12 regions in the UK. Of course, Scotland has already been achieved!


Thank you FeTaTo - and good luck with the UK Explorer ?


A Game for All Ages

One of the great things about Turf is that we all tackle it differently depending on our age, ability and preferred mode of transport. There are several generations of the same family playing and there are outstanding feats from some younger players. We have two reports about the activities of younger people this month – Cialar’s Staminatrix Medal in Stockholm and The Pentland Scouts Turf Event:


Staminatrix Medal for 12 year old Turfer in Stockholm

1) How long have you been turfing and how did you start?
I started Turf in February 2019. I started Turf because I was skiing with my family in Dalarna together with my grandparents who turf. My grandfather wanted me to take all the top zones for him. I did that once and then I started my own account and took the zones from him.


2) I hear it was your birthday and you changed your turf nick. How old were you and was their birthday cake?!
I changed my turf nick to Birthdaygirl! I turned 12 that day, April 17th. I did not get a real birthday cake but I got cupcakes when I took a break before the last 50 zones.


3) What was the plan to complete the 400 zones?

My plan was to take at least 150 zones the day before the event and then the rest during it. I did not think that I would be able to take them all at the same time. I only slept 5 hours that night. I started at 16.00 on Friday and took the last zone 15.51 the next day. But I made it!


4) Did you enjoy doing the Staminatrix?

I liked doing it but the last lap was very hard. I fell off my bike and hurt my knee and a rib.


5) Was it harder than you expected? Or easier? Or just as you expected?

It was as I expected but it took longer than I first thought.


6) Was it tiring doing all that cycling?

Yes, I was very tired from cycling and also tired of cycling so much. It was a week before I got up on my bike again.


7) Is it one of your proudest medals you have got? (And if not, which one is)

I am very proud of this medal but I am almost more proud of my El Staminatore because I took it by myself. Staminatrix was an event with a lot of people so this made it easier.


8) What was your favourite moment? And the funniest moment?

My favourite moment was when the medal turned up on my phone. I took about 100 screenshots. The funniest that day was probably when we tried to take a zone but there was a wedding ceremony in the zone. We were a bit angry that they did not turf.


Scotland’s Biggest Scout Turf Event

The largest Scout event (so far) took place with Pentland Scouts near Edinburgh. On Sunday 20th June, 80 scouts and 25 adults took part in this closed event. The scouts participated in 25 small patrols/teams. They enjoyed two hours of challenging turfing. A corona safe event – well distanced and outdoors! The competition included not only turf, but also a selfie competition.


Pictures on Facebook HERE and HERE(all pictures with the permission of the individuals and guardians)

Learn more about the competition at the link https://linktr.ee/brassmonkeyevent


Step by step, interest in Turf is expanding and becoming a part of the scout programme in Scotland. Groups can join in and create their own event for local scouts. Send an email to scoutevent@turfgame.com and ask for more details.

A special thanks to Chris Welch and his team for making this event possible.



Turfing Together, Scotland’s first adult turf event: Contributed by VikingB and others


With Turf gaining such momentum in Scotland, it felt like the next step was to hold an event, and on 7th June we held our first open Turf Event in Edinburgh. To try the format, and with the easing of COVID restrictions providing a chance to meet fellow turfers, three of us volunteered and set out to organise. I covered the zone set-up, Hodge on communications, drumming up participation and Kenny as our organiser in chief – or fall guy, should anything go wrong.


After receiving a log in for the event platform, I was ready and excited to start. It is a simple tool to use, even if the date field was a bit wonky, who starts with the year? Our first big snag hit us when we were told about an event embargo in certain parts of the city due to Sprint Championships in 2024. We had to plan zones outside of these areas, and the best bits had already been reserved. We decided on a strip of northeast Edinburgh, from Broughton through to Craigentinny – an area I knew well. I tried to put zones in interesting spots, so people could discover something new, like Bellfield Brewery or the old mill wheel from Bonnington Mill. Where that wasn’t possible, zones were in small lanes, cul-de-sacs and other dead ends. This prevented turfers having to stop in the middle of traffic to get a zone.


Kingslayer kindly looked over the event and gave some great advice about making some of the zones bigger to compensate for any poor GPS signals due to local buildings. We also received advice from others on what could go wrong, and we tried to be ready. Our biggest concern was the timing of the event. Why is it as adults we still get confused with time zones? Would it start on time, when we expected it, especially as we had twenty participants spread across the area? As we counted down to start time, Hodge, Kenny and I stood by checking and ready to do something if it didn’t work, but success and they were off!


Not all the participants were locals. Here is AroonTheToon’s story: “DangerTurfing! I'd like to draw attention to some hazards for any unwary turfers who happen to venture into the Edinburgh area. During an unplanned stop in the capital, I found myself accidentally acquiring a hire bike, enjoying leafy urban cycleways and waterways, and even claiming a zone on a tidal island. I felt compelled to extend my stay and, worst of all, was tracked and traced by the queen of turfers herself (féarglas), and invited to a fun Turf Event that culminated in an entertaining swarm of turfers capturing a crowdy 21 medal. Thank you to Turfmakers and Edinburgh Turfers for embodying the spirit of fraternity and exploration that Turf brings.


N.B. The event was so successful that Artful has organised another one on 22nd July in Livingston


Surf and Turf – Enjoying the Summer Holidays: Contributed by TheLovely and others


Earlier this year Cruachan and I set off for a week’s holiday in the Inner Hebrides on the islands of Coll and Tiree. It was sunny, relaxing and a break away from work but with no zones in either place, it was at times a little pointless! Holiday makers later in the season were more fortunate with Tiree now boasting 8 new zones. More recently I travelled 400 miles to Chester for a few days break. Taking the opportunity to turf in a new area I was astonished to be taking zones from RossEwan, who lives less than 10 miles from me in Scotland. It seems that many of us have been enjoying a break away from home turf…


Many turfers have been exploring areas of Scotland. Tandem should have been collecting some uniques in Copenhagen, but restrictions on international travel meant she ended up in the Scottish Highlands where she combined Munro bagging (a list of Scottish hills over 3,000 feet high) with collecting some very hard earned mountain zones. She says: “Ben Macdui and Cairngorm took all day but the fabulous views were a reward for the effort, and if I’m lucky I might keep them for the whole round.”


Also exploring the highlands and islands were Wintergreen and CSL visiting zones on MonadhCaoin (Mount Keen), BenLomond and BeinnHòb (Ben Hope), which are respectively the easternmost, southernmost and northernmost Munros. That just leaves the most westerly, LadharBheinn, which is quite remote. CSL and Wintergreen also travelled to Islay, the Hebridean island famed for its whiskies. Wintergreen says: “It was pleasantly breezy and midge-free. We took as many turf zones as we could, including a couple by distilleries. However, zones are few and far between, and we found that signal was often a problem, so had to leave some untaken. Islay is a beautiful island, and we enjoyed exploring. We're looking forward to more exploration as we increase our tally of unique zones in the weeks to come.”


SazlDazl comes from a non-touristy town that is lucky enough to 65 zones, so it never occurred to him that a busy place like Keswick would only have three! Especially when he needed points to avoid league relegation at the end of the month. He says: “Luckily I noticed the username of the only other Keswick turfer, ESOCWalter, also on holiday from Scotland. I contacted him to clear the zones to help, and he was ready and willing to assist. My plan was to nip up Cat Bells while the sun shone, then retake, but unfortunately I was distracted by an ice-cream van and missed the 11am zone restart cut-off. Oops!”


In June Jarv’s husband finally achieved his goal of visiting the Knepp rewilding project in West Sussex. For five days a treehouse was their home and whilst her husband was happily ensconced with a pair of binoculars, Jarv was able to get a little turfing in. She told us about her trip: “My first cycling excursion allowed me to take a few isolated countryside zones near Horsham (which I retained for the whole month). I then headed south to explore the bohemian Brighton and Hove and the less bohemian Worthing. Over two days I was able to take nearly all the zones available; lots of seaside and park zones enabled an excellent discovery tour of the area. Alas, the two zones on Brighton Pier were set to elude me as the bodyguard refused my bicycle. However, socks and shoes removed I waded through the waves to take one zone from below. A complete bonus was to find that I was wearing a golden crown! Excitement was short-lived as the resident king or queen soon regained their kingdom. However, it was nice holiday trophy to go with the tan.”


British Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships and Turfing: Contributed by TSFinreir


On the last weekend in June a band of Scottish turfers travelled North to the Moray for the four race British Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships, and of course to take some unique zones on route. MTBO takes place on special large-scale maps showing the rideability of all the paths and tracks with a point-to-point format, visiting the control points in a set numerical order, with no avatar or GPS to aid the navigation.


The weekend highlight was on Friday evening with the British middle distance champs in the glorious terrain of Anagach on the outskirts of Granton-on-Spey. There were opportunities to take a few Turfs in the town and forest too, and the odd crowdy achieved as a bonus! The highly detailed path network in Anagach and the complex moraine and marsh system made for some highly challenging route choice and navigation challenges from the off. Foot orienteers may underestimate the skill required to ride technical singletrack and navigate fluently at the same time, whilst maintaining a flow through speedy SI Air controls by planning ahead. All this at up to three times the speed of foot orienteering. Map Memory and quick assimilation of relevant map detail is key, as is simplification. The rooty, narrow singletrack through the bilberries and ridges put careful navigation and bike handling at a premium. A map flip half way around made the best of the complex terrain areas. Everyone wore wide smiles at the finish as they knew they had taken part in a very special race on a great map.


MTBO is well worth a try to add to the biking and navigation skills needed in Turf. There are Facebook groups for local organisations in Scotland Scottish Mountain Bike Orienteering | Facebook and Sweden MTBO Sverige https://www.facebook.com/groups/357934787713/


Turf Nicks 

We’d like to remind all turfers to be mindful and careful when choosing their turn nick. Names that seem amusing in the moment, might on reflection be distasteful, offensive, or unsuitable especially for younger members. If you think a Turf nick is unsuitable, you can e-mail abust@turfgame.com and you might soon see it changed to something a lot more amusing, the last few changes have been flower-inspired ;)


And a final note from AroonTheToon in Scotland, with a warning about turfing:

On a recent short break in the Stirling area with my non-turfing girlfriend, I thought I had cracked the art of 'blind/secret turfing' by having the app active whilst we toured various sights and cycle routes (hoping to pick up any zones that we 'happened' to pass through). However, it led to strange looks every time I paused due to a strange woman's voice coming from my pocket. :-O


Turfa lugnt!/Safe turfing!


//féarglas//TheLovely//Munin (editor)

...if you want to contribute to future Turf Insiders, send your story to insider@turfgame.com :)


Minor corrections from the new round 2021-06-18 13:53:48

About 20 crowdy medals were incorrectly handed out during the round reset. This is now corrected and users missing their previous crowdy medal may claim it via the issue system.

//Turf Crew

TURF INSIDER June 2021-06-15 15:47:08

Round winners

Congratulations to the winners of round 131: Welshman from Lounais-Suomi biked home his third Gold and set a new round record of 2.191,595 points, féarglas from Scotland added a fourth silver to her collection and Artful from Scotland turfed home his first while happily exploring new places. Well done mates!


Bonanza 2021

If you have not already booked the date, this year's Bonanza will be held in Örebro on Saturday the 4th of September. More information will be available at the end of June, so keep an eye on the home page :)


Midnight Classic for the 8th time in Umeå - 12th - 13th of June

This long-running event goes over two days, and yet is the normal 2 hour length. It starts at 11 pm on Saturday and finish at 1 am on Sunday. It takes advantage of the lovely light summer nights in Northern Sweden. If you don't know what to do this Saturday, head to Umeå :)

https://turfvasterbotten.files.wordpress.com/2021/05/inbjudan-till-midnight-classic-2021-1.pdf


Göteborg Open -3rd of July, also for the 8th time!

Another long-running event is set for the middle of the summer on the west coast of Sweden. Why not plan to spend 2 hours of your vacation this year competing by foot or by bike with other turfers?

https://www.turfgoteborg.se/2021/03/28/gbg-open-2021/


Both events are following the guidelines for a Corona safe get-together and there will, unfortunately, be very limited social time.


Thoughts from a new zone maker

Turf insider interviewed StarDust, one of the first zone makers in the last issue. This time one of our newest zone makers have answered some questions: inda7 is located in Umeå, Västerbotten.

When did you take your first zone?

18th of March 2014.

What part does Turf play in your life?

Turf is always included daily in some way and the activity varies according to the season, so everything between only taking the home zone and to holiday planning.

How did it happen, you becoming a zone maker?

I was asked if it could be something for me and I answered yes.

How was the training?

Very instructive and with a good set-up.

What was the biggest surprise during your 'zone maker training'?

That a small rectangle on a screen can get so much criticism ;)

Are you looking at zones differently today? If yes, in what way?

Yes, I have more of a "here there should have been a zone" in focus.

What is the most important aspect of making a good zone to you?

That the zone is placed in a place that many people want to visit.


All the new zone makers started out by helping out in the UK and Germany and then got a chance at some areas in Sweden. inda7 did very well with placing zones in my home area of Uppsala, two on my daily route to work - she read old posts in the Forum, so no unwarranted nudges from me ;) The zones she made during April in Uppsala are highly appreciated and visited, toting take points of 65, 80 and 95. So I can attest she is living up to her idea of the most important aspect of zone making: placing them in places many turfers visit!


Let's talk about Abuse – the high-lights

Some years ago, Turf Insider had an in-depth piece about abuse in Turf. Sometimes it is good to re-use old texts and remind the community about how not to behave.

Abuse is when turfers take advantage of the game in a negative way and break the few rules that exist. Since Turf Crew are not all-seeing, any turfer that discover a rule violation can write to abuse@turfgame.comDo not blame or question the behaviour of a specific turfer on social media or in other public forums, since it rarely comes with any good, but could be devastating if the accused was not doing anything wrong. Report your suspicion to the abuse-mail. Different actions can be taken by Turf Crew depending on the kind of abuse and in some cases an assessment has to be done with regards to how serious the violation is and if it is a repeat offence.


The most severe rule violation is ”gps spoofing” where the turfer is fooling the game to believe the gps of the phone (and the turfer) is in a specific zone while being somewhere else, usually at home by a computer. This is often done by newbies excited about trying their 'hacking' skills. This kind of abuse always result in the account being shut down/banned.


Unsuitable Turf nicks are changed by Turf Crew when brought to the attention of Turf Crew via the abuse-mail and the turfer is informed by e-mail about why the nick was inappropriate.


Another kind of abuse that can lead to repercussions are foul language in the chats in the Turf app. The first step is usually a short temporary chat-ban (the turfer can still use the app and take zones, but can no longer write in the chats). If a short temporary chat-ban is not enough to deter the turfer from abusing the chat privilegas, a longer chat-ban is put in place, sometimes lasting 'forever'. In really severe cases, the account can be shut down. Turf Crew can also ”clean” the different Turf chats by removing the foul language if it is deemed necessary. Again, Turf Crew is not all-seeing, so if your think your chats are in need of cleaning up, e-mail the abuse-mail.


Personal Turf goals

We can not all aim for the Gold medal in every round. At least I have never been tempted to spend most of my waking hours every day for four or five weeks on my bike. So I set other goals for myself and my every-day turfing. Because it is something I do every day. For me Turf is the best daily-exercize motivator, and I bike to and from work in all kinds of weather. About one hour in the morning and 30 min after work, since I am a morning person and after work I am hungry and want dinner :)


For quite some time I have been working towards 100.000 takes by going for at least 50 takes per day and last round I finally reached this goal, after 7 years, 2 months and 2 days making it an average of 38 takes per day since I started turfing. That does not sound so hard, does it? ;) I am lucky that I have plenty of zones on my way to and from work, and I also have several different routes I can take if the zones are blocked.


Another goal of mine is to take at least 50 unique zones every round, in average over the year. It is much easier to achieve this goal during summer when the weather is nice and you often go on 1-2 day trips to near-by towns. When I started out, one goal was to take a unique zone each session...this became hard already after a few weeks ;)


Staying put in League 5 has for a long time also been a round goal for me. It is becoming harder and harder. One year ago, scoring 25.000 points per week was more than enough to be 'safe' from being demoted to Leage 6. This is no longer the case, in more series in League 5, you will need at least 50.000 points per week to be sort-of safe. You can always be unlucky and end up in a series where everyone turfs like the devil and then it is what it is.


After periods of extended sick leave and inability to Turf, the goals have been lower. That is the beauty of Turf, we can set our own goals accordingly to our life situation and where we live, work and play.


Report issues in English, please!

Since the beginning of this year, we have international zone makers in Turf Crew and since it is the zone makers that attend to the zone issues, please try to write your issue in English, even if it is located in a non-English speaking country. Many of you already do, so keep up the good work!


Did you know...

...that during round 131 a total of 9491 new Turf accounts were created world wide? 4984 of these took at least one zone. The top six countries with newbies were Sweden (4750), The UK (101), Finland (60),  USA (27) and Norway and Denmark (both 16),


Turfa lugnt!/Safe turfing!



//Munin



...if you want to contribute to future Turf Insiders, send your story to insider@turfgame.com :)

TURF INSIDER May 2021-05-10 10:00:56
Round winners

Congratulations to the winners of round 130: Welshman from Lounais-Suomi biked home his second Gold, féarglas from Scotland celebrated Scotland's Region Battle win in March with another Silver medal and Király from Skåne took his fifth Bronze medal. Well done mates!


Voting for Turf Awards 2020 has now ended

In total, we received 966 votes divided on the four categories, Thanks to all 286 turfers who took part in the vote. The result will be announced at the Bonanza in Örebro on September 4. Registration for the Bonanza will open on the 20th of June, more information about how and where to register will follow!


Open Canoe Turf Event in Kalmar - August 14th

Kalmar Turf Association has organized popular canoe Turf events in 2015 and 2017. Now it´s time again. On August 14, an open event will be organized with requirment for registration in advance. We compete in pairs with one phone. Canoes and life jackets are available for rent for a low price. Invitation with registration form is available at www.kalmarturf.se Welcome!


What about those Minnesota turfers?

Some Swedish turfers have recently noticed increased activity in the big country to the west, and zones have also been added to the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St Paul. Here's a short input from woody:

"Turf play was kick started here in late December with the appearance of the BBC article about féarglas . Through the cold, winter months the game slowly grew in both the number of players and zones. Now spring has arrived and we have completed four rounds with four different region winners: danmarstp, hotbike, woody, and magikmama. Other players in contention each round include MtkaHek, fluteswedie and kelih, and it is no surprise that they are also at the top of the region this round. At the beginning of the round magikmama told me her goal was to score 250,000 points. She surpassed that and finished near the top 100 in the world rankings. It has been fun to watch the number of zones grow, learn game play and explore new areas. In the coming months we will work to attract more new Turfers. I also hope to see our first Turf event."

I am sure we will hear and see more of these crazy American turfers in the future! 


The first zone maker?

Zone makers have been around Turf almost as long as the game app itself. Doh, since what would Turf be without the zones? Yeah, I know...however, in the beginning the developers themselves made the zones, and because they were the developers I don't want to call them zone makers as well. Then along came StarDust, possibly the oldest (in Turf years) still active zone maker in Turf Crew today. I thought it would be fun to hear from him, so I mailed him some questions and here are his answers:


So StarDust, you are one of the very first zone makers in Turf. Do you remember the first zone you made? Where is it located?

I don't remember the town, but it was part of a test to see that I understood the ZCT (Zone Creation Tool). Looking at urbangeeks map tool and narrowing down the timeline, I think it might have been Sollefteå. (ed. the ZCT has evolved into the ZE, Zone Editor, today, but both abbreviations are being used). 


How did it happen, you becoming a zone maker? Did you know Drassen or Sim, the developers of Turf?

Back in 2011 when I became a zone maker there weren't many official zone makers. As far as I can remember it was only Drassen and jossan that were making zones back then. I was just an avid turfer and was invited to a Google Talk chat (Google Talk became Hangouts later) where some other active players were chatting about everything. Back then Drassen was quite active in the chat so I just asked him if I could be a zone maker since I saw that there was a big lack of zones pretty much everywhere in Sweden except for Stockholm and perhaps Gothenburg (and interestingly enough also Västerås).

Fun fact, that chat still exists but now in Hangouts with some of the original turfers from the old chat.


Today we have a 'zone maker education' with a test, how were you introduced to zone making? Did the zone making tool look and work the same as today? Has the zone making tool undergone any changes, for better or worse?

When I started I got to build five zones or so that were inspected by Drassen, that was pretty much it. The ZCT was a lot more basic back then, the radius around the zones I remember was my idea, that made it a whole lot easier to make sure the distance between the zones were correct. Back then you put the tp and pph in manually and there was little or no automation in the points changing after each round. The zone maker had to decide how much the zone was worth according to the position. I really can't see that anything has actually gotten worse with the ZCT, SunYour did a great job evolving it into what it is today.


How has zone making changed over the years? I remember from our trip to Denmark a few years ago that the zones often was placed next to a bike path, not on it as we are used to today. When did this shift happen?

Interesting question! I think it was in 2012, Västerås was quite a ghost town until then but afterwards it exploded with turfers. People from there started complaining about lawns getting muddy, tire tracks from bikes where destroying the grass. I was reluctant to change this at first since we had a policy that the zones should blend into the surrounding, they were literally supposed to be placed on lawns and avoid streets and paths. Eventually I came to the conclusion that this was probably for the best and me and blabert had quite the work to be done, rebuilding zones. I think that for the "turf historian" there is a lot to read about that in the forum.


What has been the most rewarding part over the years with being a zone maker?

I love that I had the chance to contribute to the game, especially at such an early stage. I had the chance to build important and central zones, unlike today where zones already exist in such places. It has become much more difficult to build zones in established countries such as Sweden. It has also been a blast to see the game evolve from competing with two or three people in Uppsala to the hundreds that are active daily. There is so much happening around Turf with (pre-corona) meetups in restaurants and pubs, competitions and also activity in schools.


What is the most important aspect of making a good zone to you?

There are two types of zones, interesting ones and then there are filler zones. The latter is necessary but sometimes it's difficult to find a reason to build a zone in a particular place other than activity. I think striving to always make a zone interesting by just giving it some extra time looking at the map, street view and other things is the most important aspect.


What would you wish for that would make zone making easier?

I would love to see a way for turfers to write a short comment about their zone suggestion (ed. In the Turf app). I would also have loved to see a way to vote on suggestions and perhaps also comment on other turfers' suggestions.


Thank you StarDust for answering my questions and sharing some of the history of zone making with Turf insider!


Turf music by RikerBiker

A few weeks ago the turfer RikerBiker shared his latest Turf-song, ”My Turf and Territory (zone taken)” on Facebook in the group "Turf - Outdoor addiction". RikerBiker has been producing music since the late 1990s and has been a turfer since 2017. In his own words: 


”Turf is a concept in Hip Hop and Gangsta Rap culture for the area that various groups in mainly the black residential areas in American suburbs rule over. Since the basic concept in Turf is to take over and own as many zones as possible, this was the reason I chose to do a Hip Hop song this time. In 2019, I did an RnB song called "Knew we were meant to be" which is really about me and the love for Turf as such and the longing you feel before taking that zone that right now feels unattainable. I have also made the completely hilarious LusseTurf Anthem which is based on existing Christmas music which I put a new music loop on top of and created a completely new dubstep inspired song. This song is partly completely "crazy" but so is also the Lusseturf event so I thought it fit well.” 


You can find his Turf songs HERE. New Turf music is being produced as I write this, so I hope you will enjoy the tunes, old and new!


Announcement

Ollals have officially joined Turf Crew to support and promote Turf within the Scout community. In 2022 a Turf Scout event with over 1000 participants is planned in Sweden.


Pimp your Zone

Lately, at least two zones in Uppsala have been 'pimped' by turfers with flowers to brighten up the experience for other turfers. Mumsige and allinug have planted daffodils in BurgarDoft, located on a tiny strip of land between two industrial plots in the northern part of Uppsala. MrXzon has dedicated time, daffodil bulbs, seeds and water to brighten up his 'home zone' ”Tralala” in the southern parts of Uppsala. Here's hoping we'll see more of this around!



Turfa lugnt!/Safe turfing!


//Munin


...if you want to contribute to future Turf Insiders, send your story to insider@turfgame.com :)

TURF INSIDER April 2021-04-10 15:10:10

Round winners

Congratulations to the winners of round 129: Welshman from Lounais-Suomi biked home his first Gold, rumour has it he was just 'cruising along' the last week with a lead of over 100.000 points to cambla from Scotland who took home the Silver medal and Cruachan from Scotland who took the Bronze medal, all three turfed home more than one million points. Well done mates!


Turf Award 2021

It is time to vote for your favorites in Turf Award 2020. Voting is open until the end of April, but don't wait, click HERE and cast your vote in the four different categories. Turfers from four different countries are nominated and the winners will be announced at the Bonanza in September. Hopefully we will be able to meet and greet with the winners, and if that is not possible, we hope they will be showing up digitally :)

Open Event in Linköping 24th of April

Turf Östergötland welcomes everyone to its first open event ever 24 april 2021. The event will be covid-19 secured and the location is in Linköping. Turf Östergötland's goal is to host the Bonanza in the future, the event will be a good practice for the club and the non-local turfers will be familiar with the Bonanza area ;) Read more at turfostergotland.se


Region Battle: Scotland vs Skåne

In March Region Scotland was battling Region Skåne during four weeks, and the battle could be followed at Turfportalen. At first it looked like Skåne would win, but then it turned around and in the end Scotland won with a landslide, the Region battle ended with the score of 11-4 to the Scots. Very well done, mates!

I was checking the score at regular intervals during the battle, as I am sure the following turfers did ;) First out is Kingslayer with his account of the battle, from the point of view of Team Skåne:


And that’s the end of the first intergalactic turf challenge ever! Or at least that’s how it felt for us in Skåne. Despite a day with snow we started out good with a 2-1 win first week, we even won on takes which is unheard of! Second week we got to see what the Scottish turfers are made of when they crushed us 3-0. Third week we came back again after great team work the last hours before the Sunday week break which gave us 2-1 again. Down 4-5 before the last week. Last week we “just” needed win on takes and round unique to win the whole competition. 


The week started pretty good for us, we got a distinct lead on round unique and played even on takes up until the Horrible Saturday. The last 48 hours the Scots decided sleep is for the weak and kept turfing through the nights. We had one man - Tveskägg - who was determined to meet them head on in the darkness, but one man alone cannot stop a hord of Celtic warriors... The Scotts were unearthly in the end and beat us fair and square 11-4. Congrats to the fighting Scottish men and women who made this a memorable event for us. As usual we have gained personal bests, new medals and generally overachieved. And we have had fun at the same time. Just as a regional competition should be.”


CSL has written Team Scotland's account of the battle:

Well, that was a surprise! Never in our wildest dreams did we expect to beat Skåne. Week 1 brought Skåne 2 points to Scotland’s 1 point, and we thought that would be the shape of things to come. But then in Week 2, we had much better weather and won all 3 categories, making it Scotland 4, Skåne 2. In Week 3 we worked very hard, but we couldn’t quite match them, and the score moved to Scotland 5, Skåne 4.


The final week saw much debate about strategy – should we concentrate on takes and give up on round uniques? Opinions varied, and some continued to seek round uniques. The Easter weekend meant that more people were free, and some very effective hamster wheels were set up in several places, which worked very well. Although there were some exhausted Turfers on Sunday morning, they were still chasing round uniques, and overtook in this category in the very last minutes. Thanks to Skåne for being such formidable opponents!



Most of the people in Team Scotland didn’t know one another beforehand, but we’ve exchanged lots of chat and certainly feel as though we know one another now. The competition was exciting and fun, as Kingslayer promised us, and everyone seems to have enjoyed it, winning many medals, and most people moved up several ranks too. I asked some people from different parts of Scotland for comments, and here’s a selection:


BradC, Stirling: “Dunblane has been described as ‘the Västerås of Scotland’, in that it is a small area so over-stuffed with eager Turfers that PPH is meaningless; if you can hang on to a zone for a whole hour in Dunblane, it is a red letter day! This did mean that there was never a problem finding zones to take, and our newness to the sport meant that our zones still had high enough take points to allow us to punch above our weight. If only it wasn't so hilly. We were proud to boast several of the busiest zones in the world during the competition. The fourth-busiest zone, TheLostZone, only existed for three of those four weeks!”


andypatqos, Renfrewshire: “I walked 305 km over 65 hours, most of this with my dog, and some with my wife and kids too. Cyclists will have much bigger figures I guess but for various reasons, mainly the dog, regular cycling doesn’t work for me. Being broadly restricted to Renfrewshire meant some limitations. Met several new Turfers on the way - this year has been the first in 7 that I’ve ever been blocked by someone other than CSL!”


Jarv, East Lothian: “Our area was managed by a small team of walkers and cyclists including an additional non-team Scotland member who cleared zones frantically. Initially the plan was to ‘take some zones and then take some more’. However, strategy evolved significantly over the month. WhatsApp was used heavily to arrange zone clearances, routes and hamster wheels, to share photos and to provide massive encouragement. As time went on, Turfing hours increased significantly. Medals, including World bronze medal for our very own Cruachan, accumulated at an ever-increasing rate, and were celebrated by all. All in all, the team survived the month largely unscathed and are looking forward to the next time!”


Finreir, Scottish Borders: “The Covid restrictions on travel hampered Borders Turfers, and the rules on essential and allowed travel into other areas were assessed and utilised continuously. We soon ran out of easy uniques. Team efforts were centred on the Tweed valley around Peebles, and the Border Abbey towns of Melrose, Kelso and Jedburgh were also raided regularly. Zones were hard won on the steep heights of Glentress and Cademuir forests and wheels performed on the flatter valley floor at Peebles, with great team work achieved.”


tunahunter, East Dunbartonshire: “In areas, like ours, where Turf is less well-established, the contest encouraged us to broaden our horizons. Each of us explored new areas (often in darkness), either first thing in the morning or last thing at night. We connected with nearby Turfers, discussing teamwork and strategy. And thanks to the advice and support of more experienced Turfers in Team Scotland, we really honed our Turfing skills, culminating in a triangular hamster wheel around our town in the final week. It was a great experience to play our part in Team Scotland’s victory. One of the keys to our success was the camaraderie in the team. There were WhatsApp chats full of encouragement, determination, and help with solving problems like how to get to specific zones or where to get best GPS signal!”


klepto7up, Aberdeen: “The Turf match was a wonderful journey where I discovered great places, made new friends and discovered the camaraderie, support and team spirit in the Scottish team was phenomenal.”


CaleZONEian, South Lanarkshire: “Taking part was a great experience and it allowed us to meet new Turfers (virtually and in person). We had to work together to defeat a more experienced and established team. Turf is very popular on the east coast but less so on the west so we didn't have the numbers playing in our area but we did work together and support each other. I cycled over 1600 km during the contest and more than doubled my points target for the round.”


Hodge, Midlothian: “We had a very keen band of local Turfers. We generally kept most areas in Team Scotland hands through the month, no mean feat when you consider distance between the main areas. As the month progressed we also had a lot of other visitors, seeking round uniques. This has left our TP position down for April with adjusted PPH too, with a number of zones now at +6/110, particularly around Penicuik (where we had 3 very active town residents), something which will no doubt settle down as we take it slightly more gently than during the competition.”


Personally I quite miss sitting down at 9 pm to plan my evening trip round zones held by non-Team Scotland Turfers. I saw quite a lot of wildlife on these forays too. Roll on September!”


There you have it, the winners of this March battle is ready to take on the Turf World again in September. Will they manage a double win, just like Uppsala did last year? First a win in a one-on-one Region battle (check!) and then a second win in the Multi Region battle we all hope MaXi will arrange again this year.


What is very clear, is that both teams had lots of fun, got to know each other better and turfed like crazy! Here's hoping we will see teams from more countries signing up for the Multi Region battle in September.


Turfa lugnt!/Safe turfing!


//Munin


...if you want to contribute to future Turf Insiders, send your story to insider@turfgame.com :)

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