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How to Read a Tulip Diagram

Tulip diagrams are a standardised way of presenting navigation instructions that everyone can use and are also easy to read.  The basic principle is that the diagram represents the junction you are coming to.  As an aide to make it even easier this will be marked with a black ball.  There will be an exit of the junction with an arrow.  This will be your exit.

How to Read a Tulip set of instructions

Now you know how to read each individual diagram you only need to learn the distances between each instruction.  Therefore, if it is 4.1 miles from the last instruction you will see a figure of 4.1 next to the junction you are coming to.  Alongside this you will also see a figure for the cumulative miles travelled in the run so far.

How to Organise a Run

Contrary to popular belief it is fairly easy to organise a run and extremely satisfying when you give pleasure to other club members.  Also, the areas that you know will be different from other people so only you can provide such unique local knowledge.  Arranged below in bullet point list are a basic set of instructions

Decide on a venue to be the end of the run.  If you choose a pub the run will be a success.  It should preferably have enough easy parking for about 10 -15 cars.  Check with the landlord he is happy and that he can provide food.  He should be happy if you say there are 20 to 30 people arriving.  You should also get an idea of what time he stops cooking as this might affect your starting time.

Next decide on where to start from.  Again this should have enough parking for the members who arrive to chat before the run starts.  Check you have permission to use as a start point.

Go the start point and zero your mileometer

Write your first instruction and draw the diagram , for example, at the gates turn right.

Proceed to the next junction and record the cumulative mileage.  At the same time note the junction and draw a diagram of it.  Also look around for any helpful detail such as signposted etc.. A pre designed set of these instructions can be found here See here.  As there are many types of junctions you may not be able to find the odd one.  Personally what I do is to take a print of the standard junctions with me all marked alphabetically.  In that way all you need to do is to record what junction it is e.g. Junction A from the diagrams.

When the route is complete you are now in a position to prepare the Word document.  An example is provided here Run example.

Basically there should be a minimum of five columns, the first is the junction number, one to record the stage mileage, one to record the cumulative mileage, one for the Tulip diagram and lastly one for any helpful comments such as “opposite the White Lion Pub, signposted Bisley".

One final point always remember to include your mobile phone number so people can contact you if they hit problems.

Once completed it is good practise to go round again to check all the details and mileages are correct.  It should be noted that no two cars mileages are the same so if you are to try the route in a different car you may get different mileages.

As soon as you have detail about the run that you want to publish send to me to post on the web.  These details will include where the run is to start and at what time.

When at the meeting before the run please mention so that everyone is aware of the starting details etc.  It will also give you an idea of likely attendance.  This will be helpful in giving an idea of the numbers to copy for handing out.  It is always wise to print at least a half dozen extra to ensure you have enough.

Advise when you would like an email sent out to remind people when and where the run will be.  Please provide the words.

On the night arrive at least 15 minutes before the published start time and get ready for the rush.  Keep a list of who has arrived.  It is normally good to send those who are wishing to eat first.  Ensure everyone signs the club attendance book befoe they set off.

Send them off at regular intervals, about 3 - 5 minutes apart depending on how many are going on the run and also what time you need to finish. 

After they have all departed go to the pub and hope they turn up.

Finally, do a quick write up to publish on the web and send to me.  Pictures are really good if you have a camera.

If you could include the Word document you printed from that would be great as we can save and could use again some time



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