Trail Crafter III – Natural Navigator Course

Sometimes the way is as bold as can be yet easy to miss if your eyes are busy looking at the map. Photo Courtesy of Marlene Webb.

Sometimes the way is as bold as can be yet easy to miss if your eyes are busy looking at the map. Photo Courtesy of Marlene Webb.

Imagine your self backpacking along and fumbling with your map and compass.  Your moving along quite well and then that little voice tells you something is not quite right.  What you are seeing on the land is not quite matching how you are reading the map.   You might even be lost.  What happened?  It happens all too often that a person walks right past something they had been looking for because he was walking along with his nose in the map instead of his eyes on the land.

The Natural Navigation course is designed to help you lift your eyes off the map and onto the land.  It is not that difficult to learn to read the map.  Students often pick this up rather quickly.  The difficulty lies in reading the land.  What are the signposts that the land is providing? Signposts from plants, animals, topography, weather and celestial bodies are plentiful in nature.  Yet, we hike right by and never notice them.

Three major clues are given in this picture as to the cardinal directions. Can you identify them? Keep reading for the answers.

Three major clues are given in this picture as to the cardinal directions. Can you identify them? Keep reading for the answers.

The Natural Navigation course addresses more advanced navigation skills.   Raising your nature awareness and learning to recognize nature’s signpost will compliment your map and compass skills and help you become a more proficient land navigator.   Backpack with the confidence of staying found even in challenging terrain.

The course starts with guided hikes while the signposts are being discovered.  These signpost will then become your compass and your map will come from information you gain from the surrounding landscape.  As a group we then return to the starting point of the course.  Along the return trip you will find your senses awakening to the many things that  were simply missed on previous nature outings.  You will also find more comfort being in nature using the skills of navigation using natures signposts.

Students on the Natural Navigation course should be comfortable with basic trail craft skills and map and compass skills.  If you need to refresh these skills, the Trial Crafter I course covers basic trail craft skills and the Trail Crafter II course covers Map and Compass Skills.

The moon in the picture above is rising in the east, determined from the side of the rounder curve facing toward the sun; the snow at the base of the cliff indicates the winter season so the sun is low in the southern sky causing the large shadow north of the cliff; and of course the shadows keep the northern aspects cooler so the snow melts slower on the north side of objects.  Did you see these?  Join us this summer and see what you have been missing.

Course Dates, Rates and Registration

The Natural Navigator Course:  June 26th – 30th, 2017

Tuition:  $875

Registration information is available on the Course Registration page.

 Enrollment Limit: 6 Students

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