Map and Compass Navigation

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.

Land navigation is an important aspect of Trail Craft.  Trail craft is the skill of moving through nature.  Whether hiking on a trail or navigating through unmarked territory, land navigation has several applications and encompasses skills such as reading a map and compass, reading the land and vegetation, taking and following bearings, macro and micro navigation and planning a route.

Exciting? or Daunting? Land Navigation skills will open new worlds for exploration and discovery in nature. Photo courtesy of Terry Webb.

Could you plan a route from map information?  When hiking unmarked territory, could you determine the best line of travel from vegetation you might see from a distance or the aspect of a hill?  Could you plot you location on a map and determine the location’s coordinates in order that you might be able to find the location again or let a buddy know where the location is (without using a GPS)?   These are the skills that the classic trail campers knew and used.  The skills that made it possible to travel off the beaten path.

Desert DAWN’s Map and Compass Navigation Workshop has two primary goals: first to provide students with the skills  to travel unmarked routes; and second, through these skills gain the confidence to explore more out of the way areas and discover more in nature.  The  workshop focusses heavily on map and compass skills.  Students will learn:

Learning the basics of reading a map.
Photo courtesy of Terry Webb.

      • The information that is provided on the 7.5 minute United States Geological Survey (USGS) maps;
      • the components of a compass;
      • the skill of reading a map;
      • how to use a compass with a map;
      • how to take and follow bearings;
      • how to plot coordinates;
      • how to plan routes (macro navigation); and
      • how to adjust routes based on information obtained while hiking (micro navigation).

Available Workshops

Hosting a workshop is easy.  If you are interested in hosting a workshop, please visit our Hosting a Workshop page.

To find a workshop in your area, please use the Workshop Contact form .

View other workshop descriptions from theWorkshops page.

Explore More:

Woodcraft Camping Courses               Custom Excursions                Family Excursions               Day Hikes
What is Woodcraft Camping?              Woodcraft Skills – Our Core Curriculum
Vision and Mission        Contact Us          Staff Stories

One Response to Map and Compass Navigation

  1. I was seeking this particular info for a very long time. Thank you and good luck.

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