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Map & Compass Resources
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Greg Riddle
(gregriddle) - F

Locale: White Mtns
Map & Compass Resources on 05/13/2008 14:23:34 MDT Print View

I'm looking for recommendations for the best resources for learning to use map & compass for backcountry navigation skills. Short of taking an actual course, I tend to learn faster from DVD's but a book is OK too.

Also, any resouces for using a watch/alt/compass with map instead of traditional compass?

Kyle Purcell
(dufus934) - F

Locale: North Texas
Re: Map & Compass Resources on 07/23/2008 12:05:32 MDT Print View

This would be a good thing to have/know. Some one must know.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Map & Compass Resources on 07/23/2008 12:45:38 MDT Print View

There should be tons of online resources from doing a simple yahoo or google search. Look at REI website for common navigation books.

Edited by jshann on 07/23/2008 12:51:01 MDT.

Michael Crosby
(djjmikie) - MLife

Locale: Ky
RE:"Map & Compass Resources" on 07/23/2008 12:54:09 MDT Print View

Start here. Then go here.

Edited by djjmikie on 07/23/2008 12:58:00 MDT.

Nat Lim
(LithiumMetalman) - F

Locale: Cesspool Central!
Re: Map & Compass Resources on 07/23/2008 13:46:44 MDT Print View

Check out "Freedom to the Hills", haa an excellent section on map & compass, very well thought out, clear, easy to read and many illustrations.

Richard Matthews
(food) - F

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Map & Compass Resources on 07/23/2008 15:32:23 MDT Print View

My primary system of navigation is map reading. I carry a compass, but have not used it in years. FIRST learn to navigate with a good topo map. Use of the other tools will be easy after you have developed map reading skills.

Duane Hall
(PKH) - M

Locale: Nova Scotia
Map and compass skills on 07/24/2008 02:33:16 MDT Print View

You might try "The Essential Wildnerness Navigtor", David Seidman, Ragged Mountain Press, 1995. This should tell and show you all you need to know.


(drown) - F - MLife

Locale: Shenandoah
"Map & Compass Resources" on 07/24/2008 07:46:06 MDT Print View

I second Duane's recommendation.

I would also add that everyone interested in learning navigation with a map and compass to try orienteering. There are lots of local clubs with events almost every weekend in spring and fall. It is a very low cost activity that is certain to improve your navigation skills as well as your fitness if you take it seriously enough and start running the courses. At better events you can get on a 12 Km course and practice keeping a bearing over very long distances and see what happens to your accuracy. You learn to find all sorts of features to use and the 1:10,000 scale maps are very fun to use.


Locale: Pacific Northwet
Re: Map & Compass Resources on 07/24/2008 08:27:02 MDT Print View

This site goes over some basics:

Also a good book that is clearly written and goes over the basics is "Be expert with map and compass" by Bjorn Kjellstrom. I'd recommend that book as a starter. I've seen it at Barns and Noble and other good bookstores.

René Enguehard
(ahugenerd) - MLife

Locale: Newfoundland
Re: Map & Compass Resources on 07/29/2008 12:54:00 MDT Print View

That's basically why I did a geography degree along with my computer science one. :) Seriously, there are a number of good texts on this issue, most of which are probably in your local university's geography department (assuming they have one). Give them a buzz. :)

Dean F.
(acrosome) - MLife

Locale: Back in the Front Range
map reading on 07/29/2008 13:21:03 MDT Print View

Join the military. BELIEVE ME, they will teach you land navigation. And it will only cost you four years of your life (probably)... :-)

(strong806) - F
RE: Map & Compass Resources on 08/28/2008 21:12:41 MDT Print View

You could find an Old Boyscout Handbook at Half-Price Books or on Amazon, that's where I learned some basic skills.

Tad Englund
(bestbuilder) - F - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Map & Compass Resources on 08/28/2008 21:40:12 MDT Print View

I prefer visual (DVD) also as the preferred way to learn, but after searching the web and other literature the most recommended source I found was a book:
“Wilderness Navigation” by Bob and Mike Burns, printed by the Mountaineers, in Seattle.
It even has sample problems in the appendix to make sure you have learn the information.
I checked it out from the library and after reading it I purchased the book for my personal library.
It’s the best I’ve found on the subject