The technique keeps features mirrored to their representation on the printed page.

In orienteering, the most common scale is 1:10,000, which hugely increases the amount of detail. the sun doesnt rise exactly east or fall exactly west since its so far up the equator. Underlying the magnetic needle, and printed on the base of the compass housing is the orienting arrow and orienting lines.

Trails will weave in and out of the hills, you’ll encounter cliffs and rivers and other obstacles in your way. Let’s say we’re at point A, now set your compass on the map so that the straight side of the base plate lines up with your position. Repeat this with a second landmark (and third if you want to be very accurate). Once you’ve finished you can draw a line on the map along the edge of your compass.

Apply these tricks next time you’re in the woods with a map on an adventure of your own. But the system of shapes and lines — developed in Scandinavia and honed over decades — becomes a streamlined system of information for experienced orienteers.

If there are multiple obvious landmarks on the horizon you may be able to determine your approximate location from their positions on the maps. Here are a few things to keep in mind: The top-left map shows an example of a hill/mountain structure – the contour interval on this map is 500 feet/contour line.

First off, a bearing describes a direction in terms of degrees. This is the difference in elevation between each line, and every map will include this interval in its legend or near its scale. Well, declination is the angle difference between true north and magnetic north. Learn these skills and become a master of backwoods travel. its hard. This way you can see the object and the bezel at the same time. It will have bearing markings around the bezel (azimuth rim) of the compass housing, that indicate the cardinal directions (NESW), and smaller interval bearings between them. From next-gen tech to ingenious innovation, our weekly peek at emerging products examines the sometimes cutting-edge, sometimes quirky world of gear design. The bottom-left map shows a valley (or depression) structure. Prior to 0.54, only the "old" metal compass was available. To use the compass, it must be equipped in your hands and opened (left click). 4 comments. The technique keeps you more focused on the navigation at hand and lets you see, at a fast glance while moving, your approximate location among the tangle of mapped detail at any time. Determining distance on a straight road on a topo map is easy. Depending on how difficult the terrain is, repeat this every few hundred meters or so. Hold your compass up with the direction of travel arrow pointing away from you and directly at the landmark. So let’s go through that real quick. These physical features or landforms can be used as a directional. Always ensure you have a recent map of the area you will traveling through, Learn the basics of how to use a map and compass BEFORE going on your trip, Plan ahead, and plot your planned route beforehand & share it with a friend or family member, Solely rely on modern technology – batteries can die, phones & GPS devices can be dropped in streams. Modern compasses can come with mirrors, degree markings, spinning dials, and sights. And if you can’t use that map, at best you’re going to look silly, and at the worst, some professional folks may be lifting you out of the wilderness with a chopper after an unexpected elongation of your trip. This can lead to errors, especially over longer distances. WNDR Alpine Shows Off New Winter Tech, Caught on Film: Avalanche Swallows Pro Skier Nick McNutt, Skier Moms Take Center Stage in Arc'teryx Film 'Motherload', Prodigies vs. Pros in This Wild Faction Ski Edit, Not Slowing Down: Triathlete Rach McBride on Sport, Training, and Career, On Sale Now: 45% Off Coleman 2-Burner Camping Stove, Today's Bargains: 4 Steals to Start Your Weekend. Knowing where the compass is pointing will tell you whether you should be facing north or going the other way. The needle in your compass will only point to magnetic north. Try using this to get how compasses work in general. These devices have a mirror that flips up over the compass which allows you to simultaneously follow your sight line while making sure you’re keeping your magnetic needle pointed at 0°. By using our Services or clicking I agree, you agree to our use of cookies. A good orienteer is faster. Pull the compass in front of you with the direction of travel arrow pointing away from you. Learn to use a map & compass so you never get lost. Orienteers often run with a map in hand, keeping a thumb planted on the map near their current location. Support us! Let’s begin our introduction to compasses by taking a look at a standard, modern day, orienteering compass, and identifying its parts. Press J to jump to the feed. Again, if you start in the north-west (point B) and move south-east you will cross multiple contour lines until you hit the middle of the map. Bearings are given in degrees between 0 (North) back around through 360 degrees to north again. Compass can help you find your way when you don’t know the direction and what you are looking for. If you want to find your exact position, you use the process called triangulation. This greater detail allows for extremely precise navigation.

If you can keep the “red in the shed” as you move then you should be on the correct bearing. There are rulers that you can use along with your map scale to help you calculate distance. If you plan to spend any time out in the great outdoors, then knowing how to use a map and compass is a key skill. You can see the shape of this topography by looking at the Cross-Section A-A’ on the right.

This page was last edited on 13 December 2019, at 09:29. Once you determine the declination of your region, rotate the azimuth ring around your compass housing by adding/subtracting the corresponding number of degrees. In orienteering, objects such as boulders, park benches, picnic tables, fences, and the subtle crooks of a ravine are obvious on maps of 1:10,000 scale. The last and probably the most important reason why you should learn how to use a compass for orienteering is the fact that a compass can save your life. To use the compass, it must be equipped in your hands and opened (left click). If you find yourself in a place where you can’t tell which way is up, a compass will show you the way. Next, find the location of the campsite on your map and connect the two places with an imaginary line.

A compass points direction as you race the clock, looking for hidden flags. You’re running through the woods, a map in your hand. And the North marker on the bezel is pointing to North on the map. Compass will give you the direction to move forward and have fun! Many people do not realize but there is a difference between the north on your map, and the north your compass is pointing to. Compass will also help you with route finding in an emergency.

Many national parks and reserves provide basic maps that show trails, natural features, canoe routes, etc. You are somewhere along this line. If you find yourself in a jam that will not allow you to proceed, a compass can help you find a way out. It is especially helpful in orienteering when it comes to approaching a building. Once the orienting lines are running north-south, look at the index line to read the bearing. I can't navigate worth a shit. Roads and trails are represented by lines, dotted and solid. Hold the compass at eye level and point it at the object. Now comes the fun part. Your map (and yourself) are now be orientated north. In North America, declination ranges from 30°E in Alaska to about 30°W in Newfoundland. ProTip: Getting a sighting compass with mirror (or lensatic compass) allows you to hold the compass further away from your body. Buildings look like blocks. The second your GPS gets wet, runs out of juice, or when you need to point lost hikers in the right direction, or direct others to that sweet cave you saw a few days back, you’re going to use that map. It happens to the best of us – you miss a turn, wandered slightly off course and now find yourself in unfamiliar terrain. The graphical overload can be confusing at first. It uses north to determine directions. Luckily it isn’t too hard to use your compass and when paired with a good map. A liquid capsule that contains the magnetic needle is rotating  housing. MyOpenCountry is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. Start by finding your current location on the map. An inch on a 1:24,000 scale map, for example, represents about 2,000 feet in the real world; in the 1:10,000 scale an inch equals about 800 feet. By signing up, you agree to receive emails from GearJunkie and Aparso. Compass has many uses. So technically you use both for traveling. Compass skills can be daunting at first but they get way easier with practice. Make sure that the direction of travel arrow is pointing in the direction of the landmark. In addition, you’ll often find scales/rulers along the edge of the baseplate to aid in measuring distances on maps. Even using GPS devices to get around, you’re going to have to be able to orient yourself. While keeping the direction of travel arrow steady on your target, use your other hand to rotate the compass housing, until you have the red orienting arrow directly underneath the compass needle’s red end. A good map is more accurate. Orienteering Compass Parts. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The benefits of using a compass in orienteering are immense. north. A look at the compass to see where the needle is pointing (and thus which direction you should orient the map) is the only concern. Ensure that the compass bezel is set to 0 degrees i.e. Log in or sign up to leave a comment log in sign up. In addition, it is very easy to make a mistake or forget, which can quickly render you off course. Great blog! At the prominent feature — the attack point — line up a route to your ultimate destination, estimating direction and distance from the map.

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