Feels like it's written for boy scouts but full of good tips for finding your way and not getting lost in the great outdoors. GPS can't do everything, and you shouldn't rely solely on it. Feels like it's written for boy scouts but full of good tips for finding your way and not getting lost in the great outdoors.
This is a comprehensive guide to choosing and using a compass, as well as various other tools of navigation (as the title suggests). The book is written in a welcoming style that is accessible to all levels of navigators, potential and practiced.
The book is written in a welcoming style that is accessible to all levels of navigators, potential and practiced. What is also great is the authors include many resources for finding the tools they suggest (without feeling like an advertisement), as well as hypothetical scenarios and questions to consider in order to practice the ideas they write about.
The 1999 first edition of this book I bought has a completely wrong explanation of declination adjustment. It says to add declination when west of zero degrees magnetic and subtract when east of it.
I hope the author got it right this time with tithe 1999 first edition of this book I bought has a completely wrong explanation of declination adjustment. It says to add declination when west of zero degrees magnetic and subtract when east of it.
The book is very clear and informative for NEWBIES or those with an urban understanding of too maps and compasses. It's a quick, down and dirty read. This is the book that the Mountaineers (mountaineers.org) use for their basic wilderness navigation course.
The book is very clear and informative for NEWBIES or those with an urban understanding of too maps and compasses. The book describes the process of wilderness navigation using tried and true old school methods.
After my map & compass workshop, though, everything is making sense and the book couldn't be clearer. I think that navigation is just one of those topics (like almost any other, I suppose) that can't really be fully grasped without some practical experience. Thought this book was great.
I think that navigation is just one of those topics (like almost any other, I suppose) that can't really be fully grasped without some practical experience. I'm great with topography maps, but I got this little book to hone my compass reading skills.
I'm great with topography maps, but I got this little book to hone my compass reading skills. The best book out there for learning how to effectively use topographic maps, orienteering compass and GPS.
If you are someone like me, an outdoor enthusiast, you know the relaxation you get while spending the night under the stars or watching a stream of water flow by while sitting near your camp. However, to pick out a beneficial book from a useless one, you will need to know if the information is authentic, along with the credibility of the author, and the writing style.
Read here how they raise the bar on product sustainability, and you too will become a fan to source all your best survival storybooks and outdoor gear from them. This book has several survival stories that serve as examples of how outdoor adventures can turn tragic, when life may be dependent on a single decision.
Using the most recent scientific studies, Laurence explains the sequences of events that can leave an outdoor enthusiast in mortal peril within seconds. This wilderness survival book is a mix of survival science, adventure narrative, and practical advice that has inspired business leaders, military officers, educators, and psychiatric professionals on how to learn to assess risk, take control of stress and make better decisions under pressure.
If you wind up lost in the wilderness, in need of food, shelter, or unable to find your way back to civilization, this survival guide book will be your best friend. The book covers all the basics of getting through life-threatening situations in the outdoors, from navigating in the wild to sending emergency signals to aircraft via a mirror.
This pocket survival guide also covers how to build an emergency shelter, starting a fire, find food and water in the wild, and dealing with lightning, avalanches, and hypothermia. There are loads of recipes all of them equally tasty-looking, but it’s really all the tutorials and detailed information on what cooking equipment you need for camping makes it the best.
The book also offers pro-tips on everything from building your own pizza oven to today’s fresh, modern, healthy approach to cooking and eating outdoors. This book will be enjoyed by people who love cooking under the open sky, whether at a campsite in the woods or at a grill in the backyard.
The wilderness survival book has quizzes, tips, apps, and solid information on budgeting and saving before and during travel, smart booking hacks, notes on tying up loose ends at home, and hints at saving on solo accommodations and packing like a pro to make the most of your adventure. You don’t have to be an extrovert or hooked on adrenaline rushes to have fun, and going it alone is safe if you follow the book’s advice on choosing your destinations and behaving once you’re there.
In it, you will find much that was forgotten, the most ancient and essential skills of humankind, presented in a simple, easy-to-use format with clear instructions. My dear friends, though GPS devices are great, they can break, get lost, or easily be hampered by weather conditions, which makes basic map and compass skills essential for people who love spending time outdoors.
In this classic environmental call to action book, Laura and Guy Waterman write about preserving the ecology of the backcountry. With humor and insight, the Water mans look beyond the ecology of the back-country to explore the factors that make it wild and consider the most difficult wilderness management issues.
Ultimate long-distance hiker Andrew Skunk shares his knowledge in this best survival guide to backpacking gear and skills. The practical and priceless recommendations give you all the tools and techniques you’ll need to hit the trail.
It began as a website and blog when friends Aimee Trudeau, Malayan Kwan, and Emily Nielson joined hands to share their love for wilderness, outdoor education experiences, and knowledge of backcountry cooking via workshops, classes, catering events, and easy yet exciting recipes. Breakfast, trail meals, sweet and savory snacks, dinners, appetizers, side dishes, desserts, even refreshing camp drinks, you can find all this and more in this best survival book.
He also explains how to safely identify trailside herbs, fruits, weeds, and greens that grow worldwide, and shares his delicious, nutrient-dense recipes. Written by Rick Curtis, Director of Princeton University’s Famous Outdoor Recreation Program, this wilderness survival book provides a gear-agnostic approach to the skills and techniques required for enjoyable and safe backcountry hiking.
Published in 1998, and updated and revised in 2005, The Backpacker’s Field Manual illustrates techniques and skills that have been applied, tested, and refined by the experiences of thousands of college students. It also covers how to research access to domestic and international public and private land and how to create a budget for your travel.
Over 100K copies sold The official navigation textbook used in outdoor education courses by thousands of students Map and compass skills remain the foundation for traveling safely in the wilderness The fact is, many people have a really hard time learning how to use a compass, a problem I am all to familiar with, because it plagued me for years too.
I find myself referring to this book often (I have the Kindle version) and picking out useful gems I’ve overlooked on previous read-thrus. The Essential Wilderness Navigator is a good book for beginners because it presents map reading and compass basics in a systematic, incremental fashion with many graphic examples and exercises you can perform outdoors.
Matching contour lines to 3-D landform drawings How to draw a slope profile diagram for a route based on the distances between the contour lines it crosses How to compute a slope gradient How to determine direction of travel with a protractor How to orient a map through terrain association How to find your approximate location through triangulation How to fold a map to preserve the correlation between fold lines and cardinal directions These exercises are very useful to help beginners and non-visual learners internalize the meaning of topographic maps by using them to solve navigation problems, even before the use of a compass is introduced.
Poorly blazed or maintained trail navigation is also covered including more advanced techniques such as baselines, aiming off, bracketing, handrails and catch points. While this isn’t a book about advanced off-trail navigation or bushwhacking, it provides an excellent foundation for people to want to learn those skills first-hand from the wizened bushwhackers, bush pilots, and gold prospectors that haunt our wilderness areas today.
In a world where technology is increasingly taking over our everyday lives, there may come a point where compasses are an antiquated relic of human history. Once it’s aligned, all you need to do is figure out which way is north, mark it red, and then you’ll be able to tell where all the other directions lie relatively speaking.
Let’s take a look at the top-rated hiking compasses, and then we’ll talk about choosing one for you in our guide below. Stunt’s new global compass needle has been modified to maintain a higher degree of accuracy from anywhere in the world.
With advanced features like a sighting mirror, multiple rulers, and a wrist locking lanyard you’ll be able to navigate with accuracy in any conditions. Sighting holes like the one on this compass are a game changer for accurate and reliable navigation in all conditions.
I love the high visibility bezel for reading and adjustment in any lighting condition. This is a mirrored sighting compass for extreme accuracy and would be a perfect pick for those planning to do lots of off-trail navigation, orienteering, or adventure racing.
With an in clinometer, magnifying glass, and multiple navigational scales for map reading and measuring you’ll be able to take this compass all the way from beginner to expert tasks and is the best compass for survival in the backcountry. One of the most important features for accurate navigation on any compass is an adjustable declination which Brenton delivers on the Truancy 3.
This means you’ll have a lighter and more compact compass with robust features and slightly less accuracy overall. You’ll get the same gradient 2-degree bezel and high visibility navigation ring along with the magnifying glass for map reading.
Again, you’ll have to adjust declination with the built-in screwdriver but that comes with its own set of drawbacks and convenience. With plenty of features to accurately navigate for the novice or expert, this compass would be a great middle-ground choice for general backpacking where accuracy is important.
The Silva Explorer Pro may the best survival compass with its Hives color 4X luminous dial for navigating in low light conditions. We’ve already talked briefly about some potentially valuable benefits of choosing to use a compass over other devices for navigation.
Let’s dive in briefly to several great reasons many people choose a compass companion. Sometimes that in a survival kit, the car trunk, or on the dash of a boat for navigation when the “lights go out”.
You can help prevent that with a solar charger, they can charge up those electronics as long as there is sunlight. Adventure races can vary in duration from a few hours to several days when participants must use combinations of running, backpacking, paddling, mountain biking, and other outdoor skills to navigate to and find hidden waypoints.
If you’re going to spend time in the wilderness hiking, backpacking, or recreating in any way, it can be important to build a base level of familiarity with navigation and orienting yourself to your surroundings. Every year rescue operations are carried out in seemingly avoidable situations where hikers have gotten lost only to find out that they were mere miles from an easy escape.
Understanding how to orient the map to your surroundings, recognize landmarks, and navigate using simple terrain features will provide a huge boost for your safety (and ego). Almost invariably, they have clear acrylic baseplates so that maps can be viewed and read through the compass.
By adding fluid inside the needle chamber, the compasses are buffered from movement and vibrations. Using fluid helps to dampen the swing of the compass and temper erratic movement when navigating.
With clear baseplates, they’re meant to navigate with topographic maps, often featuring rulers, declination scales, sighting mirrors, and clinometers. Well, just to make sure you’re set off on the correct path we’re going to talk through a few more key points with compasses use and maintenance.
One of the best ways to become an advanced compass user is to participate in a sport called orienteering. This sport forces you to use a map and compass to navigate to hidden locations in the fastest time possible.
Remember that your compass is meant to work outdoors and may also be disrupted or inaccurate in vehicles or buildings. Well… there are a couple ways but in general just managing your gear in the field with a little more intentional care is a good place to start.
To be totally honest, I will usually skip the compass if I’m on a short hike with cell phone reception in a local area I know. For simple afternoon hikes at the local park with the kids, a small pocket compass is probably all you need for backup at most.
When the poop hits the fan that compass, and your mastery of it, can mean life or death. People want to know if their compass is inaccurate because of their car, cell phone, magnetic rocks, or magical aliens.
One of the biggest problems to watch out for in the field is compass accuracy around power lines. In general, you want to be in the open and clear of large nearby metallic or electrical objects when using a compass.
Finding moss on the north side of the tree Trying to remember which way you were heading last Looking for constellations in the wrong hemisphere Barring that, a fluid filled compass with a good, long baseplate will get you close enough.
In order to accurately triangulate your position you need three (or more) visible and discernible topographic features within sight line. Usually this only happens on open mountain balds or aggressive terrain where you can see a long distance.
I always bring a GPS as backup because it’s cheap insurance for not dying scared, alone, and starving in the woods if you read the map wrong. You could also learn a lot by reading through a good book with a map and compass in hand.
There are tons of book options out there, but I can personally vouch for the VOLS WildernessNavigation manual written by my friend Darren Wells. After you’ve given it a read, or consecutively, you can learn a lot by watching some how-to videos on YouTube and following along with your own map and compass.
You’ll learn a lot by doing it in the field and these short adventure races are a great way to test yourself. Learning to read a map and compass and navigate properly will instill a sense of self-reliance and skill that you won’t get from following the arrow on a GPS.
For any hiker, backpacker, or survivalist, a command of map and compass skill is critical to growth. If you want to comment or recommend a compass I didn’t include, please use my contact form to get in touch.