4 September 2008

Taking A Compass Bearing


You use a compass for navigating across the hills in mist or in darkness. Especially useful for descending safely off the hills in darkness.

1. Place the compass on the map, so that the long edge of the compass passes through your current point and the point you wish to travel to.

2. Ensure your direction of travel arrow on the compass base-plate points from your current point to the point you wish to travel to.

3. Hold the base plate tightly on the map.

4. Carefully rotate the compass wheel until the red and black lines on the bottom of the compass wheel are parallel with the blue map grid-lines, which run from top to bottom (north to south).

5. The red lines on the bottom of the compass wheel need to point to north on your map (top of map).

6. The black lines on the bottom of the compass wheel need to point to south on your map (bottom of map).

7. Double check the long edge of your compass still passes through your current point and the point you wish to travel to.

8. Remove the compass from the map.

9. Hold the compass flat, directly in front of your chest, with the string towards you and the direction of travel arrow pointing away from you.

10. Physically turn yourself around slowly until the red tip of the moving compass needle lies on top of the red tip of the arrow on the bottom of the compass.

11. When you look straight up you are now looking along the line which you need to travel to reach your next point.


In the next newsletter find out about Magnetic Variation and Following a Bearing.

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