Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Navigating Using A Compass

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When you are hiking or enjoying any sort of outdoor adventure, a compass will be one of your most loyal (and most important!) companions, but while many people go into their outdoor adventures with a compass in hand, a lot of these same people actually have no clue how to use a compass properly! If you are planning an outdoor adventure of your own, make sure you not only have a good compass with you, but that you are also schooled in how to use it.

The first thing you need to know about a compass is that the only thing it can do is point to magnetic north, but if you know how to implement this information correctly, it can be invaluable.

When you get started using your compass for navigation, you should hold it perfectly flat in the palm of your hand, which will allow the compass needle to point north. On most compasses, there is a red end to the needle and a white end to the needle; the red end of the needle will always point north, and the other end will of course point south. Once you are holding the compass flat and the red part of the needle is pointing north, turn the compass until the "N" on the compass lines up with the needle, which provides you with an accurate reading as far as every direction.

Finally, there should be markings on your compass around the edge that range from 0 degrees to 360 degrees; by using these, you can figure out exactly which degree you need to follow in order to reach the landmark you hope to reach, and as you walk in this direction - even when you cannot see the landmark you hope to hit - you will know that you are heading exactly where you need to be!

You should make sure you always keep a close eye on your surroundings when you are traveling outdoors, so that you will have more to guide you than the compass alone; but should your memory or your wits fail you, you will still be able to find your way with the help of your trusty compass!

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