Wilderness Navigation Course - Kitsap - 2018

Navigation Course

Wilderness Navigation

The Wilderness Navigation Course provides the fundamentals of wilderness navigation to prepare you to competently and confidently enjoy hiking, climbing or getting off trail in the back country.

Would you like to learn how to avoid getting lost? Are you planning to go off trail where good navigation skills are needed? If so then this in-depth navigation course is for you. This course requires that you attend either a wilderness navigation classroom workshop, or complete the Elearning on-line workshop, followed by a one-day field trip at the Kitsap Cabin and Gold Mountain, near Bremerton WA. 
See date options below. 

The course is available to both Mountaineers members and non-members.  If you are out-of-area and cannot participate in our field trip, you can still gain useful knowledge from the online workshop modules and may be able to do an equivalent field trip or attend one when you visit our area. 

The online workshop is the preferred method to complete the course and is provided for those who do not live nearby, prefer to take the course online, or can't fit the in-person course into your schedule. The online workshop covers the same material as the in-person class, and  students must complete either the Elearning workshop or in-person workshop before they can attend the field tripThe lecture is not optional, but you can either do it online or in person. Online learners will have the opportunity to post questions to a forum. Instructors will answer the questions, and if students are interested, instructors will host a real-time online discussion.

This course is a graduation requirement for other Mountaineers courses including Basic Alpine Climbing, Alpine Scrambling, Backcountry Snowshoeing, and others. People who complete this course will receive a Navigation badge valid for 3 years. 

SIGN UP PROCEDURE: 

  1. Register for this Wilderness Navigation Course and pay the course fee (registration link located in green box at right).  
    Choose either one of the Elearning workshops or in-person workshops. You will receive an email providing you access to the online workshop a few days before the start date. You will be able to access the workshop for the listed duration of the workshop. The online workshop is expected to take 10-15 hours to complete, not including the readings in the book. You will use your compass and Baring quadrangle to solve a  series of navigation story problems. 
    Choose a Field Trip date. (The field trip must be done after completing the online workshop or the classroom workshop, but you should register for it now).  There will be one or two field trips in March and in October for this course.
  2. Purchase the required book and one or two maps (listed below - two for eLearning; one for classroom). Acquire a compass that meets the "Mountaineers Approved" requirements, as described in Required Equipment or Course Materials below.

FIELD TRIP:

The Field Trip takes about 6 hours and is done in two parts.  We will meet at the Kitsap Cabin and review proper compass use, verify declination settings, take a series of bearings, work some map and compass problems, and explain the leap frog and solo navigation methods.  We will then travel to the Gold Creek trailhead, hike up Gold Mountain and do the rest of the exercises.  Expect 2-4 miles round trip; ~1200 ft. elevation gain.  You'll spend part of the day off trail in the woods using your compass to take bearings and following bearings. Carpooling is encouraged.  You will need a Washington state Discover Pass to park at the trailhead.  You can view other students' carpool preferences by viewing the roster on the field trip activity page. (The activity page can be found after sign-up under "My Activities" when you click your name on the Mountaineers website). 

See the field trip page below for more information about a typical field trip. Each field trip has the same meeting time and location. VERY IMPORTANT - See the Course Materials below to download the Field Trip Student Packet and pay particular attention to the driving directions. We recommend printing that packet to bring along, but we'll also have extra copies at the field trip.  A gallon size ziplock bag is useful to keep your map dry.

READING ASSIGNMENT (DURING THE WORKSHOP): 

Prior to the eLearning or the Classroom Workshop you need to read the Burns & Burns book Wilderness Navigation, 3rd Ed. Mountaineers members get an additional 20% discount when ordering it online from Mountaineers Books as well as purchasing it in person at the Mountaineers Bookstore located in the Seattle Mountaineers Program Center. Please support the Mountaineers by purchasing it directly from the Mountaineers. (The eBook version can only be purchased directly from mountaineersbooks.org).

Required Equipment: See the Required Equipment tab below for more information on the Compass Features and Maps. 

MINIMUM TECH SPECS FOR ONLINE WORKSHOP:

  • Flash (for PC/Mac laptop and desktop computers) - Adobe Flash Player 10.3 or later
  • Desktop Browsers - Windows: Internet Explorer 8 and later, Microsoft Edge (latest version), Google Chrome (latest version), Firefox (latest version); Mac: Safari 7 and later, Google Chrome (latest version)
  • Mobile Browsers - Safari in Apple iOS 7 and later, Google Chrome (latest version) in Android OS 4.1 and later
  • Screen Resolution -  While not a requirement, Litmos, the Learning Management System (LMS), is best viewed using a minimum screen resolution of 1024×768.
  • Special Notes - User tests have shown that sporadic audio issues may occur when running the course on iPad devices. All of the lectures/presentations in the course include audio. Should you not hear audio when viewing a lecture/presentation, please verify the error on a laptop or desktop computer and then notify the Mountaineers. Please provide the specification details about your iPad device when reporting the issue, as this will help the Mountaineers technical team troubleshoot the problem. Submit errors by email to dougc@mountaineersbooks.org.

Badges you will earn:

Course Requirements
Course Activity Date Availability Leader
Wilderness Navigation *Elearning* (optional)
Online Classroom
Mon, Sep 17, 2018 -
Fri, Sep 28, 2018
Registration closes Sep 15
5 participants
5 instructors
Wilderness Navigation Lecture (optional)
Kitsap Cabin & Forest Theater
Thu, Oct 4, 2018
Registration closes Sep 24
2 participants on waitlist
0 instructors
Navigation Field Trip
Green Mountain: Gold Creek Trail
Sat, Oct 6, 2018
Registration closes Sep 24
9 participants on waitlist
2 instructors
Roster
Required Equipment

A good compass with sighting mirror, adjustable declination, and an inclinometer, such as the Suunto MC-2, or similar.  Wilderness Navigation is the required text book for the course.  

The USGS Baring quadrangle map with Romer is required for those taking the eLearning (on-line) workshop.  This is not required for the classroom workshop.

The USGS Wildcat Lake quadrangle map is required for all students for use during the field trip.

Course Materials
Name/Description Type
USGS UTM.pdf

File PDF document File
USGS_Topo_Map_Symbols.pdf

File PDF document File
ISU UTM Paper

An additional explanation of the UTM grid system.

File File
USFS Map Scales Fact Sheet - FS105-02

Paper describing the various USGS map scales.

File File
Kitsap Branch Wilderness Navigation Course Outline

Topic outline of the course that covers eLearning and classroom versions of the course. Updated January 2018 to include electronic navigation planning using CALTOPO.

File File
Classroom Workshop Brief

Powerpoint brief covering all wilderness navigation topics we will cover in the classroom workshop.

File IEF image File
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