Introduction to Map & Compass Field Trip - Union Bay Natural Area

Field trip: Introduction to Map & Compass

Introduction to Map & Compass Field Trip - Union Bay Natural Area

An easy hike on the loop trail at the Union Bay Natural Area, located next to the Center for Urban Horticulture. Students will have an excellent opportunity for hands-on instruction in a very small group setting. Navigational practice will focus on measuring and plotting bearings, and situational awareness.

  • Easy
  • Easy
  • Mileage: 1.0 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 20 ft
  • High Point Elevation: 20 ft

We will meet at the Center for Urban Horticulture, 3501 NE 41st St, Seattle. You will either be in a morning session from 9-12:30, or an afternoon session from 1-4:30. Please allow 3.5 hours to complete the field trip.

Topics include:

  • Situational Awareness
  • Routefinding
  • Terrain Recognition
  • Pacing
  • Understanding declination
  • Measuring (taking) and plotting bearings in the field
  • Measuring (taking) and plotting bearings on a map
  • Orienting the map
  • Triangulation techniques
  • Other topics as time permits

Please note that this class is not the Wilderness Navigation Course and does not satisfy the graduation requirement for the Snowshoe, Scrambling, and Climbing courses. This is an Intro class designed to teach basic concepts and skills. There is not a badge issued upon graduating.


Center for Urban Horticulture

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

A map and compass will be provided. You must use the compass provided (Suunto MC-2 USGS). Be prepared for rain. Wear good walking/hiking shoes. We will mostly be on a flat gravel/dirt trail.

Trip Reports