Introduction to Map & Compass Lecture - Online Classroom

Lecture: Introduction to Map & Compass

Introduction to Map & Compass Lecture - Online Classroom

The lecture combines a vivid, detailed exploration of how a map and compass work together. The field trip compliments the lecture with hands-on practice, through repetition in a small group setting to give the student a solid understanding of navigational principles.

COVID-19: Learn about our most up-to-date guidance for participants and leaders on our COVID-19 Response page. All participants and leaders must agree to the COVID-19 Code of Conduct before participating in this Mountaineers activity.
  • For Beginners (Getting Started Series)
  • Mileage: 1.0 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 20 ft

Online Classroom, SIGN ON TIME OPENS AT 6PM, INTRODUCTIONS START AT 6:15, CLASS LECTURE STARTS PROMPTLY AT 6:30 and ends at 9pm. The lecture will be recorded and made available to students for review.

A map & compass are part of the 10 Essentials, but if you don't know how to use them then they're just extra weight in your backpack! Learn the basics in this workshop, topics include:

  • Concepts of route finding and staying found
  • Understanding contour lines
  • Terrain recognition
  • Understanding declination
  • Measuring and plotting bearings on the map
  • Measuring and plotting bearings in the field
  • Back bearing and triangulation techniques
  • Introduction to altimeter use
  • Features to consider when buying a compass
  • Other topics as time permits

Please note that this workshop is not the Wilderness Navigation Course and does not satisfy the navigation requirement for the Snowshoe, Scrambling, and Climbing courses. This course serves as an introduction to reading a map and using a compass, primarily for "On-Trail" travel. It's a great introduction to this equipment and these skills. If you fully understand what a bearing is, can explain declination, know how to use the UTM grid, and understand the relationship between measuring and plotting bearings and are interested in further expanding and refining these skills, search for our "Wilderness Navigation Course."

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

No compass or special equipment is required. A recorded version of the class will be available for review.

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