How To Use A Compass To Navigate

Knowing How To Use A Compass Is Vital In The Backcountry

Do you know how to use a compass correctly? This sounds like a silly question but it is quite amazing how many people would say that they either don’t even carry a compass anymore or they have one but would have a lot of trouble using it correctly if they needed to.

Sadly now that the GPS has taken over our navigating tasks the ability to use a traditional compass and map is fast fading. But do you know what, using a compass and map in conjunction with your GPS makes both pieces of equipment even more useful and just maybe your compass might be the only tool you have if your GPS happens to pack it in.

Because I like using a compass and wanted to share this I have found this great video which might be a bit long but which also gives some great instructions on how to use a compass….


I also found a excellent article which is basically a video tool on the many different styles of compass and the uses to which you can put a compass, the author Richard Davidian has gone to great lengths to make sure that you will know how to use a compass so please enjoy..

How to Use A Compass Safely And Effectively

Even if you use GPS to navigate in the wilderness, reading a compass is a skill that you should know in case your GPS fails.

How to Read A Compass

Redneck gang member Jimmi Ent and Pat the Wizard show us how to correctly use a compass

4-H Forestry Facts: Map Reading and How to Use a Compass

JT and Michael and Al show you how to use a compass with your map.

Graham Thompson: How to use a compass

Outdoor expert Graham Thompson shows you how to use a compass


Map Reading and Compass Use 101.wmv

A very basic map reading and compass video. This goes over the bare bones basics that you will need. If you only know how to go from place to place with a GPS, please watch this video….

Using the USGI Compass – Part 1

An overview of the USGI compass types, the construction and parts, how to use each feature, and demonstrations of how to travel, sight and read and lock in azimuths. When done watching this, immediately jump to part 2 for the full explanation.

How to Navigate Wilderness Areas : How to Use a Compass to Navigate

Wilderness survival experts use compasses to navigate for wilderness survival. Learn how to use a compass to navigate in the wilderness in this free video on wilderness navigation.Expert: John Stewart Bio: John Stewart is an Eagle Scout with the Boy …

Taking a Compass Bearing

Video of how to take a compass bearing and how to follow it across the hills. You can also read through the steps on my blog – Magnetic variation is not mentioned in the video. It is necessary for accurate compass bearings and will be cov…


I had some fool tell me I was just trying to hate on the two Michaels – Dutch and Patriotspace – so I thought I would show you what MY COMPASSES here in Arizona are reading. I appreciate the vids they display and this is no disrespect to them whatsoe…

Nathan Kingerlee explains how to use a compass and a map to navigate

Nathan Kingerlee explains how to use a compass and a map to navigate

Orienteering Part 2 How To Use a Directional Compass

Mr. Bill Troop 73 Alameda teaches orienteering to Boy Scouts

Basic Map Reading: Direction, Orientation, And Location With A Compass pt1-2 1966 US Army 15min

video for embedding at “Features and use of lensatic compass in map orientation, in finding direction and location, and in land navigation, by day and night.” US Army training film TF5-3721 Basic Map Reading Part IV Public domai…

Teaching : How to Teach Young Children to Use the Compass

Teach young children to use a compass by first explaining what a compass is used for and showing them the four basic geographic directions. Observe more tips on how to teach young children to use a compass from an elementary teacher in this free vide…

Map Compass 101

Let’s look at the most basic uses of a map style compass and how to use it for simple navigation in the wilderness.

Land Navigation – Lensatic Compass and Map Use

This is the corrected version of my previous, with actually valid information this time. Shows how to use the USGI issue lensatic compass to orient the map, plot a course based on two well-defined positions on a map and set the compass so you can get…
Read The Full Article here

“Without enough wilderness America will change. Democracy, with its myriad personalities and increasing sophistication, must be fibred and vitalized by regular contact with outdoor growths animals, trees, sun warmth and free skies or it will dwindle and pale.” -Walt Whitman

Yes there can be a lot to learning how to use a compass correctly but this really is an important skill and yes I know you love your GPS unit and you have never been lost, not even slightly misplaced ever but whats it going to hurt to pick up one more outdoor skill that might just save you butt one day.

Please share this article with your mates if you think they could do with some helpful advice also :)

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