Map and Compass 101 with TRTA
Basic Map and Compass Course in Lake Tahoe
Join Tahoe Rim Trail Association for a day in the classroom and field to learn basic map and compass skills. Technology like a personal GPS device has probably surpassed John Muir’s wildest dreams but that doesn’t mean John Muir’s method of navigation is obsolete. In fact, knowing how to use a map and compass can save your life.
This course will teach you one of the most basic and essential outdoor skills- navigation without relying on a battery. Knowing how to use a map and compass will greatly reduce your chances of getting lost. Maps have stood the test of time and are still pertinent today. The Babylonian’s created and used one of the oldest surviving maps to this day and the Chinese Han Dynasty used magnetic compasses as early as 206 BC. The TRTA’s Director of Trail Operations used his map and compass skills just recently to help layout a new section of trail. The birth of the smart phone and personal global positioning systems (GPS) have not outdated the centuries old skill of navigation by map and compass. The earth’s magnetic field will never run out of battery.
Through a mixture of indoor and hands-on, outdoor settings, learning objectives include:
Map basics- nomenclature, contour lines, reference lines, direction of slope
Compass basics- magnetic declination, bearings in the field, back bearings, bearings on a map
Orienteering- orientating a map and finding one’s position (area)
Navigating- using intermediate objects, getting around obstructions, aiming off
In the event that the TRTA needs to reschedule this course due to force majeure, it will be held on the Contingency Date: February 16. If you cannot attend the contingency date, the same cancellation policy applies and you will be reimbursed your program fee minus $10. If the TRTA deems it necessary to also cancel the Contingency Date, you will receive a full refund.