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Map and Compass training - June

Map and Compass training - June

Wed 19th June 2013

For the second Map and Compass course for 2013 something unusual happened – the sun was shining again. The first half of the day we settled into the Parish Hall to learn about maps, compasses and basic navigation techniques before venturing outside in to the lovely weather. Shepherds Walks supplied us with new compasses and very handy map extracts of the area.

Most people this time had a basic idea of the topic and were taking part to give themselves more confidence when walking without leaders or when on their own. There are always a few surprises in store for people like realising there is more than one ‘North’ and some of them don’t stay still!

The bulk of the afternoon was about taking a journey through Rothbury and around the Carrigeways to practice the classroom skills. Just to see if everyone was paying attention pairs led short sections of the route for the group. Along the way we saw features we might normally walk past like signs of how maps were originally made, ancient earthworks and features that exist on the grounds but don’t appear on the map and vice versa.

Up on the carriageways we practiced walking on compass bearings, identifying features in the landscape and testing our pacing to see what happens when you try it for real. We also learnt a new language – all about how to find our way using collecting features, handrails and attackpoints.

We finished our journey in the late afternoon sun above Rothbury appropriately next to a Bronze Age standing stone. Paul said he was coming here on a regular basis to secretly pay homage to the rain and mist deity for the more advanced map and compass course in October.

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