Author Topic: 13. Orienteering (basic navigation.)  (Read 11283 times)

Offline Derek broussard

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13. Orienteering (basic navigation.)
« on: December 08, 2009, 12:06:26 PM »
* note this is my first instructional thread, There is also quite a bit involved into  orienteering. and will be polished over a couple times.*

 Orienteering as defined by USOF "Orienteering is the sport of navigation with map and compass."  "The object is to run, walk, ski, or  mountain bike to a series of points shown on the map, choosing routes—both on and off trail—that will help you find all the points and get back to the finish in the shortest amount of time." 
 The military calls this land navigation and can be referenced FM 3-25.26.
  Orienteering IMO is a skill/ movement of MN, due to the fact that it is NEEDED to move in an enviroment, and after a due time  you will be able to read the compass in your "head" quite accurately.
  Basic orienteering
       The Map SHOULD be to scale, and updated.  although I have done/seen people navigate great distance on a hand drawn map (sketch map). Best maps to use are topo maps (USGS, military, etc.). 3
    "a topographic map shows the shape of the terrain and detailed features that are not commonly found on other maps. If possible
• Scale – 1:??,000 scale .  scale shows the size relationship of map to earth. bar scale  is used in conjunction with the compass’ ruler to measure distance to be traveled  The normal large scale map is 1:50,000(MIL.)  One grid square will be equal to one kilometer. ANd most orienteering events are held on five-color maps that have 5 meter contour intervals (16.5 feet) and have a scale of 1:15,000 (preferred) or 1:10,000 (1 cm = 100 meters).
• Contour interval – the contour interval is the elevation change between contour lines. Elevation lines show the steepness and shape of the terrain.
• Legend –  shows which symbols are used on the map.
• Magnetic north lines – Point out the parallel lines with small arrows pointing toward magnetic North on the map.
• Colors –
o Blue – water features
o Black – rock features and man-made features
o White – normal, open woods
o Green – thick vegetation, shades & patterns denote type
o Yellow – non-wooded land, shades & patterns denote  Hill,
o  Brown- contour lines

 1 hill: Easy enough, hills are marked by circles within a circle or on most sides. smaller the circles the steeper and higher the elevation.   looking at the picture you will see that the right side  contour lines are much closer then the left. this meens it takes a shorter distance to gain that elevation (steeper)
 2 Valley:  A valley is a stretched out groove in the land, usually formed by streams or rivers. A valley begins with high ground on three sides, and usually has a course of running water through it. If standing in a valley, there is high ground in two opposite directions and a gradual inclination in the other two directions
3 Ridge, A series of connecting hills. usually the easy route.
 4 Saddle, think like a saddle of a horse
5 Depression,   A BIG hole in the ground...  The inward pointing lines show a drop off usually the same hiegth as the contour line,  ie  16.5 ft
6 Draw, water is DRAWN down these, its going to have high vegetation and moisture.
 7 Spur the  sides of a draw
 8 Cliff
 9 cut & 10 fill This is a man made cliff.. usually CUT into the terrain to form a road or train tracks. A fill is the opposite
   • Feature identification—Types of features on an O map:
o Point features – distinct and usually small features, such as boulders, rootstocks and pits.
o Linear features – followable, long features such as trails, fences and streams.
o Contour features—features defined on the map by contour lines such as reentrants, spurs and gullies.

The compass

 Red needle shows north               This compass(and you) is heading west.  NOT NORTH

 Take a Bearing
By simply moving your compass with your body and using the N-E-S-W markings, you can get a good idea which way you are going. This is often all you need from your compass. But, you've probably noticed on your compass, there are also numbers and tiny lines. These represent the 360 degrees in a circle that surrounds you no matter where you are.

When you need to find your way from one particular place to another, you need to use these numbers to find out the bearing to that remote place. The direction you are going is called your heading. Heading and Bearing are pretty much the same thing. The image above is a heading of about 250 degress.

 Now that there is a basic understanding of the tools used for basic orienteering we are ready for how to use them to get to your point.


« Last Edit: December 08, 2009, 08:00:18 PM by Derek Broussard »

Offline Gregg HIPK

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Re: 13. Orienteering (basic navigation.)
« Reply #1 on: December 08, 2009, 04:32:10 PM »
Thanks, Derek!

Offline Derek broussard

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Re: 13. Orienteering (basic navigation.)
« Reply #2 on: December 08, 2009, 08:34:48 PM »
Orientating your map and compass.

1 Lay your map out on a relatively flat, smooth surface.
2 Turn your declination-adjusted compass dial so due North is at the index pointer. (adjust the "shed" so that you compensate for true/ magnetic north)
3 Place your compass on your map with the edge of the baseplate parallel to the north-south meridians on the map. Notice the orienteering lines and direction-of-travel arrow are all parallel with the map lines.
4 Turn the map and compass together until the compass needle is "boxed" in the orienting

Planning your route
To plan your route,

Get oriented with where you are on the map - your current position.
Figure out where on the map you want to go - your destination.
Examine the space between the two points. Look for obstacles such as swamps, lakes, rivers, cliffs, mountains, and such that you may need to go around rather than through or over.
Find the easiest, prettiest, shortest, or in some way best path to your destination - its up to you.
From your starting point, put your compass on your map and Read your Heading for the first leg of your trek by adjusting the orienting lines of the compass with the meridian lines on the map and reading the direction at the index pointer.
Using the map scale, estimate how far this leg will be.
Considering the contour lines and terrain features, estimate how long this leg will take to cover. Remember, going uphill will take longer. Higher elevations will take longer. Having no trail will take longer. Thick forests, large rock fields, sand, ... will take longer.
Record your details on your trek plan and repeat for each leg of your trek.

SH#%^  now where am I??   

Finding Yourself

In order to successfully triangulate, known features must exist on your map. In other words, you must have some idea of where you are or be able to identify a well-known landmark from your viewpoint.
By taking bearings to the distant landmarks, you can plot your current location on your map in this way:

Make sure you have adjusted your compass correctly for declination in this area.
Orient your map so map north is facing true north.
Take a bearing to one landmark. Point the direction of travel arrow at it and turn the compass dial until RED is in the Shed.
Place your compass on the map so that the orienting lines are parallel to the map's north-south meridian lines.
Move your compass so the top end of one edge of its baseplate ends at the landmark, keeping it aligned with the map's meridians.
Draw a line along the edge of your compass from the landmark along the bearing you took. You are somewhere on this line.
Repeat taking a bearing and drawing a line for a second landmark.
Where these two lines intersect is your approximate location.
If you are standing on a known landmark such as a road, river, or ridgeline but don't know where on that landmark you are, a single remote landmark is enough to plot your position. Where your bearing line to the remote landmark and the landmark you are on intersect is where you are - as long as you take accurate readings and transfer them accurately. :-)

  You have just climbed the plateau in the southwest, coming up from the southwest. Using terrain association you think your at one of four spots, but you can see 3 mountains off in the distance towards the north and east.

  you take bearings to the mountains and get:
16 degrees to Mt. Norris
48 degrees to Cache Mountain
112 degrees to Saddle Mountain

Transfer your bearings to the map and find out where they intersect. If you oriented your map, took correct bearings, and transferred them accurately, your map should look close to:

Now you know where you are on the map and in the real world.

this also works for  intersections of roads too. find the bearings  (azimuth) of each road and find the same  intersection on the map.

Getting around  obstacles.

So now we know: how to use a map and compass, Find yourself,  plan a route, and avoid obstacles
« Last Edit: December 09, 2009, 10:28:07 AM by Gregg »

Offline Gregg HIPK

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Re: 13. Orienteering (basic navigation.)
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2009, 10:34:09 AM »
Getting around obstacles... what obstacles? I thought this was parkour ;D


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Re: 13. Orienteering (basic navigation.)
« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2009, 03:46:45 PM »
what are some ideas of where you'd like to do this?  I'm down if it's...
1. Generally safe (not too remote of a location)
2. Could pair up with someone who actually knows what their doing (not me, even after reading that detail info)  I'd eventually like to be self sufficient, but starting off I'd be more comfortable working with/learning from someone who knows what they are doing.

Offline Gregg HIPK

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Re: 13. Orienteering (basic navigation.)
« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2009, 04:47:53 PM »
If you go to Google Maps, you have the option to view terrain - then it gives you a basic topo map. Like anything else, there may be some errors - Cane roads labelled as real roads, old plantation villages still on the map, all sorts of fun stuff.

Pick an area you already know a little bit. It helps if there are a couple obvious landmarks, too. Then try the route planning, triangulation and obstacle avoidance exercises. Or, plan your course to hit as many obstacles as possible. ;D

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