A compass is an indispensable thing in a serious tourist trip. With this useful device, equipped with a magnetic needle, the traveler can choose the right direction of travel without fear of getting lost in unfamiliar terrain. To prevent the compass from becoming a useless accessory, you need to be able to use it correctly.
What is a compass for?
People get out into nature quite often. For some, this is an opportunity to visit the forest in search of mushrooms and berries. Others love hiking in unexplored places. Untouched nature, fresh air, guitar songs by the fire and other attributes of romance, however, are good only when travelers feel confident in the forest. And for this you need to be able to navigate in unfamiliar places.
A person in a strange city usually does not have problems with orientation on the terrain. In a large metropolis, it is quite easy to determine your location. Elements of urban infrastructure, signs with the names of streets or metro stations, and other information signs will help the tourist in this. To feel confident, it is often enough to have the most general map of the city at hand.
It's another matter if you find yourself in nature. There are no usual attributes of civilization here, and more often than not there is no one to ask for directions. And then the compass comes to the rescue. It is precisely the device with which you can relatively easily navigate in the field, in the mountains or in the forest, that is, where the wind of wanderings has thrown you. This compact device, equipped with a circular scale and a magnetized arrow, allows a trained tourist to confidently determine the sides of the horizon and outline the correct direction of travel.
How to use the compass
To put the compass on alert, remove it from the holder and set it on a horizontal plane. At the same time, the magnetized arrow will free itself and begin to oscillate, after which it will establish itself motionless, pointing with the blue end to the north, and with the red end to the south. Now you need to turn the body of the device so that the zero on the dial coincides with the end of the arrow pointing to the north.
Please note that it is necessary to start orienteering not at the moment when you find yourself in a hopeless situation and get lost, but at the moment you start moving in unfamiliar terrain. Knowing the location of the sides of the horizon at the moment of entering the forest, you can immediately understand in which direction you will move. Of course, you will need to return in the opposite direction.
Using the marks on the compass dial, you can choose any direction of travel for yourself. In order not to get lost in the campaign, it will only be necessary to remember or write down the azimuth to a noticeable landmark marked on the map or clearly visible on the ground. Azimuth is the angle, expressed in degrees, between north and toward the feature you select. This angle, which can take values from 0 to 360 degrees, is measured clockwise.
If you change direction along the way, you should each time measure a new azimuth using the compass, drawing a broken line on the map or movement pattern. To master the compass and map, it is advisable to conduct one or two field exercises in an area with which you are relatively familiar. This skill, combined with a compass, will help you navigate without much difficulty where no human has stepped foot.