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Friday, July 17, 2009

If you’re lost in the outdoors - Part 3 (Night Travel)

If you’re lost in the outdoors - Part 3 (Night Travel)
 
So if you don’t have a compass, how do you figure out direction of travel during the nighttime? Here’s 4 different methods for you to try:
 
Cresent Moon: Draw a line from tip to tip in a straight line and where the line hits the horizon is roughly South.
Big DipperImage via Wikipedia

 
Big Dipper Method: Draw a straight line through the two stars that make up the end of the pot (opposite the handle) and continue this line away from the opening of the pot until it intersects a star known as “Polaris” (the North Star) and you have North.
 
Latitude Method: Look at the North Star and hold your 1st arm straight out and parallel with the horizon, now point your 2nd arm straight at the North Star. The angle between your arms is roughly the degrees latitude (i.e. 45 degrees).
 
Latitude Stick Method: Put a vertical stick in the ground, align a 2nd stick with the 1st stick and the North Star, then place it vertical in the ground. Now, slide your thumb and eye down the 2nd stick until the North Star is aligned with the tip of the 1st stick. Mark the spot and measure the angle from a parallel line with the ground and the line you created from the tip of the 1st stick to the spot you marked on the 2nd stick. This is your latitude and the 2 sticks are pointing in a North/South line, which means perpendicular to this line is the Easy/West line.


See you on the trail,
--Greg

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