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Finding your way

Discussion in 'Preparedness & Survival' started by Just Jim, Oct 14, 2015.

  1. Just Jim

    Just Jim Well-Known Member

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    Guess the Navy fears the loss of electronic navigation so they are going back to celestial navigation. Can any of you guys do that, find your way without a GPS?
     
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  2. RicInOR

    RicInOR Washington County Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    ... to the bar around the corner.
     
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  3. Caveman Jim

    Caveman Jim West of Oly Springer Slayer 2016 Volunteer

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    I have never had or relied on GPS for navigating, I guess I'm just an old school fool.....;)
     
  4. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I don't know where I am right now :confused:
     
  5. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    In a more serious response, I can do some basic navigation, on land. I'd be lost at sea. But 25 or so years ago, training to get my private pilot's license, we learned using compasses, air charts and ground references. No GPS available at that time. But we were allowed VOR and NDB help.

    If I got dropped in the middle of nowhere with no compass and no map, I don't know how I'd do. I guess figure out the basic compass points with a hopefully visible sun and go the direction I would hope to find help.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015
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  6. AMT

    AMT Vancouver, WA. Gold Supporter Gold Supporter

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    Never for pin-point navigation.

    During the day, the sun rises in the East and sets in the West. Moss grows on the North side of a tree (for the most part).

    At night, the two furthest stars away from the handle of the big dipper point to the North Star.

    ;)
     
  7. erudne

    erudne The Pie Matrix PPL Say Sleeping W/Your Rifle Is A bad Thing? Bronze Supporter

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    When I lived in Australia I was constantly lost because as a west coast guy the ocean was always 'west'. In Oz the ocean is in all directions. I wasn't the only one either, on the Null Arbor Plain PPL would park there cars facing sunset so they would drive in the correct direction come morning, some folks were known to drive in circles there! At home I have a very good sense of direction, I could probably walk to any place w/o a compass or a map.
    what concerns me is that the Navy stopped teaching celestial nav.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2015
  8. Caveman Jim

    Caveman Jim West of Oly Springer Slayer 2016 Volunteer

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    Well how are the hipsters supposed to do their MOS?
    They have to have a computer to do it.... :eek::eek::eek:
     
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  9. Oathkeeper1775

    Oathkeeper1775 Coast Range Well-Known Member

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    Dead-Reconing baby...the only way to go...:D

    1 degree off azimuth is 16 meters of deviation at 1 kilometer.
    East of declination...Grid to Magnetic (-), Magnetic to Grid (+).
    West of declination Grid to Magnetic (+), Magnetic to Grid (-).

    I worked for my first 12 years in the service without a plugger.

    IR Chem-lites and good back-azimuths got me back to the patrol base.
     
  10. powersbj

    powersbj Seattle Area Active Member

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    East is least, we're about 19 deg off true north here?
     
  11. etrain16

    etrain16 Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    That's the number I recall from my training 25 or so years ago. Unless the magnetic north pole has shifted since then - you know, global warming and all that ;)
     
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  12. Stomper

    Stomper Oceania Rising White Is The New Brown Silver Supporter

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    Intersection and resection... try navi in triple canopy jungles in Central America pre-GPS!! Getting a re-supply drop was a REAL mutha!! :eek:

    To this day I'm still a land-nav animal just using a topo-map and lensatic compass.... EMP, or low-battery THAT!! ;)
     
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  13. RicInOR

    RicInOR Washington County Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Back in the day, my Boy Scout troop was doing a clean up at Tryon Creek Park (near Lake Oswego OR)

    We were asked to navigate to an area, they had a nice map - 4ft x 8ft. And we had a Topo, I missed the trail we should have turned on completely.

    Just because you have a map and a compass, doesn't mean you can't get/be lost.

    I was unsuccessful in identifying where I was, so I couldn't properly navigate the patrol to where we were suppose to go.


    It is a good skill set to have. Go some place, break out a topo and determine where you are from the terrain.
     
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  14. AMT

    AMT Vancouver, WA. Gold Supporter Gold Supporter

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    Currently we are about 16-degrees declination. It does change every few years. NOAA has a pretty cool webpage set up where you can type in your location and it will tell you your declination from magnetic North.

    http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/geomag-web/#igrfwmm

    Even playing with the locations Seattle and Portland you can see that it changes a little.
     
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  15. Oathkeeper1775

    Oathkeeper1775 Coast Range Well-Known Member

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    This topic brings back a lot of great memories....here goes another army land-nav story....:oops:

    I was a temporary radio operator for our battalion commander in 1982 or so...in death valley; the captain navigating for our APC was lost in the dark, so the colonel sent me in his jeep (that was following behind us) on a 180 deg azimuth to find a road, mark the odometer and return.

    So his jeep driver took me (a private 1st class at the time) due South, we found the road 15 miles or so, and returned to find the APC and our colonel gone....:eek:

    Having the colonel's map and graphics, we navigated in the dark to the next objective to find the entire battalion waiting for the colonel....they thought I was he... (I was smoking one of his cigars :D), and we (2 privates) led the battalion 10 miles or so into the next staging area (for a live-fire exercise).

    The point is, learning how to calculate road distance on a map, and using the vehicle odometer or a dismounted pace-count (day, night, walk, run, sand, snow, dry, wet) is a highly-valuable asset to have in anyone's land-nav tool box.:rolleyes:
     
  16. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Boy Scouts, Artillary Liaison, yeah, I'm pretty sure I can still land/nav. :)

    Or direct fire! ;) Excellent thread BTW!
     
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  17. CoastRange57

    CoastRange57 Western Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I was doing dead reckoning in the back seat of an Aeronca Champ at 11 years old. The old man handed me all the stuff and made me plot our tracks up and down the Willamette Valley, over to the coast, up to Vernonia, Astoria and a host of other places. I was in Civil Air Patrol and learned extensive map and compass work there,having to navigate out of the Three Sisters Wilderness 5 different times. We had no NDB or omni capabilities in that 1946 classic with no electrical system, so it was maps, compasses and land marks. That 16 degree deviation is what I pretty much worked off of.

    I have probably 12 compasses in back packs, my vehicles. I collected a host of Pittman maps back in my road days and have copies of all adjoining counties in my Explorer, as well as down loaded topo maps, and all my aviation maps of Oregon, Northern CA.

    I love having that skill set and intend on teaching my grand kids it. My boys learned it in the Corps and are very good at it.
     
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  18. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    It's a great thing to teach a kid! I would take my boy out to the more overgrown parks and run him through compass courses! "it's not here, dad!" "Did you set your declination constant, son?" "Uh, no." "Well, we'd better go back and start again!" "Yes sir." LOL!!!
    Since every cashe held anything from a quarter to five dollars he was verrry motivated! :D
     
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  19. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I always wanted to see the Null Arbor! It must seem weird in the extreme!
     
  20. maxisback

    maxisback Western Washington Member

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    Magnetic deviation!?:confused: Heck, just use a sun compass- true north, no declination :D