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Thread: Land Navigation 101

  1. #1

    Land Navigation 101

    INTRODUCTION: Land Navigation 101

    Within this section, I will break down the various areas of Land Navigation into separate tasks.
    This is a vast subject full of little things that all build upon and depend upon each other for overall success.

    Each "post" within this thread will cover a different task.
    The tasks are numerous.
    It will take me some considerable time to segregate and post it all.
    Perhaps one or two lessons a day at best maybe.

    Therefore, this will not be for members discussion and members postings within (this) sticky.

    Please use the matching forum thread for questions, statements, anything you'd like me add, anything you don't understand, and even pointing out any mistakes I myself may have made.
    Together, we can put together a pretty good presentation here.

    Disclaimer: The information and pictures in this thread have been borrowed from "multiple" sources. I do not claim in any way what so ever to be the sole author of this content.
    Last edited by swampdragon; 07-14-2010 at 10:44 PM.

  2. #2
    Determine a Magnetic Azimuth Using a Lensatic Compass

    1. Determine the correct magnetic azimuth to the designated point within 3 degrees using the compass-to-cheek method, or within 10 degrees using the center-hold method.

    a. The floating dial is used to determine the direction in which you are pointing your compass.

    b. The outer, "black" ring of numbers and tick marks is used for finding direction in mils.

    Figure 5-25. Lensatic compass.

    Figure 5-26. Lensatic compass floating dial.

    c. The inner, "red" ring of numbers and tick marks is used for finding direction in degrees.

    (1) There are 360 degrees or 6,400 mils in a circle. These are marked with a tick mark every 5 degrees and 20 mils. However, not every tick mark is numbered. You will have to determine the number for these lines using the numbers that are shown.

    (2) To read direction, point the compass in the direction you want to go or want to determine.

    (3) Look beneath the index line on the outer glass cover and estimate to the nearest degree or 10 mils the position of the index line over the (red or black) scale.

    (4) Be careful to hold the compass still so that the dial remains stationary while you are reading the scale.

    (5) In Figure 5-26, the readings are 312 degrees (red scale) and 5,500 mils (black scale).

    (6) If you understand these readings and can apply either of the holding and sighting techniques of shooting an azimuth, you will be proficient in performing this task.

    2. Shoot an azimuth.

    a. Use your compass to determine or follow an azimuth. The arrow on the compass points toward magnetic north. The arrow is also attracted by any mass of metal-a truck, your rifle, your helmet, and even electrical power lines. Thus, be sure you use your compass away from metal objects so it will not give a wrong reading.

    b. The lensatic compass must always be held level and firm when sighting on an object and reading an azimuth.

    c. There are two methods of holding the lensatic compass and sighting.

    (1) Compass-to-cheek method (Figure 5-27). To use this method-

    (a) Open the cover to a 90-degree angle to the base. Position the eyepiece at a 45-degree angle to the base.

    (b) Place your thumb through the thumb loop, form a steady base with your third and fourth fingers, and extend your index finger along the side of the compass base.

    (c) Place the hand holding the compass into the palm of the other hand.

    Figure 5-27. Compass-to-cheek method.

    (d) Bring both hands up to the face and position the thumb that is through the thumb loop against the cheekbone.

    (e) Look through the lens of the eyepiece. If the dial is not in focus, move the eyepiece up or down until the dial is in focus.

    (f) Align the sighting slot of the eyepiece with the sighting wire in the cover on the point to which the azimuth is being determined. Look through the lens of the eyepiece and read the azimuth under the index line.

    (2) Center-hold method (Figure 5-28). Use this method only when a precise direction is not required:

    (a) Open the compass so that the cover forms a straight edge with the base. The lens of the compass is moved out of the way.

    Figure 5-28. Center-hold method.

    (b) Place your thumb through the thumb loop, form a steady base with your third and fourth fingers, and extend your index finger along the side of the compass.

    (c) Place the thumb of the other hand between the eyepiece and the lens, extend the index finger along the remaining side of the compass, wrap the remaining fingers around the fingers of the other hand, and pull your elbows firmly into your sides. This will place the compass between your chin and your belt.

    (d) To measure an azimuth, turn your entire body toward the object and point the compass cover directly at the object. Look down and read the azimuth from beneath the fixed black index line. This method can be used at night.

    (e) To keep from going in circles when you are land navigating, stop occasionally to check the azimuth along which you are moving. Also, you can move from object to object along your path by shooting an azimuth to each object and then moving to that object. Repeating this process while you navigate should keep you straight.

    ************************************************** ************************************************** ************************************************** ******

    Personal Observations:

    When training soldiers, I've noticed a few things over the years that people consistently do wrong:

    1) Not holding the compass level. This causes the dial to drag and stop rotating. Your readings will be wrong.

    2) Trying to use the compass with the eye piece folded to far toward the closed position. This also causes the dial to drag and lock up.

    3) Failing to realize that you aim the compass similar to aiming a weapon.
    You must use the rear sight notch above the lens and center the front aiming sight wire in the rear notch.
    The center-hold method is fine for short distance.
    But using your eye-piece and sight wire a extremely more accurate.

    4) Trying to aim the compass at an empty field of nothing when there are terrain features to aim at and then walk to.

    5) Failing to double and even triple check your readings to make sure you are not reading it wrong.

    6) Not using the bezel ring and small luminous line when it is such a simple thing to do and make life 90% easier.
    I wonder how many people have no idea what that spinning ring on their compass is even for?
    Last edited by swampdragon; 07-14-2010 at 11:05 PM.

  3. #3
    Handling A Compass


    Compasses are delicate instruments and should be cared for accordingly.

    a. Inspection. A detailed inspection is required when first obtaining and using a compass. One of the most important parts to check is the floating dial, which contains the magnetic needle. The user must also make sure the sighting wire is straight, the glass and crystal parts are not broken, the numbers on the dial are readable, and most important, that the dial does not stick.

    b. Effects of Metal and Electricity. Metal objects and electrical sources can affect the performance of a compass. However, nonmagnetic metals and alloys do not affect compass readings. The following separation distances are suggested to ensure proper functioning of a compass:

    High-tension power lines ................................................. 55 meters.

    Field gun, truck, or tank .................................................. 18 meters.

    Telegraph or telephone wires and barbed wire ................ 10 meters.

    Machine gun .................................................. ................. 2 meters.

    Steel helmet or rifle .................................................. ........ 1/2 meter.

    c. Accuracy. A compass in good working condition is very accurate. However, a compass has to be checked periodically on a known line of direction, such as a surveyed azimuth using a declination station. Compasses with more than 3 + variation should not be used.

    d. Protection. If traveling with the compass unfolded, make sure the rear sight is fully folded down onto the bezel ring. This will lock the floating dial and prevent vibration, as well as protect the crystal and rear sight from damage.USING A COMPASS

    Magnetic azimuths are determined with the use of magnetic instruments, such as lensatic and M2 compasses. The techniques employed when using the lensatic compass are as follows:

    a. Using the Centerhold Technique. First, open the compass to its fullest so that the cover forms a straightedge with the base. Move the lens (rear sight) to the rearmost position, allowing the dial to float freely. Next, place your thumb through the thumb loop, form a steady base with your third and fourth fingers, and extend your index finger along the side of the compass. Place the thumb of the other hand between the lens (rear sight) and the bezel ring; extend the index finger along the remaining side of the compass, and the remaining fingers around the fingers of the other hand. Pull your elbows firmly into your sides; this will place the compass between your chin and your belt. To measure an azimuth, simply turn your entire body toward the object, pointing the compass cover directly at the object. Once you are pointing at the object, look down and read the azimuth from beneath the fixed black index line. This preferred method offers the following advantages over the sighting technique:

    (1) It is faster and easier to use.

    (2) It can be used under all conditions of visibility.

    (3) It can be used when navigating over any type of terrain.

    (4) It can be used without putting down the rifle; however, the rifle must be slung well back over either shoulder.

    (5) It can be used without removing eyeglasses.

    b. Using the Compass-to-Cheek Technique. Fold the cover of the compass containing the sighting wire to a vertical position; then fold the rear sight slightly forward. Look through the rear-sight slot and align the front-sight hairline with the desired object in the distance. Then glance down at the dial through the eye lens to read the azimuth.

    NOTE: The compass-to-cheek technique is used almost exclusively for sighting, and it is the best technique for this purpose.
    Last edited by swampdragon; 07-14-2010 at 08:51 PM.

  4. #4
    Using Your Bezel Ring: The Greatest & Simplest Tool That Nobody Knows How to Use

    There are (3) important little lines on your compass that are completely separate from the numbers and tick marks that indicate mils or degrees around your dial.
    Only (1) of them gets used most often. And that would be the "Index" line.
    The other (2) are often looked at with total confusion.
    So, I find it important to briefly explain all (3) of these lines; how and why they exist; and how actually USING THEM will save you a lot of headaches and a LOT of time.

    The (3) lines are:
    a) Index Line (solid black)
    b) Needle Marker (luminescent or tritium)
    c) Bezel Marker (luminescent or tritium)

    Looking at the pictures below, you can see all (3) lines.

    The "Index Line" is exactly that. Your index.
    That is the long thin black line you look at that shows you what degrees your compass is currently pointing at.

    The "Index" line never moves.
    If you change direction, your dial will move, and you'll just have a new reading in degrees or mils under your "Index" line.
    This is how all compasses work, and everybody understands this part.
    Simple? Simple.

    Moving on.......

    Hey? What about the luminescent mark on the needle where it points North?
    Hey? What about the luminescent mark on that spinney ring bezel ring doo-dad?
    What's that for?

    OK. Here ya go, and it's really easy.

    Lets say you want to go just a few degrees off of due West for example like in the picture above.
    All you have to do is this:

    a) Hold your compass out like you would normally use it and get it on the degrees/azimuth you want.
    b) Spin the Bezel Ring until the little luminescent mark moves around and lines up perfectly with the "other" little luminescent mark at the end of your North pointing needle.
    c) That's it!

    Now...instead of constantly struggling to re-check those tiny little numbers on your dial every so often....all you have to do is just make sure that your North needle stays lined up with the Bezel ring mark where you set it. That's it. Your compass will stay on the degrees you want until to move the Bezel ring to some new position.
    Last edited by swampdragon; 07-14-2010 at 08:49 PM.

  5. #5
    How to use Pace Count to measure Ground Distance

    Now that you should have a reasonable idea of how your compass works, you are ready to go someplace now.
    Not before you know your Pace Count!

    Using your compass to go in the correct direction is great. does you no good if you have no idea how far you have walked.
    Did you go too far and miss your objective?
    Have you stopped short?
    You can answer this question for yourself "if" you know your Pace Count.

    A pace is equal to one natural step, about 30 inches long. (give or take)

    One way to measure ground distance is the pace count. A pace is equal to one natural step, about 30 inches long. To accurately use the pace count method, you must know how many paces it takes you to walk 100 meters. To determine this, you must walk an accurately measured course and count the number of paces you take. A pace course can be as short as 100 meters or as long as 600 meters. The pace course, regardless of length, must be on similar terrain to that you will be walking over. It does no good to walk a course on flat terrain and then try to use that pace count on hilly terrain. To determine your pace count on a 600-meter course, count the paces it takes you to walk the 600 meters, then divide the total paces by 6. The answer will give you the average paces it takes you to walk 100 meters. It is important that each person who navigates while dismounted knows his pace count.

    (1) There are many methods to keep track of the distance traveled when using the pace count. Some of these methods are: put a pebble in your pocket every time you have walked 100 meters according to your pace count; tie knots in a string; or put marks in a notebook. Do not try to remember the count; always use one of these methods or design your own method.

    (2) Certain conditions affect your pace count in the field, and you must allow for them by making adjustments.

    (a) Slopes. Your pace lengthens on a down-slope and shortens on an upgrade. Keeping this in mind, if it normally takes you 120 paces to walk 100 meters, your pace count may increase to 130 or more when walking up a slope.

    (b) Winds. A head wind shortens the pace and a tail wind increases it.

    (c) Surfaces. Sand, gravel, mud, snow, and similar surface materials tend to shorten the pace.

    (d) Elements. Falling snow, rain, or ice cause the pace to be reduced in length.

    (e) Clothing. Excess clothing and boots with poor traction affect the pace length.

    (f) Visibility. Poor visibility, such as in fog, rain, or darkness, will shorten your pace.

    Another little gizmo that helps with Pace Count (if you just don't really feel like placing rocks in your pocket) is Ranger Beads.
    They are cheap. They are easy to find. They are easy to use.

    Light weight and strong. It is based on the your personal pace count.
    Start off with the right foot and every time your left foot hits the ground you have traveled 1 pace.
    Everyone's pace is different but the average pace is 60", so ...30" with one foot x 2 = 60" traveled = 1 pace. (yours may vary)

    You take 60" X about 66 paces = 330 ft, which is close to 100 meters. 100 meters is approx. 328.0839895' ft.
    Find out what your actual pace count is to 100 meters and do it 3 or 4 times to get an average.
    Your pace count may be more or less with different terrain. Steep slopes, holes, valleys etc. will cause you to take more paces to go 100 meters, so allow about 10% error on your pace count if you are on these terrains instead of flat ground travel.

    To attach the pace-counter you pass the loop end through your top button hole and pull the beaded end through the exposed loop.
    Pull both sets of beads up as far as possible.

    After pacing off 100 meters, 66 paces for example with your left foot, pull down the first bead on the line with 9 beads.
    Continue walking until you travel another 100 meters, pull another bead down from the line with 8 beads left. ect. until all 9 beads are down.
    Walk another 100 meters and you have traveled 1000 meters or 1 KM.
    Pull down a bead from the line with 4 beads and reset the line with 9 beads by pulling them back up.

    When all the beads are pulled down at (4,900 meters traveled), pace off another 100 meters and pull all the beads up to mark 5,000 meters or 5 KM., and start again.
    With time and practice, you will be a pro at it and will be sure of your pace count day or night.

    The main thing to remember here is that EVERYBODY has a DIFFERENT Pace Count.
    It is very important that YOU establish YOURS while walking a known distance.
    The numbers used above are for reference only.
    YOURS may not be the same.
    Last edited by swampdragon; 07-14-2010 at 08:48 PM.

  6. #6
    Understanding Magnetic Declination

    Location of Magnetic North...

    Magnetic north is only an approximation for true north, the difference between them varies across the country and across the world by latitude and longitude because the magnetic mass that your compass needle points to is not located exactly at the north pole. It is located today in Canadian Arctic waters and is in fact a molten magnetic mass that moves slowly over time under the earths crust, it also moves around slightly even within a day... You can ignore the daily movements since they are small and on average the location is 'stable', you can usually also ignore the changes over time - unless you have a very old map.

    In the last century the position of magnetic north has moved about 680 miles. From Arizona it has been moving mostly away from us and generally closer to the actual north pole. At the moment its moving about 25 miles/ year. On its current trajectory and speed it will end up in Siberia in about 50 years - but its path & rate is unpredictable so it's likely to veer before then.

    Magnetic North & Declination:

    This difference between different 'Norths' is called Declination. The difference between True North and Magnetic North is known as the Magnetic Declination Angle (often referred to as simply Declination). Magnetic declination angles east of true north are considered positive while magnetic declinations west of true north are considered negative - they are usually marked as positive or negative values on the map's declination key.

    In Phoenix, AZ magnetic north is to the east of true north by about 11 degrees (so the magnetic declination angle is +11 degrees).

    So Magnetic North is a variable approximation for True North and Grid North although closer is also still only an approximation for True North. You will see that the magnetic north on the map is usually many degrees offset from true north.

    Look for the Declination Legend indicating True North (STAR/TN/N' - the direction to the actual north pole), Magnetic North ('x/MN' - where your compass needle points) and Grid North ('o/GN' - the vertical grid lines on the map).

    Magnetic Declination

    Example of a Declination Legend at the bottom of a USGS Map. GN applies accurately to the middle of the sheet. (for MN note the date is given)

    True North (N) is shown as a STAR.

    Note that the Grid-Magnetic Declination Angle (MN-GN) is significant while the Convergence Angle (GN-N) is usually tiny - almost insignificant
    (So MN-GN MN-N)

    Usually MN-GN is drawn to scale while the GN-N usually is not.

    You can calculate the declination for a given location using an on-line declination calculator. A line called the 'Agonic Line' runs through the mid-west USA (Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Mississippi) where the magnetic declination angle is zero... places on this line are the easiest places of all to use a map and compass together! To the east of this line magnetic declinations are negative (magnetic north is west of true north) and to the west of this line magnetic declinations are positive (magnetic north is east of true north). There is of course a similar line on the other side of the earth that runs through Russia.

    2004 Declination Map

    The angle you care about for translation between a Map and compass is the Grid-Magnetic Declination Angle - the difference between grid north marked on this particular map and the magnetic north shown on your compass (some people simply call this Grid Declination). These angles are marked on the map - usually the grid/true difference is very small and effectively almost negligible compared to the true/magnetic difference that is often quite significant - maybe as much as 30 degrees in some part of the USA.

    To translate accurate readings between a map & compass you must allow for the Grid-Magnetic Declination Angle that applies in this particular area - the map will directly tell you the amount that applies in degrees, on the declination key. Usually although 2 angles are shown: the Convergence Angle and the Grid-Magnetic Declination Angle - you only care about the Grid-Magnetic Declination Angle.

    Some (expensive) compasses allow for a Declination adjustment to be set that adjusts the compass reading to Grid North. Note if your compass has this declination feature you may not be able to use it as a protractor on the map once it is adjusted (check the instructions) and may then need a separate protractor for map bearing measurements.

    Without this feature you need to do the adjustment yourself by adding or subtracting the Grid Magnetic Declination Angle in degrees, or by marking your compass to convert it to Grid North readings.

    ************************************************** ************************************************** ************************************************** ************************

    So in a nut shell, what the hell does all this REALLY mean to YOU?
    It's really a lot less complicated than it seems.
    All it means is this:

    If you are at Point "A" on your map...and you want to get to Point "B"....
    You use your protractor, or your compass, to figure out what degrees (ON THE MAP) that Point "B" is from your current location "A".

    "Then," depending on where you are in the world at the time...
    You either add or subtract a few degrees so that your compass will get you there.

    That's it really.
    Last edited by swampdragon; 07-14-2010 at 08:46 PM.

  7. #7
    Using a Map with a Compass

    A map is necessary in wilderness navigation, but it’s not very useful without a compass to orient yourself. Once you establish the position on the map where you are (Start) and the point where you’re going to stop (Finish), the line between them is your path (azimuth). You can take your straight-edge ruler and lightly sketch this path on your map. If you have a protractor, you can also measure the compass bearing from the angle of your new line and the map’s vertical north line. If not, don’t worry – there’s another way.

    Place your compass on the map and turn the map until the north arrow on the map lines up with the with the north arrow on the compass (both map and compass should be on a level and flat surface). If you place your compass at the start of your path, and the north arrow on the compass lines up with the vertical grid-north lines on the map, you should be able to look down and see what direction your path is with respect to your compass bearing. Look at the bearing on the compass that lines up with the direction of your path – this is your azimuth. In the picture below, the azimuth is approximately 330 degrees.

    Orienting a Compass with Map

    Now that you have your azimuth, you’ll want to correct it for declination. Declination is the angle between magnetic north and geographic north. Declination varies by geographic region and usually noted on topographic maps. As an example, the northeastern states of the US have a declination correction of 10-18 degrees, but the states along the Mississippi River have a declination near zero. To correct for declination you rotate the compass on your map to re-orient the north arrow with magnetic north. Many maps will show the magnetic north arrow and geographic north arrows together with the angle defined between them.

    When you start your hike, take your compass and orient yourself and the map so that your facing your azimuth (direction of your path). If there’s no visible trail to follow, you’ll want to use your compass to get a landmark to walk towards, at which point you’ll take another bearing to the next landmark. Wilderness navigation can get tricky in thick vegetation or at night and will require patience and multiple bearing checks. Before you depart, remember your back azimuth (your path minus 180 degrees), as this is the bearing you’ll want to take back to the start.
    Last edited by swampdragon; 07-14-2010 at 08:43 PM.

  8. #8
    Field-Expedient Direction Finding: Part I


    The earth's relationship to the sun can help you to determine direction on earth. The sun always rises in the east and sets in the west, but not exactly due east or due west. There is also some seasonal variation. In the northern hemisphere, the sun will be due south when at its highest point in the sky, or when an object casts no appreciable shadow. In the southern hemisphere, this same noonday sun will mark due north. In the northern hemisphere, shadows will move clockwise. Shadows will move counterclockwise in the southern hemisphere. With practice, you can use shadows to determine both direction and time of day. The shadow methods used for direction finding are the shadow-tip and watch methods.
    Shadow-Tip Methods

    In the first shadow-tip method, find a straight stick 1 meter long, and a level spot free of brush on which the stick will cast a definite shadow. This method is simple and accurate and consists of four steps:

    * Step 1. Place the stick or branch into the ground at a level spot where it will cast a distinctive shadow. Mark the shadow's tip with a stone, twig, or other means. This first shadow mark is always west--everywhere on earth.

    * Step 2. Wait 10 to 15 minutes until the shadow tip moves a few centimeters. Mark the shadow tip's new position in the same way as the first.

    * Step 3. Draw a straight line through the two marks to obtain an approximate east-west line.

    * Step 4. Stand with the first mark (west) to your left and the second mark to your right--you are now facing north. This fact is true everywhere on earth.

    An alternate method is more accurate but requires more time. Set up your shadow stick and mark the first shadow in the morning. Use a piece of string to draw a clean arc through this mark and around the stick. At midday, the shadow will shrink and disappear. In the afternoon, it will lengthen again and at the point where it touches the arc, make a second mark. Draw a line through the two marks to get an accurate east-west line.

  9. #9
    Field-Expedient Direction Finding: Part II


    Ever been in a situation where you wished you had a compass with you? Maybe not, but you may someday. Maybe you've gotten a little lost while taking a ride on a country road, you know the highway is to the east somewhere, but which way is east? Well, you don't need a compass as long as you have an analog watch with you.

    An analog watch can be used as a make-shift compass during daylight hours. Although geographic location and seasonal variances will keep you from getting a perfect reading, this method will help you get a good bearing.

    Because the sun is almost always south of you if you are in the northern hemisphere, and almost always north of you while in the southern hemisphere, slightly different methods need to be used depending on what hemisphere you are in.

    Method for Northern Hemisphere.
    To find south while in the northern hemisphere. Hold the watch so it's parallel to the ground. Rotate the watch so that the hour hand is pointing to the sun. Find the point on the watch face that is halfway between the hour hand position and the 12 o'clock position on the watch. This point is south.

    Note: During daylight savings time you may want to use the 1 o'clock position to get a more accurate bearing.

    Method for Southern Hemisphere.
    To find north while you are in the southern hemisphere. Hold the watch parallel to the ground. Point the 12 o'clock position so it is pointed at the sun. The point half-way between the hour hand and the 12 o'clock position will be north.

    Note: During daylight savings time you may want to use the 1 o'clock position to get a more accurate bearing.

  10. #10
    Field-Expedient Direction Finding: Part III


    Your location in the Northern or Southern Hemisphere determines which constellation you use to determine your north or south direction.
    The Northern Sky

    The main constellations to learn are the Ursa Major, also known as the Big Dipper or the Plow, and Cassiopeia (Figure 18-3). Neither of these constellations ever sets. They are always visible on a clear night. Use them to locate Polaris, also known as the polestar or the North Star. The North Star forms part of the Little Dipper handle and can be confused with the Big Dipper. Prevent confusion by using both the Big Dipper and Cassiopeia together. The Big Dipper and Cassiopeia are always directly opposite each. other and rotate counterclockwise around Polaris, with Polaris in the center. The Big Dipper is a seven star constellation in the shape of a dipper. The two stars forming the outer lip of this dipper are the "pointer stars" because they point to the North Star. Mentally draw a line from the outer bottom star to the outer top star of the Big Dipper's bucket. Extend this line about five times the distance between the pointer stars. You will find the North Star along this line.

    Cassiopeia has five stars that form a shape like a "W" on its side. The North Star is straight out from Cassiopeia's center star.

    After locating the North Star, locate the North Pole or true north by drawing an imaginary line directly to the earth.
    The Southern Sky

    Because there is no star bright enough to be easily recognized near the south celestial pole, a constellation known as the Southern Cross is used as a signpost to the South (Figure 18-4). The Southern Cross or Crux has five stars. Its four brightest stars form a cross that tilts to one side. The two stars that make up the cross's long axis are the pointer stars. To determine south, imagine a distance five times the distance between These stars and the point where this imaginary line ends is in the general direction of south. Look down to the horizon from this imaginary point and select a landmark to steer by. In a static survival situation, you can fix this location in daylight if you drive stakes in the ground at night to point the way.

    ************************************************** ************************************************** ****************************


    Because the moon has no light of its own, we can only see it when it reflects the sun's light. As it orbits the earth on its 28-day circuit, the shape of the reflected light varies according to its position. We say there is a new moon or no moon when it is on the opposite side of the earth from the sun. Then, as it moves away from the earth's shadow, it begins to reflect light from its right side and waxes to become a full moon before waning, or losing shape, to appear as a sliver on the left side. You can use this information to identify direction.

    If the moon rises before the sun has set, the illuminated side will be the west.
    If the moon rises after midnight, the illuminated side will be the east.
    This obvious discovery provides us with a rough east-west reference during the night.

  11. #11
    Team Gunsnet Silver 02/14 - Moderator recon's Avatar

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    Great info.
    Last edited by recon; 02-15-2020 at 09:17 AM.
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  12. #12
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    Using the Compass-to-Cheek Technique. Fold the cover of the compass containing the sighting wire to a vertical position; then fold the rear sight slightly forward. Look through the rear-sight slot and align the front-sight hairline with the desired object in the distance. Then glance down at the dial through the eye lens to read the azimuth.
    Last edited by slamfire51; 04-20-2011 at 10:14 AM.

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  14. #14
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