Author Topic: Map reading  (Read 804 times)


  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 217
Re: Map reading
« Reply #15 on: 17:40:08, 30/03/21 »
I was thinking about buying a GPS device as I donít trust my phones battery. I need to hold that off as Iíve spent a small fortune recently getting my basic kit together.
A decent power pack to recharge your phone is a sight cheaper than a handheld GPS receiver and should be part of the standard kit in your walking rucksack O0   It would also be worth you googling to the various sites that give you advice on how to set up your phone for minimal power usage whist out walking. That said, I prefer to keep my electronic communication and navigation tools separate.

Another suggestion about a nav course is to reach out to Kent Search & Rescue SAR teams often run such courses for new members and you might be able to get onto one of those?

I will also offer a suggestion that I have made a few times here (and no, I am not on commission!) regarding the best book on navigation you will ever read (classic map & compass skills and GPS) which is the Ultimate Navigation Manual by Lyle Brotherton - without a shadow of a doubt this will be the best £12 you ever spend on this subject, after buying a compass and map!

It is defunct now (closed in 2017), but all the posts on the MicroNavigation Forum are preserved and it is an excellent resource on all aspects of navigation including GPS use:


  • New Member
  • *
  • Posts: 22
Re: Map reading
« Reply #16 on: 21:40:01, 30/03/21 »
Eyelet thatís a great idea about KSAR that is something that I would be interested in joining. I like what they do donít know why I havenít considered this before. My work supports time off for charity volunteering as well. So they really could be a win win for myself and the organisation.

I will have a look at purchasing that book also .


  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2288
Re: Map reading
« Reply #17 on: 22:11:30, 30/03/21 »

I was thinking about buying a GPS device as I donít trust my phones battery. I need to hold that off as Iíve spent a small fortune recently getting my basic kit together.

Your doing the right thing learning the old ways first.  GPS is a marvellous thing, do get one, at least a good phone app. Too easy to use though, which can cause complacency in a novice navigator and there is always the slight possibility.  That it will let you down just when you need it.  Learning to map read with a paper map and compass, will mean you understand better what the GPS is interpreting.  Rather than just following blindly, like a few people I know.  ;)


  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7972
Re: Map reading
« Reply #18 on: 23:21:53, 30/03/21 »
To be fair, you can also map read with GPS or phone, it is just a very small view of the map!  As I said, this makes you more aware of the finer points of detail in the map but you lose the bigger picture.   These days, because I have a phone and a gps, I rarely carry a map unless I am in wild country when replanning may need something bigger than a screen.  Before I set off, I make sure I have downloaded the map so I never need a data connection or phone signal while I am out.  Usually I will have multiple copies of different types of map- OS and Cachemap in my Garmin, an OS map on my phone and a ViewRanger Landscape map also in my phone.  At one time I used to print off A4 segments of the OS map to carry with me but since ViewRanger and the OS app matured, I dont bother anymore even on areas like Dartmoor. 

To be honest I don't miss the paper map. and I certainly don't miss the map case or stopping to get the map out.  I cannot remember the last time I reached for one in anger while I was out.  This will not be for everybody.  I am a planner - it is part of the pleasure for me and oddly it gives me more freedom when I am walking.  The preparation means I have a good idea where I am going so I just glance very occasionally at the screen to confirm I am on the right track, for example at a path junction.  I still tick off features as I go along and I can still read the map when i want to - it is just on a screen.

 If I was a more spontaneous walker, I might well take a map more often so I can decide where to go next and use the gps or phone to rapidly locate where I am on the map.  Different strokes for different folks.
Solvitur Ambulando


  • Veteran Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7583
Re: Map reading
« Reply #19 on: 06:51:18, 31/03/21 »
Exactly wot he said ^^^^^^  O0
Where there's a will ...