Compass and Pace-counting Exercises

05 February 2018

Bottle Lake Forest Visitor's Centre

Controls will be available until 15th February.

This exercise has been set up to allow you to practice “running on the compass”. There are two variations of the map available, one has sections of the map whited-out so that you can only use your compass, while the other shows the full map. The controls are marked with orange streamers and a yellow ear tag. The ear tag has the code listed in the control descriptions.

Between the compass legs there is a dashed line which can be used to calibrate your pace-counting. The distances between track junctions (these are identified by purple crosses on the map) along the dashed line are given in the control descriptions.

It is important that for each leg on a course, that you have a plan which involves following “something”. Something could be a line feature on the map such a track, stream, gully, ridge etc or a collection of point features close enough together to link together, such as a track, then, marsh, boulder cluster etc. In all of these cases it is important to use your compass to have the map orientated so that you execute your plan well. Sometimes there are no features in the terrain to follow or it is simpler to just “run on your compass”. In this case you are still following “something” – the “something” is your compass. In this case you have to be careful to acknowledge to yourself that you’re relying on your compass and to invest time on checking your direction. If you use a thumb compass, then the usual way to run on a bearing is to use the purple line to point the way to go, and use the thumb compass to line up the north lines on the map with the compass needle. Once the map is orientated, in this way, the purple line on the map will point in the direction to travel.

You can download the maps below:
Full map
Map with whited-out areas