Mountain Navigation

A day-long intermediate course on navigation in UK mountains. The course is normally run in the Ochils (Stirlingshire), but can be organised elsewhere in Scotland.

Dates

Sunday 19 Aug 2018
Sunday 16 Sep 2018

(If these dates do not suit you, please get in touch, we are happy run this course on demand, for 2 people or more.)

Who Is It For?

This course is for anyone venturing independently into the Scottish/UK hills who wants to improve their navigation skills. The course builds on our Using Map and Compass foundation course, focusing on how to make effective use of the basic tools and techniques to navigate in complex terrain. The practical focus of this course makes it suitable both for those with limited experience as well as those looking for a refresher.

The course is suitable for both walkers and runners (no running involved), and can be organised on 1:1 or group basis (max group size 4).

Rationale

Navigation is a core skill within hill and mountain craft. Simply put, navigation is the process of getting from A to B in a controlled manner, and as such it is more than 'using a map and a compass'. A competent navigator is someone who, in any given scenario, is able to formulate multiple navigation strategies for getting from A to B, select the strategy most appropriate to the given circumstances, and successfully, and safely, execute that strategy.

Navigation is not difficult, it's neither brain surgery, nor rocket science, nor a dark art. Anyone can become a competent navigator. However, the necessary skills can only be gained, and maintained, through hands-on practice -- the crux of the matter is this: navigation is at its hardest when it is needed most, and the level of skill required to navigate in the Scottish hills when navigation is truly required is higher than many of us appreciate.

Aims

The course aims to introduce its participants to the skills necessary to develop, select and execute navigation strategies in a safe and efficient manner. After completion of this course, the participants will be able to independently develop these skills through ongoing practice.

Content

This is a hands-on course in the hills. We will work through multiple navigation scenarios to familiarise ourselves with the key techniques and skills. Among other things we will look into:

  • How to formulate effective and efficient navigation strategies in complex terrain,
  • Accurate navigation using the basic tools and techniques,
  • Techniques for navigation in restricted visibility,
  • Handling 'being lost',

Requirements

  • Working knowledge of the key navigation tools and techniques (see our Using Map and Compass course),
  • A reasonable level of walking fitness to spend a day wandering the hills (we will cover ~17km with just under 900m of ascent).
  • Appropriate clothing and footwear (we will be walking mostly of paths, on rough damp ground).
  • Compass (must have a lined base plate and a magnifying glass; Silva Type 4 compass is highly recommended, but Type 3 / Ranger is OK); maps will be provided.
  • Stopwatch (any cheap stopwatch will do).
  • Food and drink for a day in the hills.

Cost

  • £65pp
  • £35pp for a group booking of 2+

Prices are inclusive of VAT.