Map and Compass Skills 1

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Basic Map and Compass Skills


Map (OS is preferred)
Explorers (optional)


Split the explorers in to equal groups

In there groups show them the basics of setting a map

Once this this has been achieved move on to 4 figure and 6 figure grid references 2 of each references per explorer, and then move onto icons on the map for explores to give you a 6 figure grid reference on (i.e. Church with spire, view point, phone Box ) 2 per explorer.

then move on to Bearing how to take bearings etc

Once this is done move onto distance using the scale at the bottom of the map and string

Once the explorers have grasped all of the above ask them to plot a route on the map over a set distance to achieve (5km, 10km, 15km,20km, etc) using the 6 figure grid references and bearings to achieve the route.

For example if you set a distance of 15km (allow 0.5 km each way) and the explorers should lay it out as follows:
1)from grid reference 623,432 walk 1.6km on a bearing on 37degs
2) turn to 123degs and walk 1.2km until you reach grid reference 624,232
and so on until they reach the distance set


  • compass
  • map reading

Badge Links

  • Air or Sea Navigation - Bearings