Eastern Washington Orienteering Club

Using A Compass With A Map

A shortcut…

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With a little bit of practice, the method you just learned is easy and reliable. On this page I'll describe how experienced orienteers combine steps to save a few seconds every time they check their compass.

Start by folding your map down to a size you can easily manage in one hand along with your compass on top.

Line your compass edge up with the direction you want to go on the map (just like in step 1). Now turn your body till the north lines on the map are aligned with the magnetic compass needle. That's it — you and your map are facing the direction you want to travel.

Now that you know how to use a baseplate compass, click through the steps for using a thumb compass — especially if you like the shortcut you just learned on this page.

Bonus Details