Koda wrote:thanks Lurch for the answer and good picture description. I think I do good navigating off trail because I split create route waypoints to get to my final destination. I don't think I would make it navigating to a waypoint as far away as 3 miles with all the terrain and vegetation involved.
Yeah, I don't see ever really going 3 miles straight on a bearing, but even if you use multiple points and repeatedly error you'll end up off in the long run. The state requires SAR to demonstrate the ability to do an 8 leg compass course, through varied terrain that totals to a minimum of 1 mile. That isn't *that* hard, but it can be if your gear isn't set right!
For general navigation there are much better tricks than full on following a bearing, but if you're looking for a specific point it's still one of the best!
Koda wrote: Lurch wrote:
Now we just need to discuss map datums
go for it, I have no idea how this affects my navigation...
Map datums really only come into play when you start plotting coordinates. Super layman version, the datum is the data set that makes the spherical model of the planet that the maps are laid on top off. Pretty much all USGS topo's use NAD27 as their primary datum. That would be the North American Datum - 1927.
The other dominate datum is WGS84, or the World Geodetic System - 1984 (sometimes people use NAD83, but they're essentially the same). Most modern technology, cellphones, vehicle GPS, google earth, google maps, blah blah blah, use WGS84. It makes sense.. It's newer, and more accurate to the world as a whole.
It's important to note that you can be just as accurate with the different datum for our needs. However, they are different
! The exact same numbers, plotted in different datums will represent different spots on the ground. Around here, between NAD27 and WGS84 you're off by about 80meters. Which doesn't seem like a lot, but it can easily put you on the wrong side of a ridge or creek. In other words, if your GPS is set to WGS84, you cannot plot those coordinates onto a NAD27 map without converting them first. Luckily you can easily use your GPS to convert coordinates, and most people don't actually plot things in the field these days..