Polaris, The Plough & Cassiopeia

How to use stars to find north

Probably the simplest way to use the stars to find north is by finding Polaris, also known as the Pole Star or the North Star.  Polaris isn’t a particularly bright star but it has the distinct advantages of being over the north pole and not appearing to move in the night sky, 2 features that we […]

Navigating by the moon 1

A simple way to determine direction at night is by the moon.  Draw an imaginary line that connects the tips of a crescent moon.  Where the imaginary line touches the horizon is approximately south.  The higher the moon in the sky, the more accurate direction will be. This only works when there is a crescent […]

Natural navigation using the moon

Letterboxing on Dartmoor

Letterboxing 4

I was fortunate to grow up in the west country with  Dartmoor on my back doorstep.  I was also fortunate to be allowed to venture out onto it at a fairly young age.  I would regularly spend 4 or 5 days at a time out hiking across the moor with friends, generally in a group […]

Shadow stick navigation 3

Being able to find your way is crucial for outdoor activities and bushcraft is no exception.  Whilst many mobile phones and devices have GPS capabilities, I still prefer an old fashioned map and compass.  But what if you lose or break your compass?  How then would you find your way.  There are many techniques you […]

shadow stick navigation

Find north with your watch 3

This is a straightforward way to find north with your watch.  In the UK it works best when we are on  Greenwich Mean Time (more or less from the end of March to the end of October).  When we’re on British Summer Time,  you need to make a slight adjustment and take off an hour. Oh, and […]