Finding your way using Map, Compass, Altimeter and GPS
By Bob and Mike Burns
Navigation has to be one of the most important things to learn and understand before exploring the outdoors. Living in an age where technology rules everything I think it is far to easy to get lazy and rely solely on electronic equipment such as phones and GPS’s when heading into the bush.
When it came time for myself to further develop my navigational skills past the point of just reading North, South, East and West on a compass I carried out some research which lead me to the book; Wilderness Navigation by Bob and Mike Burns. This book had a lot of positive reviews and after reading it for myself would have to agree. It has a lot of valuable info on equipment, topographical map types, co-ordinate systems and more. One of the great parts of this book are the map reading exercises near the end which get you to practice reading terrain and finding where you are using what you have just read and learnt. Having interactive examples really helps retain the information and it turns it from theoretical info into practical tools.
“Father-and-son team Bob Burns and Mike Burns, have decades of professional experience teaching navigation, map and compass, and GPS skills through The Mountaineers and other outdoor education centres.”
Contents of the book
Orientation with Map and Compass
Navigation with Map and Compass
More about Maps
More about Compass and Geomagnetism
The Global Positioning System
Wilderness Route Finding
This book is an invaluable tool for anyone heading out into the bush, and I would recommend it as a strong starting point in the journey of Wilderness Navigation.
If you venture into the Australian bush during the warmer months of the year chances are you will eventually encounter a snake. Now don’t get me wrong I am not a passionate snake lover but I certainly don’t let the possibility of meeting one deter me from getting out doors, respecting them and accepting the fact you are in their environment is the best thing you can do.
Australia is home to many different types of snakes, some venomous and some not, but the risk of being bitten is very low. In 7 years of bushwalking in various parts of Australia I have come across about 8 snakes and not one has become aggressive towards me. Most of the time they are gone before I have even had time to identify them. That being said one thing that is always in my pack is a good quality snake bite kit. After purchasing a couple of kits I was very disappointed in the quality of items they contained and they did not install me with a lot of confidence. I then came across a kit from the guys at Next72hours.
The kit is assembled in Australia using specifically chosen quality components and has been well thought out. It comes vacuumed sealed so is completely waterproof, makes it more compact and as long as it is sealed you know all the contents are there. The kit is based around the pressure immobilisation bandage technique so is suitable for snakebites, and stings and bites from: the Cone Shell, the Blue Ringed Octopus and the Funnel Web Spider. Obviously knowing how to use this kit properly is very important, I would recommend anybody travelling to remote areas be trained in first aid, or at the very least research information regarding the treatment of snakebites.
Contents of the Kit
1 Pair Latex Gloves
1 Packet Sterile Gauze Squares
1 Permanent Marker
3 x 10cm Compression Bandages
1 Triangular Bandage
1 S.O.L.A.S Approved Rescue Whistle
1 Comprehensive Instruction Pamphlet
1 User Friendly Patient Notes Card
I highly recommend this kit for anyone interested in the outdoors, I keep one in my 4WD and have another ready to pack on any adventure be it a short day hike or multi day trek.