How to Use a Compass Without a Map

If you want to learn how to use a compass without a map, there are certain things you will have to learn first. You have to know the sides of the world, that is to say – the directions: East, West, South and North.

When you look at the compass, you will see the needles. One of them is red and it always points towards the “N” (North).  Now that you know this, each following step is very easy to learn. If you know where the North is, it will be easy for you to determine other directions. If you are heading north, it is easy, of course; but if you are heading to some other direction, you will have to pay your attention to the scale you see on your compass edges. The scale covers the figures from 0 to 400 (on some compasses it can go from 0 to 360).

The letters “W”, “S”, “N” and “E” are imprinted on your compass. If you want to go to any of these directions, you will easily manage to do so; if you wish to go to a direction that is somewhere between these four main directions, you will have to do the following: hold your compass still and let the needle start turning. Start turning yourself, all together with the compass in your hand. Turn the housing of your compass and when the needle gets aligned with the compass housing lines, stop turning it. Look where the red needle is pointing to. If it is pointing towards the north, it means everything is all right and you can go your desired direction. If it isn’t, then you could get lost, so keep trying until you succeed.

When you finally get it right, follow the travel-arrow. Now, these instructions can be useful to you if you find yourself somewhere with no map; still, if you go to a picnic, camping or hiking, make sure to bring the map, lamp, water and warm clothes!

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