TR52Logo.jpg  Troop 52  Union Congregational Church - Oakville, CT 06779




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Download Orienteering Punchcards

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 Orienteering Techniques

1. Review use of map and compass together:

  • Orienting map.
  • Taking bearing on map, then using bearing in field.
    (Be sure Scout takes bearing to a visible landmark (tree, rock, etc) then walks to the landmark rather than walking with eyes on compass)

2.Measure pace and running pace in meters. Equate it with scale on map.

3. Techniques / terminology:

  • Control Point…A marker placed in the woods for the Scouts to find. Its location is marked on the map.
  • Descriptive Clue…A description of the control point to distinguish it from other features within or near what is circled on the map. Examples: "trail intersection", "top of small hill", "ledge".
    Incorrect example: "maple tree" (not a feature shown on a map)
  • Collecting features…Scouts should take mental note of all features they walk past on the map, and anticipate what the next feature will be. This way they always know where they are.
  • Handrails…trails, streams, fences, walls that can be followed with confidence without using compass. Stress that they should use trails wherever possible for fastest and surest travel.
  • Attack point…A definite landmark on the map from which a bearing can be taken. (building, trail intersection, stream/trail junction, etc)
  • Aiming off (offset technique)…No one is perfect with compass bearings. You will always be off to one side or the other, never knowing which side! When taking a bearing to a control point that is situated on or near a handrail, aim off to one side of control point. That way, when you reach the handrail, you know which way to turn to reach the control point. See sketch below

4. Route Selection:

Once Scouts have been to #1 and #2, they will review the actual orienteering course with an instructor and discuss what techniques they will use to find each contol point.