The Gea Org.

Navigation with Distance, Time, and Pace (III)

By Robert Finlay of

Edited by Federico Ferrero

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The ability to estimate distance, a good watch, and awareness of your pace are the MOST important tools in navigation.

ESTIMATING DISTANCE: The estimation of distance is all you need most of the time.

1. Linear distance vs. terrain distance:

At left is a map with the UTM grid superimposed; 1000 meter squares. So, it is 1.4 km from "A" to "B"; that is easy enough to measure; just use the scale provided with each map. (Also, the diagonal of a square is 1.4 times the side.) But several important considerations are:

If you walk from "A" to "B" the profile of your walk, in terms of elevation change, will not look like this,

AB, the linear distance. Instead your walk will look something like this, A B, which is about 200 meters, or 14% further; this is the terrain distance. The principal is this; walking the hypotenuse of a triangle is a longer walk than walking the base.

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