Map, Compass & GPS

Map, Compass & GPS
Wild flowers along Fall Creek on the way to the Green Lakes - Oregon

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Navigation Term of the Month - True North

True north refers to the north pole; significantly different from the magnetic pole.  True north
is our principle geographic reference.  True North is located at the top center of the earth.  Topo graphic maps are laid out with a clear reference to true north.       

To keep my navigation simple I use a compass (Silva Ranger, Suunto M3) that can be adjusted to true north  and I set up my GPS receiver to report in degrees true.

This way I match my map with my compass and GPS receiver such that I am on the "same page" with all my navigation equipment.  

The difference between true north and magnetic north is called declination; it changes over time and it varies in relation to the hiker's location

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