We’ve all been there at least once or twice. Traveling through an unfamiliar area and realizing you have absolutely no idea where you are or how to get back on track. It can be rather frightening, especially if you’re in a questionable urban area or perhaps out in the bush and the sun is setting.
Fortunately, over the past centuries mankind has learned a thing or two about determining direction using indicators found in nature. We can use these naturally occurring clues to help us find our way. We all know, or should know by now, that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west. So, if it is early morning or late afternoon, you should be able to orient yourself that way, if nothing else.
Perhaps one of the easiest primitive navigation tips to start with is to learn how to locate the North Star.
Many of us were taught this when we were kids but perhaps have forgotten it over the years. Find the Big Dipper, which is usually pretty easy. Look at the two stars that make up the outer edge of the “cup” on the Big Dipper. Draw an imaginary line connecting those two stars and extending out beyond the “open” end of the cup. That line will lead you to the North Star, which is also the last star in the “handle” of the Little Dipper.
Knowing where the North Star rests in the sky will help you find all four compass directions. But, that only works at night, what about during the day? (continue reading)