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  1. #36391
    Confused? You will be. Jay_Benson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by notdeadyet View Post
    There's a whole industry built up around convincing the general public that land navigation is too hard without a GPS and digital mapping. It's shocking to see so many people in often quite committed places that have absolutely no idea how to navigate their way out without their phones or a Garmin. Land navigation is a piece of piss, 95% of the time you don't even need to touch a compass. But the industry does its best to make everyone think it's harder than calculus. I don't go anywhere I don't know without a paper map, no question it's the best way to navigate.
    On another forum I frequent (for people planning / doing travelling overland around various parts of the world) there are oftendiscussions about the best GPS / mapping system for different countries. However, there are also those that like maps and won't give them up - this is mainly for one reason, in addition to the desire to get an overview. The reason is a simple one and one that, to my mind, strikes to the heart of why I want to travel - it is the interactions that maps generate with local people. Someone looking at a GPS unit / telephone is cut off and remote from the people just 1m away from them because their mind is on the electronic gizmo in front of them - someone with a map is very approachable and so conversations start up - sometimes in rudimentary sign language - and information flows between people about places to go, routes to avoid, things to see. For myself I will be travelling with maps and using GPS to go the last mile to the door of the hotel / camp site with frequent stops to drink tea / coffee, look at the map and talk with people.
    Public transport planning info at www.traveline.info

  2. #36392
    Prior Member Tim Digger's Avatar
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    I can use a map and compass, competed in the Karrimor or OMM as it is now and finished, but I mostly use my phone with apps written and maintained by my walking buddy. I have adequate battery back up, usually a compass and sometimes a paper map. But mostly I just use GPS and out of date available OS electronic maps. I guess in part this comes from doing very long walks were carrying all the required paper maps is just not feasible. In answer to those who say you must always have paper as backup I have lost a paper map in the wind on the Cairngorm Plateau. The correct is you should always have backup of whatever sort.
    Evolution is great at solving problems. It's the methods that concern me.
    Tim Digger

  3. #36393
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    Quote Originally Posted by cazyoung View Post
    I also use paper maps. I have no sat-nav nor do I have apps on my phone. I was recently asked how I manage without apps I just laughed.
    A considerable number of years ago I was doing (and failing) the practical part of First Class Diver - a tiny part of the exercise involved eight of us crammed in the wheelhouse of an unfamiliar hardboat with an unfamiliar GPS. The "task" was that "the divers have just surfaced from wreck 'xxx' [where we currently were] and the next dive is in three hours on the slack at 'yyy'" After about ten minutes of frantic button pushing and "I'm sure waypoint is on this menu..." the master examiner told us to stop.

    "Have ANY of you looked at the paper chart?"

    Cue shuffling of feet and shaking heads

    "well, if you had, it would have taken less than five seconds to see the next site is fifteen miles west of here, there is nothing in the way. This vessel does 6.5 knots flat out. In the time you've spent arguing about technology you could have been one mile closer to it. As it is, you've missed slack"

  4. #36394
    Nicotine, valium, vicodin... notdeadyet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Digger View Post
    I guess in part this comes from doing very long walks were carrying all the required paper maps is just not feasible. In answer to those who say you must always have paper as backup I have lost a paper map in the wind on the Cairngorm Plateau. The correct is you should always have backup of whatever sort.
    It's always a problem with long distance routes and publishers like Harveys have done some good condensed linear route maps or Cicerone's guidebook have just enough mapping to not get lost if you're paying attention. Equally if a route is waymarked well enough then you can get away with no mapping, I've done that a few times.

    The other issue is just the sheer cost of OS maps. I don't know how the OS manage it but they seem to have subdivided the UK in such a way that any weekend trip needs at least 2 sheets and they are a hell of a lot more expensive than their European equivalents.

    I carry a GPS but I almost never touch it other than the occasional function check. It's there either for anyone I'm with who may not be as confident at navigation or for emergency if I need to give an accurate grid ref to someone else. Personally, I think the biggest problem with map reading is people thinking you get the map out when you need to know where you are. It's too late by that point and that's when you start to make errors with big margins. Terrain association with the map in your hand as you go is about as reliable as it gets. I can't remember the last time I used a compass in anger. What annoys me is the way companies market their products by pretending navigation is high-level science. It isn't, 95% of it is really easy and if you do it right stops you ever needing the 5% of compass work that is difficult.
    Caliph Hamish Aw-Michty Ay-Ya-Bastard, Spiritual leader of Scottish State in England

  5. #36395
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    Our GPSs bring peace and harmony. Plenty of notice as to the next junction, no telling me that I should have taken that last left, it knows where the next petrol station is, it does not start texting just before a round about. I love the lady of the dashboard and commend her to you all, I also believe in arriving at my destination without being at war with my navigator.

    Rgds

  6. #36396
    #keepittea ebt's Avatar
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    Its probably just me, but i find navigating with technology doesnt help me to build a mental map/understanding quite as well as using paper.

  7. #36397
    Established TDF Member steelemonkey's Avatar
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    When I arrive at a holiday destination, I tend to spend the first evening in a pub reading the OS map. This way , I find lots of things of interest to visit. Am I weird?
    Paul.
    If God had meant us to breathe underwater, he would have given us larger bank balances.
    Human beings were invented by water as a means of moving itself from one place to another.

  8. #36398
    Tofu eating wokerato Chrisch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ebt View Post
    Its probably just me, but i find navigating with technology doesnt help me to build a mental map/understanding quite as well as using paper.
    No, its not just you mate. I use a satnav for deliveries and when it fails I have to get the old paper map out and wonder where I am now have to find all the main road routes. My old TomTom let me down once and added at least an hour to a five hour day.
    We give 350m a week to the EU. Let's give it to Dido Harding instead.

  9. #36399
    Prior Member Tim Digger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ebt View Post
    Its probably just me, but i find navigating with technology doesnt help me to build a mental map/understanding quite as well as using paper.
    Quite agree with this using sat nav lengthens learning of a new area. I still find Leeds where my daughters now live difficult. Or I may be getting older and less able to learn new tricks. Or Leeds may just be a horrible place to drive/navigate round.
    Evolution is great at solving problems. It's the methods that concern me.
    Tim Digger

  10. #36400
    Nicotine, valium, vicodin... notdeadyet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ebt View Post
    Its probably just me, but i find navigating with technology doesnt help me to build a mental map/understanding quite as well as using paper.
    Same for me. I don't know if it's just a function of having a very limited screen area but I can't get a picture of where I am in the landscape scrolling round a phone screen. An OS maps gives you the big picture and terrain association is the single best skill for map reading there is. One thing I was taught years ago when doing a route plan is write a description of what you expect to see along it from just the map. You can walk a route just from that description without ever looking at a map and not seeing what you expect to see is a good trigger to thinking that you've taken a wrong turn. You can still do it with a phone/tablet but it takes twice as long. It's different in a car but on foot you need to have an idea of the terrain. GPS and digital mapping gives you lots of information but, like all these high end fitness watches, you have to ask yourself how useful all that data is. There's times GPS is a lifesaver like in forest, assuming you can get a good view of the sky, or in very steep terrain but generally I find it makes my life more complicated.
    Caliph Hamish Aw-Michty Ay-Ya-Bastard, Spiritual leader of Scottish State in England


 

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