/ Good walk to practive nav

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andy_e on 27 Jan 2014
Can anyone recommend a good area get out and brush up my navigation skills in the peak district? I was thinking somewhere around the Kinder Plateau could work, the more featureless the better!

Thanks in advance.
martinph78 on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to andy_e:

Anywhere in the dark, or a white-out would do.
Hopevalleypaul - on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to andy_e:

how about this from Edale MRT Facebook feed

"Last night we ran a navigation assessment for three of our aspirant team members. Perfect conditions for it on Bleaklow, wet dark and claggy. We set off from Doctors Gate on the A57. Here are the way points of one of the routes followed in order. Map and compass only, no technical gizmos.

SK 0883 9431
SK 1037 9425
SK 1034 9486
SK 1022 9572
SK 0889 9526
SK 0945 9454

All returned safely in the early hours, including to everyone's surprise the Team Leader."
andy_e on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to notts paul:

Thats a good call, I'll find a similar route. I suppose if you get totally lost, you can always head south the to A57 and then take a guess if the car is parked east or west of you!
highclimber - on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to andy_e:

If you can navigate accurately on Bleaklow or Kinder, you can Navigate pretty much anywhere in the UK!
Ramblin dave - on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to highclimber:

The top end of Bleaklow in particular. Kinder plateau is kind of unique in that it's pretty flat apart from all the groughs so I'm not sure how well the skills would transfer to normal hills, but finding your way around the section of Bleaklow between Higher Shelf Stones and Barrow Stones in bad weather is properly testing.
PPP - on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to andy_e:

Although I wander around Scotland and have no particular routes, I have few suggestions:
1. While hiking, try to keep an eye of your location as much as possible. Take a rest, find two landmarks you can recognize, take bearings, draw lines on the map and here you are. Check grid reference with your smartphone/GPS device. It's a great fun and you should do it anyway. I stepped into the great mist while it was perfectly sunny day from early morning to late evening. I didn't really need a map for most of the day (the mist appeared after 5th Munro that day), but I was glad I knew where I was.

2. Some parks have orienteering maps (well, at least one next to my home has, but I have never been to library to take a map). Worth a try at night? Or just print a map from Google, put some landmarks you want to reach, wait till it gets dark and then use your compass and map. Might be fun and in my opinion, most of navigation skills are the same, whether you are in the park, on the mountains or driving. Or you can ask a friend to place some items all around the park and then mark them on the map. Why not? It should be rather quiet during winter in most of the parks anyway.

3. Prepare before you do something (stupid). I was talking to non-hillwalker friend once and I said that I'd better try to get benighted before I get in trouble. She said that "if you don't get benighted, you don't have to worry about it. If that happens, it happens and you will find your way out". It didn't seem wise as if it gets dark when you don't plan it (injured, lost and so on), it might be more difficult to navigate.
I got benighted once intentionally and it was a great practice. Kept myself on the path, the sky was clear and it was full moon, so it wasn't even difficult.
Ramblin dave - on 27 Jan 2014
In reply to PPP:
> Although I wander around Scotland and have no particular routes, I have few suggestions:

> 1. While hiking, try to keep an eye of your location as much as possible. Take a rest, find two landmarks you can recognize, take bearings, draw lines on the map and here you are. Check grid reference with your smartphone/GPS device. It's a great fun and you should do it anyway. I stepped into the great mist while it was perfectly sunny day from early morning to late evening. I didn't really need a map for most of the day (the mist appeared after 5th Munro that day), but I was glad I knew where I was.

Good point! You practice a lot of navigation even if you aren't on "challenging" terrain. I've spent a fair amount of time trundling along obvious paths with no inherent navigational difficulty entertaining myself[1] by checking on the map to identify everything from slight changes in the angle of the slope to the distant ridge on the skyline. It really helps to get a feel for how the map and the reality match up, which still seems to work when the path isn't there and the clag's down...

[1] Yes, I am a massive geek.
Post edited at 21:51
Jake463 - on 29 Jan 2014
In reply to andy_e:

Kinder for navigation is pretty straightforward - if you get lost follow a stream, preferably N or S, and you'll soon hit its ring of steep and craggy edges, all of which are circled by good paths with roads nearby.

Bleaklow is a bit trickier as its bigger, less paths and the streams, especially the Alport, Westend and Uppermost Derwent are long and pathless and you could end up miles from where you want to be.

If you really want featureless, try starting near the Snake Inn, going up Oyster Clough then following the watershed over "Hope Forest" to Alport Low and return by Upper Grain. Can easily extend it via Grains in the Water to take in Bleaklow Stones and Bleaklow Head too. The Hope Forest moor is particularly challenging going...

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