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Suunto M3 D/L Compass

Suunto M-3 D Declination Adjustable Compass

The Suunto M-3 D Compass is a baseplate style adventure compass with a declination adjustment that is optimized for use in forested or mountainous terrain where you can rarely see your destination. I’ve been using mine for 4 years, ever since I became really interested in off-trail hiking and navigation and started teaching those skills as […]

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GPSFileDepot Home Page - Free GPS Topo Maps for Garmin GPS Receivers

GPSFileDepot – Free Garmin GPS Maps

If you own a Garmin GPS receiver, you can save yourself a chunk of change by downloading and installing the free user contributed maps available at which has an excellent collection of US topographic maps, as well as maps from all over the world. The site provides also provides an excellent set of tutorials that describe […]

Continue Reading · 4 provides a lot of different maps to choose from in addition to the US Geological Survey Map shown here.

Topographic Maps and Route Visualization

Some people can read a topographic map and visualize what the landscape should look like based on the shape of the contours lines shown. It’s a real skill to do it well, and while I’m pretty good at it,  I can miss details unless I really concentrate. I compensate through careful trip planning using a variety […]

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Crawford Notch - a deep valley and mountain pass

Navigating Without a Compass

Most people don’t know how to use a compass to navigate and while it’s a very useful skill to have, you can get by without it if you have a good map and hike on well marked trails. Even then, you do want to develop your map reading skills, particularly those where you figure out your […]

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