Useful tips

Navigation is a life-long learning process, and there is always more to find out and new places to explore. When you know the basics, you can learn more, explore new features and go even further.

BEFORE heading out

When heading out for a hike in an unknown environment, details and preparations are crucial. Remember to take enough water and supplies for your stay, and make sure you have the right equipment to keep you dry and comfortable

Plan your trip

Before heading out, plan your trip. Take a good look at the map, and learn to read the graphics of the map. Then you can find which route is the most suitable for your hike, already in advance. Mark good spots for pausing, or where you’ll find a nice view or a beautiful scenery.

Navigating safely

When planning and travelling, use significant terrain objects to mark your route. Examples include rivers and lakes, hills, fields, paths, roads and power lines. By holding onto this visual “handrail” you travel faster and more safely, reducing the number of possible route-finding errors.


The weather can change quickly in the mountains or at sea. To stay safe, and to be sure to find your way home, learn how to use a compass and how to read a map – and practice it often!

The right knowledge

Using a map and a compass is just as much about getting lost as it is about staying on course. With the right knowledge you can safely get off — and back on – your planned route, and go wherever you want to go. Stay calm, and enjoy your hike, run, walk or wander. Navigation is a life-long learning process, and there is always more to find out and new places to explore. There is a wide range of compasses, that all will take you to your destination.

Time and distance

By keeping track of time and your pace, you can estimate how far you have walked – and when you will reach your destination.

Orienting the Map

To quickly orient oneself with the map is an important aspect of orienteering. To determine your direction of travel, make sure the map is always oriented to north by matching the Magnetic North lines to the direction of Magnetic North on the ground by using the compass.

Positioning With Cross-Bearings

By following the Silva 1-2-3 System in reverse order, it’s easy to plot a compass bearing onto a map. Take a bearing to an object in the field that you can also locate on the map. Place the compass on the map with the baseplate’s long side intersecting the object to which the bearing was taken. Draw a line along the baseplate, and your position is somewhere along this line. Repeat the procedure using another object that you can see from your current location and you’ll be at the intersection of the two lines. For best accuracy, use objects that are on a 90-degree angle from each other versus your location. For even greater accuracy, use three lines.

Buy the map in advance

Make sure the map is up to date and that you have the correct map for the trip you’re about to make

Examine at the map symbols and scales

Explanations for the symbols are found at the edge of the map. Learn more about reading the map here.

Learn the compass functions - and practice

Get acquainted with your compass – it can be your lifeline.

Plan your route before heading out

Choose the most suitable route. Plan the route in segments and make plans for stops along the way.

Learn the SILVA 1-2-3 system

For a safe and easy navigation experience. Learn more about SILVA 1-2-3 here.

Marine compass

Navigating at sea requires specific skills, and a whole different area of expertise, compared to navigating at land. We offer a wide range of marine compasses, to use on various types of boats and vessels, all of which will help you find your way on the surface.