If you love walking but have never been shown how to read a map than a one day map reading course in the Yorkshire Dales is just the thing. There is no doubt it will totally transform your walking experience for the better.
Recently we attended a three one day map reading courses hosted by the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority; Pathfinder – Introductory, Intermediate and advanced.
The introductory Pathfinder one day map reading course gave us a chance to learn how to read a map. After a short classroom based study of a map and what it can tell us we put what we were shown into practice. This was a practical experience, where we guided ourselves on a short circular walk using only a map and the natural and manmade features around us to identify our exact location and where to go next.
The Intermediate Pathfinder one day map reading course offered the opportunity to recap the map reading skills learnt in the introductory course but also to gain practical experience of using a compass. We guided ourselves on a slightly longer circular walk, on route a number of exercises had been developed for us to put what we had been shown into action and using bearings and other techniques to keep ourselves on track.
The Advanced Pathfinder one day map reading course wraps up what we learnt on the two previous days. The course begins with a very brief classroom sessions then up to Shunner Fell for a practical experience guiding ourselves on a circular walk using our map and compass. We also learnt how to take bearings from the landscape to identify where we were on the map – very useful should you ever get lost.
Sadly the Pathfinder courses are limited to only a couple of dates per year. But, have no fear you can still develop your map reading skills using local mountain leaders in the Yorkshire Dales. We have made contact with a few providers that offer enjoyable and extremely informative map reading courses. Having spoken to the mountain leaders they are extremely knowledgeable and can cater for all levels and abilities. Their courses are run in a relaxed, friendly style and perfect for anyone wanting to learn basic map reading and compass skills to take your walking skills to a new level.
The great thing about these courses is that you’ll find that the people on the one day map reading courses are a good mix, all sharing a common love for walking in beautiful countryside. You will enjoy your future walks a lot more knowing that you have a higher degree of skill should you come across any difficulty.
The following map reading courses are packed full of essential map reading and navigation skill that you get to learn, repeat and reinforce in the field. The skills you learn will help to enable you to plan, follow and lead a walk confidently. We’ve no doubt that you’ll leave these courses eager to put your new skills into practise.