Orienteering is the art of using a map and compass to determine how to get from one point to another point. This is one of the most critical skills a Scout has to learn and one of the hardest to teach. A variety of materials is referenced below that can be used to assist in teaching these skills.

Boys’ Life – Map Symbols
Boys’ Life – Map Quiz
Brunton Compass Company (online)

Brunton offers a opportunity for Scouters to purchase products at dealer cost. Contact Brunton for details

Distance Computer

One of the requirements for earning the rank of First Class Scout is to measure the height and/or width of designated items (tree, tower, canyon, ditch, etc.).  When you practice this, you find that you have to do a lot of arithmetic.  You must step off a measured distance and then divide that distance by the number of steps to find your step length.  This procedure can be complicated. We have found that it is better for a Scout to learn what a 2½ ft or 3 ft pace feels like. Then it is easier for him to figure out how many paces are required for a given distance or visa versa. Then you step off the unknown distance and now you must multiply that number of steps by your step length.  This can amount to a lot of work if you have to do it with pencil and paper.  It would be a lot easier to use a distance computer.

How to use a Compass Course

How to use a Compass - Compass alone.htm
How to use a Compass - Compass and Map interaction.htm
How to use a Compass - Magnetic Declination and uncertainty.htm
How to use a Compass - Suggested Exercises.htm
How to use a Compass - when you have no compass.htm
How to use a Compass in difficult foggy conditions.htm

OA Guide to Map & Compass

OA Guide to Map & Compass - Part 1.htm
OA Guide to Map & Compass - Part 2.htm
OA Guide to Map & Compass - Part 3.htm

Scouting Trail Sings
Silva Compass Company (online)
USGS National Mapping Information (online)
Create and Purchase Topo Maps Online (online)
Wilderness Navigation