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on March 2, 2016
Been developing & delivering training materials for many years. Mr. Seidman shows how it should be done. The first 20 pages are so engaging, it sent me off thinking about "bigger picture" ideas, beyond navigation. I'd ponder a few seconds, then (happily) re-read a certain passage to ensure it stuck. It seems each sentence was honed for maximum meaning with minimal words, and does so with an almost lyrical quality. Damn. Seidman & Cleveland, the beer's on me.

If completely disinterested in the topic, I'd still enjoy this book. But I AM interested, and having read it cover to cover, I have learned first, how to THINK like a navigator, and second, to use tools and techniques to BE a navigator.

Dining room table - covered in topo maps, a baseplate compass, and this book. I periodically go outside and plunge sticks in the ground and stare at shadows. Watch sun, moon, stars. Compass bearing, look for a transit. I'll let you discover for yourself "the foundation stone of all wayfinding" on page 11. :-) Can't wait to get out in the woods and do this for myself, and find engaging ways to share this with the kids we bring along on some trips.

BTW, I bought another book on this topic at the same time, which I opened first. I'm betting that this "bible" on the topic is great, but the first 20 pages is of no value to the actual topic. I got antsy, went outside and did some chores, then came back and read Seidman's book and...(see above). I'll get back to that other book soon.
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on November 6, 2013
I see other reviews here going bananas over issues I didn't spot. I read the book, went out to the middle of nowhere in the woods, and didn't get lost. The book was easy to read, author had fun tid bits, and in general it helped all over. I'm happy I bought it.

I might mark it lower later, but for now it is a great beginner book.

Edit: I have now read 3 full books on navigation, and chapters from a few "all around" books for wilderness survival. This one is the best. Does a passable job of GPS, Magnetic Fields around the earth, travel without map or compass, things that make a compass fail. This book does an exceptional job at teaching map and compass. Simply put, this book is the best.

I encourage the authors to come out with a new addition, add 20 pages or so expanding on longitude/latitude, magnetic fields, travel without map and compass. This is such a great intro, the best so far. The only real con is the it doesn't have a lot of fun exercises like "Be expert with map and compass". Other than that small con, the rest is amazing. Again I encourage the authors to put out a third addition, they have a following and this really can be a one stop shop for everyone.
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on December 12, 2015
Descriptive, thorough and well written. If you are looking to start adventuring off the beaten path and don't want to be up the creek without a paddle this is a must for you to own and really sit down and read carefully taking in all the knowledge you can from it as it covers more than one would expect. From compass reading, map reading to basic real time land reading, tips and processes. If it had anything more it would talk about edible and useful plants.
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on August 8, 2011
I've wanted to do some hiking in some of the state and national parks near my home, but I've been afraid of getting lost. Every year there are stories of hikers who had to be "found" when they lost their way. In most cases they weren't carrying a map and compass (or maybe didn't know how to use one?) and or their GPS failed for some reason. In any case, search and rescue crews spend a fair amount of time each year locating the lost and bringing them back to civilization.

I don't want to be one of those folks and I know my limitations. I have zero sense of direction and I wanted to learn how to find my way with a map and compass. For me, a newbie, this book has been perfect. The authors assume you don't know anything and start at the beginning. Each chapter is self contained in that it covers a specific topic related to wilderness navigation while at the same time building on skills taught in previous chapters.

At many points throughout the book, the authors encourage (insist) you go out an practice what you just learned. They have you start with exercises you can perform in a big field where you can always see your car and can't get lost. You gradually tackle more complex situations until you're able to leave the car and trail head behind and wander out of sight with a realistic expectation that you can find your way back.

The authors are very up front that there is no magic other than practice, practice, practice with the equipment you expect to use in the wild.

That being said, I found the book to be any easy read and with techniques that were very easy to understand and put into practice. I'm hopeful that with the skills I've learned, I can finally go see what's on the other side of that hill.
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I checked out a few books from the local library and after a few minutes in this one I had to buy it. the book is very straight forward and overs many little stories along the way as side notes. I got a copy for myself and one for my wife. We both love the outdoors in Colorado's back country and having a refresher on this subject was great.I encourage anyone looking to learn more or even just '' brush '' up on their out door skills to check this handy little book out. I also love that its paper back, it sits very well in our 3 day packs along with our compasses and maps.
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on February 12, 2013
This is an incredibly detailed book on land navigation. Even people who are very experienced will learn something. Particularly nice is that the author starts with finding your way without any tools, then introduces a map, then introduces a compass. All build on one another and give you new capabilities. Conversely, when you are out in the wilderness and your luck begins to turn, you'll have the skills you need even if your map and compass are now a mile downstream after a disastrous stream crossing. GPS batteries can and will die when you need them most. Know how to find your way without the fancy modern gadgets!
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on October 27, 2016
This is a good manual if you are taking a sit down course in land navigation. But if you are just looking for basic skills like map/compass orientation, azimuth, declination, and reading topographic maps, there are more basic pubs out there especially printed for the army and USMC so you may want to shop on.
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on August 26, 2013
This book is so well written. Concise and written in language that puts the average reader at ease, David gives you the information you need to get from point A to B. The compass navigation section is complete and discusses several types of compasses. As well, he covers alternative navigation skills, such as using a watch, the sun, a GPS and dead reckoning. Anyone who travels should have these skills. I read the entire book in one day!
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on May 26, 2013
This book was very helpful, I liked how it explains every aspect of navigating one at a time and it really lets you grasp their ideas before bringing it together as one. It helps you have a better understanding of everything so if your with out a map you can use your compass and vise versa. Just a great overall navigation book, strongly recommend if your just getting into it.
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on December 31, 2013
If you read the book reviews on this book you might experience some confusion if you are new at compass usage. There is no need for it as this is a great book for the beginner. It's very clearly written and it's a step by step process of learning so you are never overwelmed by the info.
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