Some very good reasons why people go on Map & Compass Courses

When someone contacts me to ask about a course I am always curious about what motivated them to do so. And I never cease to be pleased by the variety of answers.

Many of my clients are already experienced walkers and are members of walking clubs, but they’ve always left the navigation to someone else. These clubs are always looking for new people to lead their walks, for which knowing where you are going is a big advantage. After even half a day learning how to use a map and compass, many feel confident to step up to lead. In addition, some within these groups want to mix in some independent walks and are looking for the skills and confidence to branch out on their own, often with a friend.

Sometimes people come to me because they need a walking navigating qualification, and the Bronze NNAS award is a great place to start. This might be to attend a training course for a walking holiday company such as Ramble Worldwide or HF Holidays. Alternatively they want to help young people on their Duke of Edinburgh expeditions, whether it is as a trainer or assessor. BXM Outdoors is a company which will accept applicants with an NNAS qualification.

Most recently a very fit young guy came to me as part of his preparation for running a 100 mile ultra-marathon – the company he plans to go with requires navigation experience. He is part of a rapidly grow cohort of younger adults who have been led to the great outdoors by social media. Most will use an app on their smartphone to navigate; there’s nothing wrong with that, but your confidence and feeling of freedom to create and follow your own path is massively increased with basic map and compass navigation skills.

And finally I’ve noticed an uptake from people who are keen to turn their phones onto silent and get in touch with a world outside modern technology.