Entries tagged "navigation courses"
The latest issue of Navigation News (The magazine of the Royal Institute of Navigation) contains an opinion piece I wrote on two contentious subjects. I've included excerpts here for those unfortunate souls who do not subscribe.
Why do we get disorientated?
Men and Women: The better navigator?
Update: On Monday 17th I discussed male and female navigation strategies and aptitudes on the Today programme on BBC Radio 4. You can listen to it here. It includes my theory as to why men won't ask for directions.
My thanks to Tim and Laura Moss, who braved the elements on Bignor Hill yesterday afternoon. They found themselves wrapping up warm and staring into the November wind thanks to a wedding present of a natural navigation course. (I didn't get to read the card, but maybe it said something along the lines of 'If you can smile through this, you'll be very happy!').
It was a fun afternoon, especially as I got to watch Tim and Laura's face expressions as they grappled with such fun concepts as 'How to find the south celestial pole from a field…
It would be true to say that I would not be writing this blog if the sun rose in the same place each day. I don't mean that in a very general sense, it's not because the whole world would be very different and maybe the dinosaurs would have survived and humans would never have evolved, blah, blah...
No, it is because in the spring of 2008 I was busy trying to work out whether there was any point in trying to make a living by teaching natural navigation, or not. Whether, perhaps, that was the stupidest idea…
A subject that I have blogged about in the past is one I return to today. I am increasingly delighted at the diversity of background interests of those who also take an interest in natural navigation.
I regularly give talks to specialist groups, only last Monday night I found myself at the Sandhurst Social Club, speaking to the knowledgeable and very likeable Yateley Offshore Sailing Club. Such specialized gatherings have a mutual interest that draws them together and so variety quite naturally gives way to experience in one area.
On the Beginner's Guide courses that I run,…
Nearly all navigation is an attempt to join landmarks together. Even those on boats crossing oceans are probably hoping to find a landmark they recognise as the final part of their journey.
The word, 'landmark', simply means something that makes a location recognisable. It is deliberately vague as it can apply to anything, a landmark may be extraordinary - the statue of Christ the Redeemer towering over Rio de Janeiro's from Corcovado mountain. Or it may be mundane - a red postbox at the edge of a village.
The more confident you can be that you have…
The sort of morning that navigators dream about. A stroll around the National Maritime Museum in Falmouth. No agenda, just a meander.I had been aching to visit for a long time, but even with my predilection for getting around a bit, Falmouth is not en route to many places and so it took a while to find the right excuse. The perfect excuse turned out to be: "I want to go to the National Maritime Museum in Falmouth and so I am going to go to the National Maritime Museum in Falmouth." Said without, I must emphasise, any hint…
On a Country Navigator course on Saturday, I was asked a question that I get asked quite regularly:"What sort of people come on your courses?"It is both an easy and difficult question to answer. The difficult part is that the backgrounds of those who have an interest in natural navigation is extremely diverse. It is tempting to say that it could not be more diverse, but that is not true; by the time someone finds themselves on one of my courses they have selected themselves as someone who can reach the UK (typically) and also someone who either is willing…
Another very enjoyable Beginner's Guide to Natural Navigation course at the Royal Geographical Society yesterday. The diversity of interests and experiences never fails to amaze me; from desert wanderers to cruise ship sailors and even a sailor from a tall ship in the Pacific. Wonderful!It was a beautiful full moon last night and I got to experiment with a new lens that I have bought. Still a long way to go until I take a photo of the moon that I am happy with, but always learning which is satisfying.The phase of the moon appears the same all over…
Another Beginner's Guide course at West Dean College and another very enjoyable day. As usual a very diverse group, which always adds to the day. Today's group brought with them experience in rock-climbing, law, drainage, the Royal Marines, sailing, IT, horse-racing, tax, astronomy, farming and professional carp fishing.
A blog is not a blog without an occasional rant, so...It strikes me that the world of navigation training has strayed a little off course. If you type "navigation courses" into Google you get nearly five and a half million results. I'd be prepared to wager that more than five million of these are associated with 'traditional' training. To my mind the majority of these are falling between two stools. They focus on using tools but not the best ones. The two ends of the spectrum are electronics and nature. Nobody, myself included, argues that natural methods are more accurate…