Wednesday 20 July 2016

Navigation Skills Training Courses in The Lake District. July 18th & 19th 2016.

Yesterday & Monday, Iain was out in the Lake District fells with Nicola & Richard Penfold who had travelled up to the area for a weeks walking holiday from London.

The couple's friends Rob & Evita Evans also from London, had booked a two day bespoke Navigation Skills Training Course in The Lake District  for them as a wedding present. Rob & Evita attended one of our bespoke Navigation Skills Training Courses in The Lake District in May 2012 and had also recently paid for a one day course for their daughter Mieke and son in law Adam.

Clearly, we are perceived to be doing something right with our Lake District based Navigation Skills Training Courses and we would like to extend a big thank you! to Rob & Evita for all of the business you have put our way!
Anyway, we started day one as usual with Nicola & Richard (photo one) by walking up Hall Lane near Staveley beginning with basic skills such as map orientation, measuring distance on the map and pacing it on the ground.

We used these skills to locate tick off features along our route and the pair became quite adept at reading the map and identifying features on the ground as well as accurately finding them- exactly what we wanted to achieve today!

As usual on these courses, we supplied the maps - 1:50 and 1:25'000 scales in handy A4 Laminated versions. The compass also featured in photo two is the one we recommend for these courses - the Silva Type 4 Expedition - ideal for our courses, but you'd be surprised at how many people choose to ignore our advice!

After lunch on day one, Iain gave Nicola & Richard the skills to find and give grid references  to be able to determine locations on the map; and with an eight figure grid reference we were able to get our accuracy down to the nearest ten metres. We followed this by learning how to use the compass to take a bearing between grid references and then using it to walk on a bearing. We would spend the rest of the afternoon of day one walking between grid references - using the compass, before finishing off talking about Naismith's Rule and calculating timings between grid references as well - all good navigation skills!

On day two, we travelled further up the Kentmere Valley with the intention being to further put into practice the skills learnt on day one  and learn some new ones too!

We started off by identifying unknown features from a known location using the compass before setting off on a fairly long walk up the upper Kentmere Valley to find the sheepfold in photo three.

Nicola & Richard were most enthusiastic about pacing and identifying tick off features along the way and  were able to accurately identify exactly where they were on our walk at any time; and they also found the sheepfold no problem.

Once on the "open fell" things became  a little harder to find and this really relied on the pairs ability to accurately pace and walk on a bearing as well as "time" using Naismith's Rule.

We visited some harder to find locations such as a bridleway/stream junction and a stream junction in the middle of nowhere - all of which the couple managed to find.  By this time it was mid afternoon and getting very hot, so we returned via the Kentmere Reservoir (photo four) and Kentmere Valley to the vehicle before going off to the Hawkshead Brewery in Staveley for a well earned beer with Nicola and Richard very pleased with what they had learnt over the two days.

Rob & Evita Evans paid £160 per day for Nicola & Richard's "one on two" Bespoke Navigation Skills Training Weekend. This may sound like a lot but obviously the benefits of a couple of people working with an instructor were perceived to outweigh the cost - which they most definitely do!

The other benefit of a bespoke Navigation Skills Training Course in The Lake District is that you can book one at any time you fancy. For those people who think £160 per day sounds too much then consider our Navigation Skills Training Weekends priced at £80 per person for the two day course - but expect to be part of a much larger group.

To book your bespoke Navigation Skills Training Course or Navigation Skills Training Weekend in The Lake District - contact us here. We look forward to working with you!

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