Cape Breton's Magazine

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Page 10 - Survival Kit, Compass and Topographic Map

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1973/5/1 (3784 reads)
 

Survival Kit, Compass and Topographic Map Mat Kanne of New Waterford is a careful man. He is a shotfire m tne mines, respon? sible for the safety of many men. He is a leader of a group of Venturers, a division of older Boy Scouts. And he is a woodsman who loves to share what he knows. Nothing makes him happier than to help young people become responsibly at ease in the woods. When we first talked with him he had recently completed a walk with Venturers across Cape Breton • Wreck Cove to Cheticamp • his fourth time across. It was a map and com? pass trip all the way. We asked him what he carries when he goes to the woods, even for a single day's hike, hunting or fishing. He showed us his survival kit and gave some basic information about the compass and topographical map. Mat recommends using a Silva Orienteering compass, because-it has a special base that helps indicate di? rect ion-of -travel accurately, and can also be used as a protractor for charting a course and taking map readings before you set out. The Silva people put out a book. Be Expert with Map'and Compass by Bjorn Kjellstrom ($3.50 through a local bookseller or directly from Silva, Ltd., 77 York St., Toronto.) The compass information that follows is based on a portion of that book and applies to any conventional compass. Mat keeps his compass on a cord around his neck and carries the rest of his survival kit in a 20 ounce can in a small canvas pack. He said, of course, the food can be varied to taste. He carries 3 bouillon cubes, 3 teaspoons instant coffee, 3 teaspoons powdered milk, 3 cubes of sugar (each individually wrapped in foil.) In cold weather, 3 dried soups. A whistle. A sturdy knife. A waterproof container of matches, prefer? ably the long-lasting kind with waxed tips. Flint, steel and cotton. A snare wire. Some fishline and hooks. And a small mirror with a cross scratched out of the center of the back coating. If you are lost, and someone is expecting you out • it won't be long before someone will be looking for you, possibly from the air. The mirror is held up with the right hand; the left hand is held out before you to catch the sun's reflection. The idea is to throw the cross onto your left hand, as you sight the airplane through the cross. You don't need any code. The pipe m the photograph is important to Mat's own survival. He was a good piece in on the walk from Wreck Cove to Cheticamp, when he discovered he had forgotten his pipe. He made the one in the photograph from elderberry wood from which the pith is easily removed. Finally, Mat fills the can half full of jelly candy. He says raisins or peanuts would do as well. With a compass alone you can take yourself into the wilderness and bring yourself out. It doesn't do much good if you take out the compass after you know you are lost. You must start off from a known point (usually a road you want to return to). Pick a distant landmark • a hilltop or a tree. Face it squarely and hold the compass in front of you in one hand. With the other hand, slowly turn the compass housing until the North part of the needle rests at the North marking of the housing. Be sure you take this reading away from barbed wire, power poles, any kind of metal, including a light meter. Now sight across the center of the READ HtsRC compass to the landmark, and read the number of c,c.ut > • 'J' ( degrees on the housing directly opposite your ---y'-?'-*''--' • -v zM ' face, on the other side of the compass center. C'Ou S t'<''' '/' . Perhaps the reading is 140 degrees. Write that down. Put compass away and start walk? ing toward the hilltop. Perhaps in among trees or down a grade.the landmark disap? pears. Simply hold the compass with 140 degrees on the housing directly opposite your face on the far side from you of the compass center. Rotate your whole body until the compass is oriented (that is, the North part of the needle points at the North, 360-degree mark on the housing). Pick a new landmark and continue on. If you decide Cape Breton's Magazine/10
Cape Breton's Magazine
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