One and two day map reading courses

Navigation training suitable for complete beginners that want to learn how to use a map and compass. Learn how to use a map and easy to identify features, map measurements and timings to plan and walk your own routes. On day two gain further confidence and learn how to use a compass to walk on compass bearings to cross more open countryside.

  • couple use map and compass to cross open heathland
  • map reading group use maps and compasses
  • couple wave a smile at the camera on a map reading course
  • learning to navaiagte and plan routes on tracks and paths
  • two people use prcise navigation and compass to check path direction
  • taking bearings witha compass to relocate when lost in the New Forest
  • group learn how to relocate them selves using a compass if lost in the new forest
  • using precise naviagtion pacing and bearings to cross open countryside

£59 or £109 per person

Suitable for absolute beginners or those looking to improve navigation skills

All equipment provided - just bring yourself!

Around 6 hours each day

Courses run all year

One to one, couples and groups

Comprehensive joining details and suggested kit list

Learn essential navigation skills so you can plan and walk your routes. Everyone can, and does learn how to use a compass to point them down the correct path! The two day course is ideal preparation for NNAS Silver, mountain navigation courses and for those walking long distance tracks and trails.

Learn how to navigate confidently on tracks and paths by using a map and orienting it to 'on the ground' features, map measurements and timings. Learn how to use a compass to make bearings to walk down the correct path or track. Over the two day navigation training learn to use a compass to cross more open countryside and strategies just in case you do get lost!

5-6 hour course each day with plenty of time to learn, practice navigation skills and ask questions. Each course length is around 10-12km at a learning pace - it is not a route march.

One to one, one to two, couples and groups always welcome with courses arranged to suit. Midweek courses dates and navigation training tailored to suit you and you activity can always be arranged.

All weather fun - Course takes place mostly on surfaced tracks, paths and well drained areas of the forest. Wear warm cloths, an extra layer and walking boots and come to enjoy the course at any time of the year.

All map reading equipment is provided - Proper maps and quality compasses are provided for the course. You just need to bring food, drink and yourself!

Course joining details are sent a couple of weeks before the course start date. Get in touch if you are using public transport and want a lift from the station (Brockenhurst) to the course start car park and the day two start form you accommodation.

The day one course is great as an introduction to navigation and for those who want to read a map and use a compass. Consider doing both days (two day course) if you want to learn further compass techniques and have time to practice and consolidate skills. Day two only courses run a few times a year if you want to come back and do it on another weekend.

  • Dates and places remaining
  • What you will learn
  • Start locations
Tab 1

Need a lift? - If you are arriving by public transport ask for a lift from the Brockenhurst Station.

Bespoke full day midweek map reading courses

One day - 1 to 1 person - £89, 1 to 2 people - £139, Three people £169, five or more from - £49 per person. Book two consecutive days to get a discount.

One and two day courses - check the course calendar for the very latest course information and places left on each course

13-14 October - Two day map reading course

13 October - One day map reading course

4 November - Wiltshire one day map reading

11-11 November - Two day map reading course

New - Wiltshire course start locations for one and two day map reading courses - Check then out here

Loads of other courses and dates available - Always check out the course calendar page here for the latest information and number of paces remaining

See every course date and place remaining on the Course Calendar

Tab 2

The day one - one day navigation course is ideal for beginners with absolutely no previous experience. Everyone can learn to read a map and use a compass!

The day two course is for those who have completed the day one course, introduction to map reading course or have some skills already.

Ideally do both days together as a two day navigation course; you can book for both days consecutively for a fun weekend course or choose to do day two on a different weekend.

You will Learn:

  • Read a map using easy to find features such as tracks, paths and forest rides.
  • Learn how to orient yourself and the map using easy to find features such as tracks, paths, rides and boundary features so you can choose the correct track and path to go down.
  • Measure the map and use time to keep track of distance and where you are.
  • Start using easy to find features to break your route down into smaller chunks.
  • Use a compass to point you down the correct track, path or forest ride.
  • Gain further confidence using a compass to walk on fainter tracks and paths, across more open countryside and to walk on a bearing (D2).
  • Start using contour information (D2).
  • Put everything together along with more accurate map measuring, pacing and timing to navigate confidently and accurately (D2).

On this course you will learn to use a compass to point you down the correct path. Don't worry if that sounds difficult, anyone can, and everyone does learn an easy to remember 1-2-3 process to use the compass.

Course duration and length
The day one, and two courses are usually around 5-6 hours. The full day one course teaches similar skills to the introduction course with the bonus of an afternoon to practice skills and gain confidence in using them. The course length is around 10-12km (around 6 miles).

All weather fun!
The courses take place on forest tracks, paths and also ventures onto more open forest countryside and through woodland that at times may be loose, slippery and muddy. It is advisable to wear walking boots or sturdy walking shoes and be equip for all expected weather conditions. During very wet weather better surfaced tracks and paths are used where possible.

Equipment provided.

Proper maps and real compasses are provided for all courses and you can take home a handy timing card and compass use crib so you don't have to remember everything. Just bring yourself and enjoy.

Still want to know more? Just securemail and ask.

Tab 3

Day one courses start from from Wilverley Plain car park, Standing Hat car parks in the New Forest. Day two courses start from Fritham car park in the New Forest.

Wilverley Plain and Standing Hat car parks are very close to the villages of Brockenhurst and Burley and not far from Lymington and Lyndhurst. Fritham is close to Brook and Bradshaw and can be reached easily from the A31/M271 junction and is also easily reached from villages in the New Forest.
If you are coming from further a field they are all very central and easily reached from Christchurch and Bournemouth to the south west, Salisbury and Wiltshire area to the north and from Hampshire, Surrey or London using the main road network. Do allow enough time to travel across the forest and download or check directions before you come!

New Forest Navigation map reading courses start from New Forest car parks that are all easily reached by car from New Forest villages and surrounding towns and main transport links and road network for those coming across Hampshire from London or South East or West England.

One and two day map reading courses can also be arranged to start from the centre of Brockenhurst, Lyndhurst or Ashurst railway station, Burley village and those close to Ringwood and Fordingbridge. Additionally a lift can be arranged if you arrive public transport or are using public transport to travel within the forest. Courses for groups, corporate or special events can start at or close to your venue. Ask securemail to find out more.

Need more information?

Course Gift Vouchers available for all courses

Dear Nigel,  
Just wanted to say thank you for your teaching on the recent map reading course.
Neal and I put our new skills to the test during a weekend walking in the Black Mountains. We were pleased to put all the skills into practice and we didn't get lost once! Neither did we argue over the Map!
Thanks again Ellie and Neal - Two day map reading April 2017

Navigation training start locations

New Forest Navigation courses start from Forestry Commission car parks. You can view the actual location of each on the maps below (tip - use the satellite view to see the actual layout of the car park). You can view and download schematic maps and directions to the all car parks on the course locations and directions page. Please allow plenty of time to travel safely across the New Forest as much of it is on 40mph speed limit roads.
You can view every start location here

Wilverley Plain and Anderwood car park - Location and directions

Choose a location
Wilverley Plain car park
Brockenhurst, New Milton, Hampshire, BH25 5TZ
50.806672, -1.638379
Anderwood car park
Anders wood forestry car park, Lyndhurst Road, Burley, BH24 4HS

Standing Hat car park, Brockenhurst - Location and directions

Choose a location
Standing Hat car park
Brockenhurst, Hampshire, SO42 7QJ
50.831318, -1.554447

Fritham car park (Near Royal Oak) - Location and directions

Choose a location
Fritham cap park
Fritham, Hampshire SO43 7HJ
50.925766, -1.672744

The map marker shows the actual position of the car park. The postcode directions are to the general area ONLY. You SHOULD check and verify the actual location and get directions BEFORE travelling to the New Forest!

Map reading courses gift vouchers

Vouchers can be bought for all map reading courses and outdoor skills courses.

Gift a voucher and let the recipient book a course on a date that suits them.

Vouchers can be now bought now and do not have to be used until 31 July 2019

New Forest Navigation map reading courses start from car parks and villages within the New Forest National Park. The New Forest is located in south Hampshire, South East England. It is easily accessible from the surrounding counties of Dorset, Wiltshire, Surrey, Sussex and London. No need to travel to Snowdnia or Peak District with the New Forest on your door step!
Course start locations are reached easily from all New Forest villages and towns, which all have a huge range of accommodation options; Brockenhurst, Lyndhurst, Lymington, Christchurch, Fordingbridge, Ringwood, Burley, Sway and further afield at Bournemouth, Southampton and Salisbury.

New Forest Navigation

Learn Map Reading and how to use a Compass courses in the New Forest.
New Forest National Park, Hampshire, UK