Step 2: Using the Shadow Tip Method:

- Take a stick and place it upright so you can see its shadow; the taller the stick the better
- Make sure the shadow is on clear, level ground
- Mark the ground at the edge of the shadow with something small like a pebble
- Wait 10 or 15 minutes then mark the edge of the shadow again
- Make a straight line between the two marks; this is a rough East-West line
- The first mark is the West mark and the second mark is the East mark

<p>this didnt help...</p>
<p>How is it &quot;possible&quot;, that your words (NH &quot;...<strong><em>The line DOWN the middle of the angle is pointing South; so the OPPOSITE direction is North</em>..</strong>.&quot;<br> and vice versus) in step 1 (Using an analog watch) is from my point of <br>understanding, actually contridicting the facts of your drawing...?!?</p>
Hmm, I suppose the word &quot;down&quot; wasn't very clear. What I meant to say was that the line between/in the middle of the angle points south.
<p>Cool!</p><p>Now there is no excuse for getting lost. :P</p>
<p>I just made public my improvement to the watch method (survivaltricks.wordpress.com by tonytran2015). Basically i use a watch tilted from vertical position rather than a horizontal watch. I found the method accurate and has relied on it for 10 years. I would appreciate if author M3G and readers can read it and give comments.</p>
<p>I use the North Star method at night. Here is how to find the North Star. <a href="http://earthsky.org/tonight/use-big-dipper-to-find-polaris-the-north-star" rel="nofollow">http://earthsky.org/tonight/use-big-dipper-to-find...</a></p><p>Once you have that, follow M3G's notes to line up 2 sticks and that will create your North South line. Make sure to mark the N/S line it on the ground so you will have it in the morning. I compared the star, vs shadow-tip, vs watch methods on a campout and they all lined up reasonably accurately to the reading of the compass.</p><p>Nice Instructable!</p>
Thanks for the comment!
<p>Even with a digital watch the watch method works just fine. The important thing is that the watch gives you an accurate time to work with. Everyone, even in this digital age, KNOWS what a clock looks like. I can visualize it in my mind and find north OR draw a circle on the ground mark the place where the small hand should be then where the 12 should be and the line that bisects between these points is the north south line. The watch is just a handy tool but the INFORMATION it gives you is the thing that counts.</p><p>GREAT Ible by the way. The third one was especially good I thought.</p>
Thanks for the comment! You are quite right; the information given by the watch is what's important.
And if it is cloudy and no sun, moon or stars can be seen, you can also look at moss on the base of trees, stones or buildings, this grows where the sun does not shine, so northern hemisphere north, southern south.
<p>Hmm I was taught the moss one <br>differently. As far as I know it grows best on the damp side of the tree; and <br>because rain falls straight down if not pushed sideways by the wind the <br>trees should be damp on the side the wind comes from. The moss should <br>then grow on the side where the wind comes from most often over time, for us <br>(middle europe) that should be the west side. </p><p>I think I have to go outside and check this right now ^^</p>
<p>moss does grow in the sun somewhat so this is not always accurate- I'd use the watch way or with the sticks, probably more accurate</p>
<p>These are all very good ways but another way is to use where the sun rises. It rises in the east and sets in the west so this is another way to find directions. </p>
or just ask your G.U.
Dude, this is frickin brilliant, man! Love it!!!
Wow haven't seen those in years! They used to teach that in Army Basic. Good one!
This is wonderful, I am going to use this information in my classroom, thank you!
You're welcome!
Northern Hemisphere, US or CA, urban or suburban environment, look to the satellite dishes.
I like the 3rd one, using two sticks to track the movement of a star. Very cool.
This is really, really clever. Anything which creates independence from gadgets (allowing that a pair of sticks doesn't constitute a &quot;gadget&quot;) is always good. Thank you for sharing.
Thank you!
i always know which way is north. no matter where i am, wierd. <br>
<br>What about finding the North Star? It seem to me that it would be much easier.
That would be easy, but not everyone knows where it is or what it looks like, and you can't see it in the Southern Hemisphere.
Hmmmm. Good point.
Well in the southern hemisphere you can find the south using the Southern Cross please read http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crux
would this work with the moon as well? <br>
Good question! I'm not sure, ill have to try it and let you know.
In my opinion (I haven't tested) this would not work, as the moon does not orbit based on our time, or rather our time is not based on it's orbit. The reason that the sun works for this, is that our time has been based around its position in our sky. The sun, at noon, is always in the same place (close), while the moon can rise, fall or be at its peak at any time of day or night, depending on its current phase.
Makes sense.
I recently quizzed a bunch of 11-12 yo. boys about direction finding, &amp; very few appreciated the sun's rise &amp; set compass positions... Sure - they knew where it got up locally, but when well away from home they were confused !
This is great, excellent for night hikes. This is the simplest way I have seen to correlate direction to star movement.
Thank you!

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