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Ориентирование на местности

Orientation (lat. Rising; meaning the rising sun and generally the east) determining its location relative to the elements of the surrounding space. Orienteering includes determining your location relative to the sides of the horizon and prominent terrain objects (landmarks), maintaining a given or selected direction of movement, and understanding the location of landmarks, lines, and other objects on the terrain.

The essence and methods of orientation

When performing many combat missions, the actions of commanders are inevitably associated with orientation on the ground. The ability to navigate is necessary, for example, on a march, in battle, in reconnaissance to maintain the direction of movement, target designation, plotting landmarks, targets and other objects on a map (terrain map), unit and fire control. The knowledge and skills in orientation, consolidated by experience, help to more confidently and successfully carry out combat missions in various conditions of a combat situation and in unfamiliar terrain.

Orienteering - this means determining your location and directions to the sides of the horizon relative to surrounding local objects and landforms, find the indicated direction of movement and accurately withstand it on the way. When navigating in a combat situation, they also determine the location of the unit relative to their troops and enemy troops, the location of landmarks, the direction and depth of action.

The essence of orientation - orientation on the ground can be general and detailed.

General orientation is the approximate determination of their location, direction of movement and the time required to reach the final destination. This orientation is most often used on the march, when the car’s crew does not have a map, but uses only a pre-compiled diagram or a list of settlements and other landmarks along the route. In order to maintain the direction of movement in this case, it is necessary to constantly monitor the movement time traveled by the distance determined by the speedometer of the car, and control the settlement (list) of the passage of settlements and other landmarks.

Detailed orientation is to accurately determine your location and direction of movement. It is used when orienting on a map, aerial photographs, ground-based navigation devices, when moving in azimuth, plotting on a map or diagram of explored objects and goals, when determining the milestones reached and in other cases.

When orienting on the terrain, the simplest methods of orientation are widely used: by compass, celestial bodies and signs of local objects, as well as a more complicated way - orientation by map.


Orienteering, this means finding directions to the cardinal directions (north, south, east and west) and determine your location. To find directions in the cardinal directions, first determine the north-south direction; after which, facing the north, the determining one will have a right - east, a left - west. The cardinal directions are usually found by the compass, and in the absence of it - by the Sun, Moon, stars and some signs of local objects.

By the sun and the clock

Ориентирование на местности
Determination of the sides of the horizon by the Sun and hours, up to 13 hours and after 13 hours

In a horizontal position, the clock is set so that the hour hand is directed towards the Sun. The angle between the clockwise and the direction of the number 1 on the watch dial is divided in half by a straight line that indicates the direction to the south. Before noon, it is necessary to halve the arc (angle) that the arrow must go before 13.00, and in the afternoon - the arc that it passed after 13.00.

Across the polar star

Ориентирование на местности
Determining the sides of the horizon by the Polar Star

The North Star is always in the north. To find the North Star, you must first find the Ursa Major constellation, reminiscent of a bucket made up of seven fairly bright stars, then mentally draw a line through the two extreme right stars of the Ursa Major, on which to postpone the distance between these extreme stars five times, and then at the end of this line we find the North Star, which, in turn, is located in the tail of another constellation called Ursa Minor. Facing the North Star, we will get a direction to the north.

On the moon

Ориентирование на местности
Determining the sides of the horizon by the moon and clock.

For a rough orientation, you need to know that in the first quarter of the summer in the summer at 19 o’clock the moon is in the south, at 1 o’clock in the west, in the last quarter in the east, at 7 o’clock in the south.

Full moon

With a full moon at night, the sides of the horizon are determined in the same way as by the Sun and the clock, and the Moon is taken as the Sun. The full moon is opposed to the sun in the sky, so in the south it can be exactly at midnight. The difference on the dial at 12 o’clock is not visible, and the determination of the sides of the horizon can be carried out in the same way as in the case of the Sun. The full moon appears infrequently in the sky, but the incomplete moon can help determine the sides of the horizon, although it is difficult. First you need to notice the time on the clock. Then mentally divide the diameter of the moon into 12 parts and evaluate how many such parts are contained in the diameter of the visible crescent of the moon. If it arrives (the right half of the disk is visible), then the resulting number must be subtracted from the hour of observation. If the moon is waning (the left half of the disk is visible), then add. The sum or difference will show the hour when the Sun will be in the direction of the Moon. We direct to the crescent of the moon that place on the dial that corresponds to the newly acquired time, and, mentally replacing the moon with the sun, we find the north-south direction. So it can be determined by sunrise and sunset. At mid-latitudes in the summer, the Sun rises in the northeast and sets in the southwest. Only March 21 and September 23 - on the days of the equinoxes, the sun just rises in the east and sets in the west.

Cardinal points The first quarter (visible, the right half of the disk of the moon) Full moon (the entire disk of the moon is visible) The last quarter (the left half of the disk of the moon is visible)
In the east - 19 hours 01 hour (nights)
On South 19 hours 01 hour (nights) 07 hours
In the West 01 hour (nights) 07 hours

Identification of directions to the sides of the horizon by signs of local objects

On the sun

The places of rising and setting the Sun are different for the seasons: in winter, the Sun rises in the southeast, and sets in the southwest; in summer, the Sun rises in the northeast, and sets in the northwest; in spring and autumn, the Sun rises in the east, and sets in the west. At noon, the sun is always in the south. The shortest shadow from local objects happens at 13 o’clock, and the direction of the shadow from vertically located local objects at this time will indicate the north.

On a stump

Annual rings are wider on the south side.

Over the anthill

At the anthill the southern slope is more gentle.

On a freestanding tree

Such a tree has shorter branches on the north side, and a lichen on the trunk.

By constellations Ursa Major and Ursa Minor

In the constellation Ursa Minor, there is a bright North Star. It can only be seen in the Northern Hemisphere. She always points north.

Along the trunk of pines

After rain, the trunks of pines usually blacken on the north side, since there a thin secondary crust begins to develop earlier, blackening from the water. In dry and hot weather, more tar is released from the south side of the pine trunks. These signs should be used carefully. It would be good if the direction was confirmed by other signs.

By vegetation

In the northern outskirts of the meadow, grass is denser in spring than in the southern. Vegetation characteristic of the southern latitudes will be found on the southern slopes of the ravines.

Along the clearings in the forest

They are usually cut in the north-south or west-east direction.

By religious buildings

The altars and chapels of the Orthodox and Lutheran churches are facing east, and the bell towers are facing west. Catholic altars face west. Buddhist pagodas and monasteries face south.

By sound

If you get lost, then you need to stop and listen. Some sounds will help you: the noise of the car, the movement of the electric train, the hoot of the ship. Audibility can deteriorate in hot sunny weather, especially when headwinds, 1 in the forest, in the sand, on loose fresh snow. Many sounds are inaudible behind an obstacle: behind a mountain, a hill.

By melting snow

It is known that the south side of objects heats up more than the north side, respectively, and snow melting from this side is faster. This can be clearly seen in early spring and during thaws in winter on the slopes of ravines, holes in trees, snow adhering to stones.

By the shadow

At noon, the direction of the shadow (it will be the shortest) indicates north. Without waiting for the shortest shadow, you can navigate in the following way. Insert a stick about 1 meter long into the ground. Mark the end of the shadow. Wait 10-15 minutes and repeat the procedure. Draw a line from the first position of the shadow to the second and extend one step further than the second mark. Become the toe of your left foot opposite the first mark, and your right foot at the end of the line that you drew. Now you are facing north.

In local subjects

Ориентирование на местности
Identification of the sides of the horizon by signs of local objects.

It is known that resin protrudes more on the southern half of the trunk of a coniferous tree, the ants arrange their dwellings on the southern side of the tree or bush and make the southern slope of the anthill more gentle than the northern one. The bark of birch and pine on the north side is darker than on the south, and tree trunks, stones, rock ledges are densely covered with moss and lichens. In large tracts of cultivated forest, you can determine the sides of the horizon by clearings, which, as a rule, are cut strictly along the north-south and east-west lines, as well as by inscriptions of the numbers of quarters on poles installed at the intersections of clearings. On each such column in the upper part and on each of the four faces are affixed numbers - the numbering of the opposite quarters of the forest; the edge between the two faces with the smallest numbers shows the direction to the north (the numbering of forest blocks in the CIS goes from west to east and further south).

By buildings

The buildings, which are rather strictly oriented along the horizon, include churches, mosques, synagogues. The altars and chapels of the Christian and Lutheran churches face east, the bell towers west. The lowered edge of the lower crossbar on the dome of the Orthodox Church is facing south, and the raised edge is facing north. Altars of Catholic churches are located on the west side. The doors of Jewish synagogues and Muslim mosques are facing approximately north, their opposite sides are directed: mosques - to Mecca in Arabia, lying on the meridian of Voronezh, and synagogues - to Jerusalem in Palestine, lying on the meridian of Dnepropetrovsk. Idols, pagodas, Buddhist monasteries with facades facing the south. Exit from yurts is usually done to the south. In rural houses, more windows in the living quarters are cut through from the south side, and the paint on the walls of buildings from the south side fades more and has a stained color.


  • the bark of most trees is coarser and darker on the north side, thinner and more elastic (lighter at the birch) - on the south;
  • in pine, the secondary (brown, cracked) bark on the north side of the trunk rises higher than on the southern side;
  • on coniferous trees, resin accumulates more abundantly from the south side;
  • annual rings on fresh tree stumps are denser on the north side;
  • on the north side, trees, stones, wooden, tiled and slate roofs are covered earlier and more abundantly with lichens, fungi;
  • anthills are located on the southern side of trees, stumps and bushes, in addition, the southern slope of the anthills is gentle, the northern is steep;
  • berries and fruits earlier redden (turn yellow) on the south side;
  • in summer, the soil near large stones, buildings, trees and bushes is drier from the south, which can be determined by touch;
  • in detached trees, crowns are more magnificent and thicker on the south side;
  • snow thaws faster on the southern slopes, as a result of thawing on the snow, barbs (spikes) are formed, directed to the south;
  • the altars of the Orthodox churches, chapels and Lutheran picks are facing east, and the main entrances are located on the west side;
  • the raised end of the lower cross of the cross of the churches faces north

Determining the sides of the horizon, magnetic azimuths, horizontal angles and the direction of movement of the compass

Compass directions

Ориентирование на местности
Determining the sides of the horizon by compass

Using the compass, you can most conveniently and quickly determine the north, south, west and east. To do this, give the compass a horizontal position, release the arrow from the clamp, and let it calm down. Then the arrow-shaped end of the arrow will be directed north.

To determine the accuracy of the deviation of the direction of movement from the direction to the north or to determine the position of points of the terrain with respect to the direction to the north and count them, the compass is marked with divisions of which the lower ones are indicated in degree measures (the graduation price is 3 °) and the upper divisions of the goniometer in tens of "thousandths." Degrees are counted clockwise from 0 to 360 °, and divisions of the goniometer counterclockwise from 0 to 600 °. Zero division is located at the letter “C” (north), there is also a triangle glowing in the dark, which replaces the letter “C” in some compasses.

Luminous dots are plotted under the letters “B” (east), “Yu” (south), “3” (west). On the movable cover of the compass there is a sighting device (sight and front sight), against which luminous indicators are mounted, which serve to indicate the direction of movement at night. In the army, the most common compass of the Andrianov system and the artillery compass.

When working with a compass, you should always remember that strong electromagnetic fields or closely spaced metal objects deflect the needle from its correct position. Therefore, when determining compass directions, it is necessary to move 40-50 m away from power lines, railway tracks, military vehicles and other large metal objects.

Ориентирование на местности
The relative position of the sides of the horizon.

The determination of directions to the sides of the horizon by compass is as follows. The sight of the sighting device is set to zero scale, and the compass is in a horizontal position. Then the brake of the magnetic needle is released and the compass is turned so that its northern end coincides with the zero reference. After that, without changing the position of the compass, a distant landmark is noticed by sight through the rear sight and front sight, which is used to indicate the direction to the north.

The directions to the sides of the horizon are interconnected, and if at least one of them is known, the rest can be determined.

In the opposite direction with respect to the north will be south, on the right-east, and on the left-west.

Compass magnetic azimuth

Ориентирование на местности
Determination of magnetic azimuth of a direction to a separate tree

The magnetic azimuth of the direction is determined using a compass.

At the same time, the brake of the magnetic needle is released and the compass is turned in a horizontal plane until the northern end of the arrow is set against zero scale division.

Then, without changing the position of the compass, set the sighting device so that the line of sight through the rear sight and front sight coincides with the direction to the object. The reading of the scale against the front sight corresponds to the magnitude of the determined magnetic azimuth of the direction to the local object.

The azimuth of the direction from the point of standing to the local object is called the direct magnetic azimuth. In some cases, for example, to find the return path, a reverse magnetic azimuth is used, which differs from the direct one by 180 °. To determine the inverse azimuth, you need to add 180 ° to the direct azimuth if it is less than 180 °, or subtract 180 ° if it is more than 180 °.

Compass horizontal angle detection

First, the front sight of the compass sighting device is set to zero scale. Then, by turning the compass in the horizontal plane, the line of sight is aligned through the rear sight and front sight with the direction to the left object (landmark).

After that, without changing the position of the compass, the sighting device is transferred in the direction of the right object and a countdown is taken on a scale that will correspond to the value of the measured angle in degrees.

When measuring the angle in thousandths, the line of sight is combined first with the direction to the right object (landmark), since the thousandth count increases counterclockwise.

Orienteering with a map

Ориентирование на местности

On any map above is always north, below is south, right is east, left is west. To rotate the map according to the cardinal points, you need to put a compass with a diameter of SJ on the western (eastern) frame of the map or on the vertical line of the kilometer grid of the map, with the letter C in the direction of the northern frame. Then, freeing the compass needle, rotate the map with the compass until the north end of the arrow is set against the letter C.

The following methods are used to orient the map:

  1. Orientation of the map along the lines of the terrain. In this case, you need to go on the road (clearing, riverbank or other line), find it on the map and then turn the map until the direction of the road (line) on the map matches the direction of the road (line) on the ground, then check so that objects located to the right and left of the road (line) are on the ground from the same sides as on the map.
  2. Compass orientation of the map is used mainly in areas difficult to navigate (in the forest, in the desert, in the tundra), as well as in poor visibility. Under these conditions, the compass determines the direction to the north, and then the map is rotated (guided) by the upper side of the frame towards the north so that the vertical line of the grid of the map coincides with the longitudinal axis of the magnetic needle of the compass.
Ориентирование на местности
The relative position of the sides of the horizon.

The compass map can be oriented more accurately taking into account the declination of the magnetic needle. To do this, additionally turn it so that the northern end of the magnetic needle deviates from the 0 ° bar of the compass scale by the amount of the direction correction indicated in the lower left corner of this map sheet.

It should be remembered that the compass cannot be used near iron objects, military equipment and power lines, since they cause the deflection of the magnetic needle. It is easier to determine the point of your standing on the map when you are on the ground next to the landmark (local object) shown on the map. In this case, the location of the symbol will coincide with the standing point.

If there are no such landmarks at the standing point on the ground, then it can be determined in one of the following ways:

  1. On nearby local objects (relief). To do this, it is necessary to orient the map and identify 1-2 local objects on it and, accordingly, on the terrain, determine its location on the ground visually with respect to these objects and visualize its point of standing on the map as well.
  2. Measuring distances. Moving along the road (along a clearing in the forest or another line on the terrain) indicated on the map, measure the distance traveled from the nearest landmark in pairs of steps (along the speedometer of the car). To determine your standing point, you just need to postpone the measured (traveled) distance on the scale on the map in the desired direction.
  3. Serifs. When driving along a road (along a clearing, along a telegraph line), one can determine one's location by local objects located on the sides of the road. To do this, orient the map in the direction of the road and identify any landmark on it and on the ground.

Then attach a ruler or pencil to the selected landmark on the map and, without knocking down the orientation of the map, rotate the ruler around the symbol of the landmark until its direction coincides with the direction of the landmark. The place where the ruler crosses the road will be a standing point.

When driving on the road, when the standing point is not indicated on the map, it can be determined by a reverse notch in two or three directions. To do this, select 2-3 landmarks on the map and on the terrain. Then orient the map by compass and, similarly to the previous method, provide and draw along the ruler directions to each of the selected landmarks. The intersection of the drawn lines will be a standing point.

Map Orientation to Local Items

Knowing the position of local objects in relation to the countries of the world, it is already easy to determine your location on the ground and mark this point on the map.

To find an object visible on the map on the map, you need:

  • become a person to the specified subject;
  • orient the map;
  • find the point of standing on the map;
  • mentally draw a line from a standing point to a specified object on the ground;
  • in the direction of this line, look on the map for the symbol of this item.

To find the object indicated on the map on the ground, you need:

  • orient the map and find the point of its standing on it;
  • attach a ruler on the map to the standing point and to the symbol of the subject;
  • without knocking down the orientation of the map and without shifting the ruler, look at the imaginary extension of the line for the corresponding object on the ground.

In this case, it is necessary to take into account the distance to it, previously determined on the map.

The map is guided by a compass in a terrain poor in landmarks: in a forest, in desert-steppe regions, and also if a person does not even approximately know his standing point.

Azimuths and azimuth movement

Ориентирование на местности

The azimuth is the angle formed between the direction to any object of the area and the direction to the north.

Azimuths are counted from 0 to 360 ° clockwise.

Compass azimuth

To determine the azimuth on the ground, you must:

  • become a person in the direction of the subject on which you want to determine the azimuth;
  • orient the compass, i.e. bring its zero division (or letter C) under the darkened end of the compass needle;
  • turning the compass cover, aim the sighting device at the object;
  • read the azimuth value against the pointer of the sighting device facing the subject.

To determine the given azimuth on the ground, you must:

  • set the pointer of the compass sighting device a point above the division corresponding to the value of the given azimuth;
  • turn the compass so that the sight pointer is in front;
  • turn yourself with the compass until the zero point coincides with the north end of the arrow; the direction of the pointer of the sight and will be the direction in a given azimuth.

The combination of the line of sight with the direction to the object (target) is achieved by multiple translation of the view from the line of sight to the target and vice versa. It is not recommended to raise the compass to eye level, the measurement accuracy is reduced. The accuracy of measuring azimuths using the Andrianov compass is plus or minus 2-3 °.

Azimuth movement

To move along a given azimuth, you need:

  • to study on the map the area between the starting and ending points of movement and to outline a route that is easily recognizable by local objects;
  • draw the selected route on the map and determine the azimuths of all links of the route;
  • determine on the map the length of each link in steps (a pair of steps is on average 1.5 m);
  • write down all the data for the movement in the field book in the form of a table or a schematic drawing.

Arriving at the starting point, you should:

  • navigate by compass;
  • set the pointer of the movable ring of the compass against the reference equal to the azimuth of the first link of the route;
  • smoothly turn the compass until the zero division coincides with the north end of the arrow;
  • in this direction, select an object and go on it. Going to the subject, you need to check the orientation of the compass and continue on to the first turning point;
  • at the first turning point, you need to set the compass azimuth to the next turning point and move on it in the same way as from the starting point.

Determination of magnetic azimuths

Magnetic declination is either eastern with a "+" sign or western with a "-" sign. Knowing the magnitude and sign of the deviation, it is easy to combine the direction of one of the sides of the frame of the map sheet (western or eastern) with the direction of the true meridian. With the combined position of the sides of the map frame with the direction of the true meridian, the map will be oriented exactly.

In practice, they do this:

  • install a compass on one of the sides of the map so that the north-south line of the compass scale coincides with the direction of this side of the frame, and zero (C) on the scale is directed to the north side of the map frame;
  • release the brake of the compass needle and, when the needle calms down, turn the map until the needle becomes its northern end against zero division (C) of the compass scale;
  • rotate the map without shifting the compass so that the northern end of the arrow stands against the division corresponding to the magnitude and sign of declination for a given map sheet;
  • the card oriented in this way is fixed;
  • connect landmarks with straight lines;
  • set the compass on the line drawn between the landmark so that the north-south line of the scale coincides with this direction, and the zero division (C) is directed in the direction of movement;
  • when the arrow calms down, count down on a scale against the north end of the arrow;
  • subtract the obtained count from 360 °, this difference will be the magnetic azimuth.

Determination of coordinates and target designation

Ориентирование на местности

To indicate the approximate location of any object on the map, it is enough to indicate the square of the grid in which it is located.

The square is always indicated by the numbers of kilometer lines, the intersection of which forms the southwestern (lower left) corner. When specifying the square of the map, the rules are followed: first, two numbers are written signed on the horizontal line (on the western side), that is, the "X" coordinate, and then two numbers on the vertical line (south side of the sheet), that is, the "Y" coordinate. At the same time, "X" and "U" are not spoken.

For example, enemy tanks are detected. When transmitting a report by radiotelephone, the square number is pronounced: "eighty-eight zero two."

If the position of a point (object) needs to be determined more accurately, then full or shortened coordinates are used.

Work with full coordinates

It is required to determine the coordinates of the road sign in the square "8803" on a map with a scale of 1:50 000. Б.

First, determine what the distance from the lower horizontal side of the square to the road sign (600 m on the ground) is equal to.

In the same way, measure the distance from the left vertical side of the square (500 m).

Now, by digitizing kilometer lines, we determine the full coordinates of the object.

The horizontal line has the signature "5988" (X), adding the distance from this line to the road sign we get: X = 5988 600.

In the same way, we determine the vertical line and get 2403 500.

The full coordinates of the road sign are: X = 5988 600 m, Y = 2403 500 m.

Abbreviated coordinates: X = 88 600 m, Y = 03 500 m.

Another variant

The data of the Point (ZKP) are known: X = 90 850, Y = 02 550.

We carry out the calculation:

  1. First, determine the square in which the object is located.
  2. Set aside 850 m in a vertical line, draw a horizontal line from this point.
  3. Now, lay 550 m from the horizontal line below and draw a vertical line.

A special coordinator is made: a square with two mutually perpendicular scales.

Signatures on the scales show the number of hundreds of meters on a map scale. This square also works when determining the coordinates on the map and when plotting objects on the map.

The position of the target in the square is specified in two ways:

  • by “snail” - the square is divided into 9 parts, which are indicated by numbers, a figure specifying the location of the object inside the square is added when indicating the square, for example: ZKP - 5015 and 7;
  • by letters - the square is divided into 4 parts, which are denoted by letters, for example, a mortar battery - 4016-B.

Map detected object

Ориентирование на местности

This is one of the most important moments in the work. The accuracy of determining its coordinates depends on how accurately the object (target) is mapped. The error will cause the fire of weapons of destruction on an empty place.

Having discovered an object (target), a person must first accurately determine what is detected by various signs. Then, without stopping observing the object and not detecting yourself, put the object on the map.

There are several ways to plot an object on a map:

  • eyeballs;
  • direct serif.


An object is mapped if it is near a known landmark.

In direction and distance: orient the map, find the point of its standing on it, reconcile the direction of the detected object on the map and draw a line, determine the distance to the object, postpone this distance on the map from the standing point. The resulting point will be the position of the object on the map. If in this way it is graphically impossible to solve the problem (the enemy is interfering, poor visibility, etc.), then you need to accurately measure the azimuth to the object, then translate it into the directional angle and draw on the map from the standing point the direction in which to lay the distance to the object. To obtain the directional angle, it is necessary to add the magnetic declination of this card to the magnetic azimuth (directional correction).

Direct serif

In this way, an object is put on a map from 2 to 3 points from which you can monitor it. To do this, from each selected point, a direction to the object is drawn on the oriented map, then the intersection of the lines determines the location of the object.

Landmark distance measurement

Ориентирование на местности

The measurement of the distance between landmarks is performed as follows:

  • determine the length of the segments on the map with a compass or ruler;
  • using the scale of the map, they find out what distance correspond to segments on the ground;

For example, on a map with a scale of 1:25 000, the measured distance between two landmarks is 6.4 cm. The scale value is 250 m in 1 cm. The distance will be 250 x 6.4 = 1600 m . The data necessary for movement are made out in a specially prepared route diagram, or in the form of a table.

The movement begins with finding the desired azimuth of the direction of movement. In the direction of movement, it is desirable to select and remember the most distant reference point. In motion, a distance is counted (usually in pairs of steps).

If the landmark does not appear at this point, a sign is left at the exit point, or one or two fighters, and the landmark is sought in a radius equal to 0.1 of the distance traveled from the previous landmark.

In traffic, additional landmarks are used: power lines, rivers, roads, etc.

Determination of distances on the ground

Very often it is required to determine the distances to various objects on the ground, as well as evaluate their size.

The distances are most accurately and quickly determined by means of special devices (range finders) and range-finder scales of binoculars, stereo tubes, sights.

But due to the lack of devices, distances are often determined using improvised means and by eye.

The simplest methods for determining the distance (distance) to objects on the ground include the following:

  • eyeballs;
  • according to the linear sizes of objects;
  • by visibility (distinguishability) of objects;
  • according to the angular size of known objects;
  • by the sound.


This is the easiest and fastest way.

By reference An example of using the eye method for determining distances in pictures .

The main thing in it is the training of visual memory and the ability to mentally put off a well-represented permanent measure (50, 100, 200, 500 meters) on the ground.

Having fixed these standards in memory, it is easy to compare with them and evaluate distances on the ground.

When measuring distance by successively mentally putting aside a well-studied constant measure, it must be remembered that the terrain and local objects seem to be reduced in accordance with their removal, that is, when removed twice, the object will appear to be half as much.

Therefore, when measuring distances, mentally delayed segments (measures of terrain) will decrease according to distance.

In doing so, consider the following:

  • the closer the distance, the clearer and sharper the visible object seems to us;
  • the closer the subject, the more it seems;
  • Larger objects appear closer to small objects at the same distance;
  • a brighter object appears closer than a dark object;
  • brightly lit objects appear closer to dimly lit, located at the same distance;
  • during fog, rain, twilight, cloudy days, when the air is saturated with dust, the observed objects appear farther than on clear and sunny days;
  • the sharper the difference in the color of the object and the background on which it is visible, the more reduced the distance; for example, in winter, a snow field seems to bring closer dark objects on it;
  • objects on flat terrain seem closer than on hilly, distances that are defined through vast bodies of water seem especially reduced;
  • folds of terrain (river valleys, hollows, ravines), invisible or not fully visible by the observer, conceal the distance;
  • when observing lying objects appear closer than when standing;
  • when viewed from the bottom up - from the bottom of the mountain to the top, objects seem closer, and when viewed from top to bottom - further;
  • when the sun is behind us, the distance is hiding, shining in the eyes - it seems larger than in reality;
  • the fewer objects in the area under consideration (when observing through a body of water, an even meadow, steppe, arable land), the less distances appear.

The accuracy of the eye depends on the person’s training.

For a distance of 1000 m, the usual error ranges from 10-20%.

By linear dimensions

To determine the distance in this way, you must:

  • keep the ruler in front of you at arm's length (50-60 cm from the eye) and measure the apparent width or height of the object in millimeters to which you want to determine the distance;
  • divide the actual height (width) of the object, expressed in centimeters, by the apparent height (width) in millimeters, and multiply the result by 6 (a constant number), we get the distance.

For example, if a pillar with a height of 4 m (400 cm) is closed in a line of 8 mm, then the distance to it will be 400 x 6 = 2400; 2400: 8 = 300 m (actual distance).

To determine distances in this way, you need to know the linear dimensions of various objects well, or have this data at hand (on a tablet, in a notebook). The dimensions of the most frequently encountered objects must be remembered by a person, since they are also required for the method of measuring by angular magnitude, which is the main one for us.

By the visibility (visibility) of objects

With the naked eye, you can approximately determine the distance to targets (objects) by the degree of their visibility.

For example, if someone saw a pipe on the roof of a house, this means that the house is no more than 3 km, and not exactly 3 km.

When eye distance determination is desirable to use landmarks, the distances to which are already accurately known.

By angular value

To apply this method, you need to know the linear magnitude of the observed object (its height, length or width) and the angle (in thousandths) under which this object is visible.

For example, the height of the railway booth is 4 meters, the person sees it at an angle of 25 thousandths (the thickness of the little finger).

Then the distance to the booth will be 4 x 1000 = 4000 divided by 25, that is 160 meters.

To determine the angular value, you need to know that a segment of 1 mm, 50 cm from the eye, corresponds to an angle of two thousandths (recorded: 0-02).

From here it is easy to determine the angular value for any segments. For example, for a segment of 0.5 cm the angular value will be 10 thousandths (0-10), for a segment of 1 cm - 20 thousandths (0-20), etc.

The easiest way to memorize standard thousandths is by heart:
Angular values ​​(in thousandths of a distance)
Name of items / Size in thousandths

  • Thumb Thickness 40
  • Index finger thickness 33
  • Middle finger thickness 35
  • Little finger thickness 25
  • Cartridge for the width of the barrel of the cartridge case (7.62 mm) 12
  • Sleeve across the width of the body 18
  • Simple pencil 10-11
  • Match box length 60
  • Matchbox width 50
  • Matchbox height 30
  • Match Thickness 2

Sound Orientation

At night and in fog, when observation is limited or impossible at all (and on very rough terrain and in the forest, both at night and during the day), hearing comes to the aid of vision.

We must learn to determine the nature of sounds (that is, what they mean), the distance to the sources of sounds, and the direction from which they come.

If various sounds are heard, a person should be able to distinguish them from one another. The development of this ability is achieved by long training (in the same way, a professional musician distinguishes the voices of instruments in an orchestra).

Almost all sounds that indicate danger are made by humans.

Therefore, if a person hears even the slightest suspicious noise, he should freeze in place and listen.

It is possible that an enemy lurked near him.

If the enemy begins to move first, thereby giving out his location, then he will die first.

In the same way, an inexperienced or impatient hunter gives out his presence to the beast he is hunting for.

A skilled hunter is superior to animals in his endurance.

On a quiet summer night, even an ordinary human voice in an open space is heard far, sometimes for half a kilometer.

On a frosty autumn or winter night, all kinds of sounds and noises are heard very far.

This applies to speech, and steps, and tinkling utensils or weapons.

In foggy weather, sounds are also heard far, but their direction is difficult to determine.

On the surface of calm water and in the forest, when there is no wind, sounds are carried over a very long distance.

But the rain greatly drowns out the sounds.

The wind blowing towards a person brings sounds closer, and o removes from him.

He also sets the sound aside, creating a distorted idea of ​​the location of its source.

Mountains, forests, buildings, ravines, ravines and deep hollows change the direction of sound, creating an echo.

Generate echoes and water spaces, contributing to its spread over long distances.

The sound changes when its source moves along soft, wet or hard soil, along the street, along a country or field road, along a pavement or leafy soil.

Keep in mind that dry earth conveys sounds better than air.

Therefore, they listen, putting their ears to the ground or to the trunks of trees.

At night, sounds are well transmitted through the earth.

There are certain ways to help listen at night, namely:

  • lying: put your ear to the ground;
  • standing: lean one end of the stick against the ear, rest the other end against the ground;
  • leaning: standing, leaning slightly forward, shifting the center of gravity of the body to one leg, with a half-open mouth - the teeth are a conductor of sound.

A trained person during sneaking, if only he cherishes life, lies on his stomach and listens lying, trying to determine the direction of sounds.

This is easier to do by turning one ear in the direction where the suspicious noise is coming from.

In order to improve audibility, it is recommended that bent palms, a bowler hat, a pipe section be attached to the auricle.

To better listen to sounds, a person can put his ear to a dry board laid on the ground, which acts as a sound collector, or to a dry log dug into the ground.

If necessary, you can make a homemade water stethoscope.

To do this, use a glass bottle (or a metal flask) filled with water to the neck, which is buried in the ground to the water level in it. A tube (plastic) is tightly inserted into the cork, on which a rubber tube is put on. The other end of the rubber tube, equipped with a tip, is inserted into the ear.

To test the sensitivity of the device, hit the ground with your finger at a distance of 4 m from it (the sound from the impact is clearly heard through the rubber tube).

Orientation without a map

It consists in determining the sides of the horizon (directions to the north, east, south, west) and its location in the area relative to the assigned (selected) landmarks and is usually used in a limited area.

When determining the sides of the horizon by the compass, it is given a horizontal position, the brake of the arrow is released. After the cessation of vibrations, its luminous end will indicate the direction to the north.

Ориентирование на местности
The relative position of the sides of the horizon.

To determine the sides of the horizon by the Sun and the clock, you need to face the Sun. Put a clock showing local time so that the hour hand is pointing at the Sun. A line dividing the angle between the clockwise direction and the direction “1” in winter time or “2” in daylight saving time (only for the territory of the CIS) in half will show the direction to the south

On the moon and the clock are guided when the starry sky is poorly visible. On a full moon, the sides of the horizon can be determined by the moon using a clock in the same way as by the sun.

If the moon is incomplete (arriving or decreasing), then you need:

  • divide by eye the radius of the disk of the moon into six equal parts, determine how many such parts are contained in the diameter of the visible crescent of the moon, and notice the time on the clock;
  • subtract from this time (if the moon arrives) or add (if the moon decreases) as many parts as are contained in the diameter of the visible crescent of the moon.

The resulting amount or difference will show the hour when the Sun will be in the direction where the Moon is.

  • send to the moon the place on the dial that corresponds to the time obtained after adding or subtracting time. The bisector of the angle between the direction to the moon and for an hour (in winter time) or for two hours (in summer time) will show the direction to the south.

Time definition

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By moon and compass

At different times of the month, we observe from the Earth certain phases of the moon in the form of its full disk and its individual parts, containing a certain number of fractions of the diameter of the lunar disk. At the new moon, the lunar disk is not visible, since this is the beginning of the lunar month. From this moment, the moon begins to arrive, on its way to the full moon. In order to find out whether the Moon is arriving or departing, you need to look where its convex part is directed: if it is directed to the right of the central axis, then the Moon is born, and if the Moon is to the left.

We orient the compass so that the letter "C" is directed to the moon. We count the degrees from the northern end of the magnetic needle of the compass to this direction and get the azimuth to the moon.

Suppose it is 270 °. We divide them by 15 (15 - twenty-fourth of the circle - the magnitude of the Earth's rotation around its axis in 1 hour).

270: 15 = 18.

To this number we add 1 hour (maternity time introduced in the USSR by a special government decree in all zones of the country) (see Time zones):

18 + 1 = 19.

Next, we determine the number of shares in the visible part of the moon. Imagine that this part includes five shares in its diameter. A full disk contains 12 shares. By 19 we add 5, and it turns out 24 hours. This is the time that interests us. If the amount exceeds 24 hours, then the same amount must be subtracted from it.

Full moon

We do the same as in the first case. Imagine that the azimuth to the moon was 90 °.

90: 15 = 6; 6 + 1 = 7.

The disk of the moon is full, therefore 7 + 12 = 19.

Thus, at that moment the time is 19 hours.

The moon is waning

We do exactly the same as in the first two cases. Imagine that the azimuth to the moon is 165 °. Then 165: 15 = 11; 11 + 1 = 12. In the event of a waning moon, the fractions of its disk are not added, but subtracted.

12-8 (Fraction of the diameter of the moon) = 4. The lunar diameter fraction is 8.

By Sun and Compass

Ориентирование на местности
Ориентирование на местности

It is defined as follows. First, the azimuth of the Sun is measured (exactly the same as in the case of the Moon). Assume that it is 90 °.

90:15 (magnitude of the Earth's rotation in 1 hour) = 6;

6 + 1 (maternity time) = 7.

This means that it is now 7 o’clock. Suppose the azimuth is 180 °.

180: 15 = 12. 12 + 1 = 13.

This means that the time in the area is 13 hours.

Local time without hours

If the watch breaks or is lost, the local time can be recognized with relative accuracy by the compass, measuring the azimuth of the Sun. Having determined the azimuth, its value must be divided by 15 (the value of the solar rotation in 1 hour), the resulting number will indicate the local time at the time of counting. For example, the azimuth of the Sun is 180 °, which means that the time will be 12 hours.