Winter Navigation With Map & Compass

9:00 AM  –  1:00 PM

Donner Summit SNO-PARK

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  • Fitness level  2: Easy Active
  • Skill level  2: Intermediate
  • Minimum age: 14
  • Group size: 8

Head out into the snow for a day of hands-on navigation training with our REI Outdoor School. You will learn to see three dimensions of the land in the two dimensions of a topographic map. We will don our snowshoes and teach you how to read contour lines, landmarks and other map features. We'll also talk about magnetic north, true north, and magnetic variation, and help you make sense of it all. From there, you'll learn how to take a bearing from the terrain and your map so that you can triangulate your position and plan a route even in the snow. Maps and compasses will be provided. Prior snowshoeing experience is recommended (Introduction to Snowshoeing Class or equivalent skills). This is not a snowshoeing skills class and students should be able to snowshoe for 2-3 miles.

  • Learn how to read topographic lines and other basic features on a map
  • Learn how to orient a map to match the environment both with and without a compass
  • Learn basic compass features and how to utilize the map with a compass
  • Learn how to plot your current position on your map
  • Use a map & compass to navigate to new locations even when the trail is covered in snow
  • Build confidence in your navigation skills.


Please arrive 10-15 minutes prior to the start time for parking and paperwork considerations. CA SNO-PARK Pass REQUIRED for each vehicle, available for purchase at any Sacramento Area REI location or online at Daily Pass: $5; Season Pass: $25. Limited, complimentary group transportation is available from REI Roseville; registration required at the link below. Questions, contact

Donner Summit SNO-PARK

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CA SNO-PARK Pass REQUIRED for each vehicle, available for purchase at your Sacramento Area REI. A daily pass is $5 or a seasonal pass is $25. Port-A-Potties available. No water on site.