Backcountry Navigation with a Map and Compass

7:00am12:00pm PST
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$79 for REI Members

$109 for non-members

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  • Fitness level 2 Easy Active
  • Minimum age 14
  • Group size 12 people
  • Instructor REI Experiences Guide

During this class, our instructors will help you understand a topographic map, proper use of your compass, and how to put the two together. You'll learn about magnetic north, true north, and magnetic variation (declination). After covering these fundamentals, you'll get time to practice taking a bearing from the terrain and your map so that you can make sense of your position and plan a route. This engaging course is a great introduction to outdoor navigation and map reading! Please arrive 5-10 minutes prior to the start time listed and come prepared with personal snacks and water. Participants under 18 must be accompanied registered adult.

  • Confidently comprehend a topographic map
  • Learn to calculate declination
  • Use a compass to take a bearing, plot your position on a map, and develop a route plan.

What to bring with you


This class will take place at Reimers Ranch Park where there is a $5 cash entrance fee. You will receive an email from our team with specific details 48 hours before your course.

Map image of Reimers Ranch Park

More directions and information

Reimers Ranch Park has a $5/vehicle entry fee. You can use your park pass at any other Travis County park that day. Camping is not available. For REI Rock Climbing classes, you will meet the instructors at the North Bank parking lot, which is the last parking lot on the park road. For Map & Compass classes, meet the instructors at the Mountain Biking parking lot. For questions, please email or call 877-819-3811 Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm.