Maps, bearings and triangles

Over the past few weeks we have been using compass bearings to find hidden markers. We know that a bearing is an angle measured from north.

In our latest orienteering adventure we have used bearings for a different purpose- making maps!

First we marked out a five metre line on the ground a few metres in front of the trees. This was drawn on our map as a 25cm line- it seemed sensible to represent every metre on the ground with 5cm.

Next we took compass bearings on the tree from both ends of the 5m line. The same bearings were used to draw lines from both ends of the 25cm line on the map. The tree was marked where the lines crossed. Each time we drew the bearing lines on the map we found that we had formed a triangle. Triangles have been used to find the position of objects since the early days of map making.