GPS Navigation Techniques          

Date/Time: Saturday, April 18, 9 am – 4 pm, Sunday, April 19, 9am – 4 pm, Monday
Meet at: Black Rock Visitor Center
Fee: $110 JTNPA/PINE/OSHER member $120 non members
Instructor: David Pylman, Joshua Tree Search and Rescue Trainer
Hike Level: Moderate

Learn how to use your Global Positioning System (GPS) device with David Pylman, navigation specialist, in the Mojave Desert of Joshua Tree National Park. GPS units grow in popularity each year as more and more people get access to this high powered route-finding tool. But GPS technology can be challenging for beginners as well as experiences users! David will explain how to best utilize GPS in wilderness navigation during this two-day field class.

  • Saturday will be class room review of Global Mapping Systems, Topographic Maps, Compass essentials, with several field exercises.  You will also begin learning how to setup your GPS device for wilderness travel.  Bring your bag lunch and refreshments.
  • Sunday  you will continue to learn the finer points of your GPS device, and begin putting into practice the Goto and WhereTo features;  the Tracking and Backtrack features; and the route building and finding features with practical field exercises. Bring your bag lunch and refreshments
  • Required Class Materials
  • Sighting/Orienteering Compass with adjustable declination and sighting mirror, such as the following models: 
    • Brunton Type 15
    • K & R Sherpa
    • K & R Alpin
    • Silva Ranger 515 CL
    • Suunto MC2D
    • Suunto MC2G
  • GPS device:  must be GARMIN brand, and one of the following models:
    • eTrex Vista
    • eTrex Legend
    • eTrex 10, 20, or 30
    • GPSMap Mapseries
    • Oregon
    • Montana
  •  two extra sets of batteries

Don’t miss this interactive class and the knowledge to add GPS technology to your navigation toolbox!   Participants need to provide their own GPS devices.

Download the course outline:  GPS Navigation Techniques SP2015

Please review this pdf package that contains pertinent information about your class, the Joshua Tree National Park, camping reservations and lodging in the area around the park:  enrollment attachments.


If you are a member of JTNPA/PINE you will get a $10 discount off every Desert Institute class. If you are not a member you can become one here.

Please take the time to review our General Class Information and Fitness Levels before registering.


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