There is no doubt that modern technologies make life (and travel!) easier. Adventure riding has been transformed since the dawn of the Internet and satellite navigation: finding your way around the world is now practically effortless. Invest in the newest GPS unit, set your route, and go. But is navigation really that simple?
Roger McKinlay, a satellite specialist and the Immediate Past President of the Royal Institute of Navigation in London, argues that humans will always be smarter than machines and relying solely on your GPS isn’t the best policy when traveling.
Tristan Gooley, Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, explorer, and natural navigation author, says natural navigation – orienting yourself using the sun, stars, plants, animals, and water – is something that can enrich a journey in new and exciting ways.
Bill Eakins, a veteran adventure rider and a scout and communications specialist for Butler Maps, claims that using your own sense of direction and clues from your environment brings back a sense of discovery, while Matthew Brummet, an avid motorcyclist and wilderness survival guide, notes that the most common reason people get lost is that they simply aren’t paying attention to their surroundings.
So what’s your best bet when it comes to planning your journey, navigating the world, and getting your bearings when lost?