The Gea Org.

Navigation with Distance, Time, and Pace (XII)

By Robert Finlay of KayakLakeMead.com

Edited by Federico Ferrero


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3. Mountain Biking Fast...Down a Road...and Keeping Track of Position:

You are at the intersection indicated by the START and you want to get to the END.

You are going to ride up Lovell Canyon Road. You need to know where that right-turn is (orange arrow).

Distance: Count the 1 km squares. I count 4.5. Multiply by a "fudge" factor of 1.3, this is an improved road (paved actually) and 1.3 works well for a good road with a few curves. Estimated distance is 6.0 km. If you measure the distance carefully I think you'll get 5.9 km.

Pace: It is uphill the whole way but if you keep your speed at 9.0 km/hr then your...

Time: will be 40 min.

Start looking for the turn at about 5.75 km, in other words, always gives yourself a "window" for any errors in distance determination or odometer calibration.

However, in this case there is a turn at 5.75 km that is not "our" turn. How can we rule it out? (1) Most obviously it is a 4-way turn and not a 3-way, but be careful with that. Old dirt roads that appear on the map may not in fact be there any more and, conversely and even more common, roads that you find on the ground may not be mapped. (2) It is at a lower elevation, but I don't think significantly so. (3) ! Look closely, it appears to go up a gully, whereas the turn we want appears to go up a ridge with the gully on the right.

Important: Mark your turn and mark all the intersections that are close to your target. You may want to mark all intersections and other prominent landmarks such as schools, mines, power-grid substations, etc. As you ride by those intersections and landmarks you will be able to account for them; this will "clue" you in to the terrain; in case you forgot to check your watch before you started riding, or your odometer suddenly just shows 0.00, or it is dark, or you're in a forest, or a canyon and you cannot get a visual on any other terrain.





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