Even in this high-tech GPS era, nothing replaces the value of a magnetized compass, a paper map and the understanding of how both can help you find your way when disaster strikes
UNDERSTANDING MAP AND COMPASS
When disaster strikes being able to pull up your GPS or google maps might not be an option and you need to have the skills to use a compass and paper map to navigate. This form of navigation is a dying art as we all have smartphones with GPS. This is an important survival skill that everyone should know.

So let's talk about the tools:

Map
Simple trail maps, the line-drawing variety often found in guidebooks, are useful for trip planning but NOT for navigation in the field. To safely find your way in wilderness terrain, you need the detail provided by topographic maps.
So know your maps:



Basic (planimetric) maps:
Examples:Traditional road maps; hand-sketched trail maps provided in visitor-center handouts.
Appearance: Flat, 2-dimensional, horizontal view of land areas showing roads, rivers and trails.
Attributes: They display points of interest (viewpoints, trail junctions) and routes that connect them, but offer no perspective on elevation variances. Thus they may make the distance to your destination appear to be modest, but they will not indicate if a deep valley or high ridge must be crossed in order to reach it.
Usage: OK for following a simple nature trail or making a short trip on a well-defined trail system, but insufficient for navigation should you head deep into the wilderness or step off an established path.



Topographic (topo) maps:
Examples: U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) quadrangles; customized commercial and downloadable map products.
Appearance:Areas of varying colors (or shades of gray) are overlaid with "squiggly" contour lines. Together they combine to give trained eyes a mental picture of the elevation variances in a landscape. Tightly spaced contour lines, for example, indicate steeper terrain.
Attributes: Their ability to convey the physical relief (the highs and lows) of a landscape enables you to orient yourself in the field by identifying prominent natural features—peaks, ridgelines or valleys. They also show the location of prominent man-made features such as roads and towns.
Usage: Always the best choice for any type of wilderness travel, from day trips to extended expeditions. Even if you're hiking on what you believe is an established, well-signed, can't-get-lost trail system, a topo map remains a helpful tool when you reach a viewpoint and want to identify peaks and landmarks with certainty.

Examples: U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) quadrangles; customized commercial and downloadable map products.
Appearance:Areas of varying colors (or shades of gray) are overlaid with "squiggly" contour lines. Together they combine to give trained eyes a mental picture of the elevation variances in a landscape. Tightly spaced contour lines, for example, indicate steeper terrain.
Attributes: Their ability to convey the physical relief (the highs and lows) of a landscape enables you to orient yourself in the field by identifying prominent natural features—peaks, ridgelines or valleys. They also show the location of prominent man-made features such as roads and towns.
Usage: Always the best choice for any type of wilderness travel, from day trips to extended expeditions. Even if you're hiking on what you believe is an established, well-signed, can't-get-lost trail system, a topo map remains a helpful tool when you reach a viewpoint and want to identify peaks and landmarks with certainty.

Compass
Every bugout bag needs at least a basic compass that includes a magnetized
needle floating within a liquid-filled housing. More sophisticated compasses
offer useful features such as a sighting mirror or declination adjustment,
but a basic compass includes all the essentials needed for
navigation—magnetized needle, rotating bezel ring, orienting lines,
index (degree) lines (north is 0°/360°, east is 90°, south is 180°
and west is 270°) and line-of-direction (orienting) arrow.
Why not rely exclusively on a watch or GPS receiver that includes a compass?
Because those are battery-reliant devices, and batteries may expire or
electronic circuitry can malfunction. You need the dependability of a compass that relies
only on earth's magnetic fields. 



I hope this article has helped you to understand the diffrent types of maps and a compass parts. In the next article we will discuss map reading and using a compass to navigate.