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Find Your Way Home: Location Guides For Every Occasion

Aug 18, 2007
Watching a TV show or movie where stranded castaways wander around uncharted places unsure how to get from one thing to another is lots of fun. Wandering around a city you have never been or a wilderness trail with no memory of how to get back is not. Being lost is one of the most frustrating, stressful and sometimes dangerous things. Fortunately, there are a number of gadgets and helps designed to help us stay on the right track.

It's All In The Wrist

It was a great day when someone discovered those things on our wrists could do more than tell us the time of day. One of the many wrist watch uses is to hold a compass. Many digital watches marketed by makers such as Timex, Seiko, Fossil, and Casio offer a full range of compass watches. They have digital chronograph, and a host of options for your activity such as thermometer, barometer and altimeter. For those who are more visual that digital and would like to follow an arrow instead of a set of numbers, Wenger makes a navigation compass watch that looks like a regular watch on the outside (because you probably don't get lost every day) but opens up to reveal a tradition needle-north compass underneath.

Follow That Arrow

Not everyone cares where north is, or has the ability to use a compass correctly. For those folks or people whose leanings are even more high-tech the hand held Global Positioning System (GPS) was designed. These handy machines are a life saver for pizza delivery drivers, travelers or anyone with an address in their pocket to a place they have never been. Simply type in the address or coordinates of the place you want to go and follow the arrow until you get there. Many GPS units come programmed with city maps and landmarks. If you are traveling outside of the United States check the model you have and make sure it is programmed for your area. With most GPS systems, you never have to tell them where you are, but you will have to tell them where you are going and a pre-mapped system is best for that. Still they are easy to use and if a detour or unexpected event takes you off your mapped path they provide good correction to get you where you're going.

Folding Up Tradition

Tradition can be a great thing and for folks who like the traditional folding map there are many available, some more easy to fold than others. From leather bound city atlases for the classic traveler, to tourist designed maps of city sections with amenities outlined on it, maps make short work out of making your way around an area. When you travel it's always good to buy a map and check the date to make sure when it was published. Strolling around Atlanta with a map you got in college may not do you much good as major cities tend to change, grow and reconstruct road ways.

Being lost simply isn't fun, but with any of these devices the means to find you way back home is already in your hands.
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