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Adventurers Need Basic Map Skills, Like Latitude and Longitude

By: Tom Malone



It may seem obvious, but map-reading skills can make (or break) even a well-planned adventure. Whether charting the distant from Point A to Point B, or showing someone where your latest adventure occurred, every traveler needs to refresh these skills.

Latitude
  • Measures North and South
  • Runs East and West
  • Like the steps of a “Ladder”.
  • Lines of Latitude are called Parallels
  • The Equator marks 0 degrees
    • Everything North of the Equator measures North latitude degrees
    • Everything South of the Equator marks South latitude degrees.
  • Lines of latitude never intersect (cross-over)
  • Comes first when writing coordinates


Longitude
  • Measures East and West
  • Runs North and South
  • “Long” lines
  • The Prime Meridian marks 0 degrees
    • Everything West of the Prime meridian (until 180 Degrees) measures West longitude degrees
    • Everything East of the Prime Meridian (until 180 Degrees) measures East longitude degrees
  • Lines of longitude do intersect (cross-over)
  • Comes second when writing coordinates


How to Find Absolute Location Using Latitude & Longitude
  • Start with a World Political Map
  • Locate starting point of Latitude (Equator - 0 Degrees)
  • Using given coordinates, move your finger in the direction of Latitude cardinal direction (EX: 30 Degrees North, move North of the Equator)
  • Stop when you reach the number of degree given (EX: Stop at 30 Degrees North)
  • Locate starting point of Longitude (Prime Meridian - 0 Degrees)
  • Using given coordinates, move your finger in the direction of Longitude cardinal direction (EX: 120 Degrees West, move West of the Prime Meridian)
  • Stop when you reach the number of degree given (EX: Stop at 120 Degrees West)
  • Plot the point or locate the city
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