posted on Mar, 21 2011 @ 03:21 PM
Star and Flag to the people above who understand what True North is verus Magnetic North.
For those who don't understand that you **can** verify magnetic shift based on True North and current maps only need to review the following:
I am a military officer from Ft. Jackson, South Carolina, where we conduct basic training and teach soldiers the use of the compass through
"orienteering." Basic to this skill is understanding that our United States maps are gridded on True North, which is different than Magnetic North.
Part of the basic and advanced training is computing True North (Map North) from the compass reading, which is Magnetic North. In short, you take a
compass reading, and take a look at the map, which shows the variation between True and Magnetic North. For example, all U.S. military maps have a
degree of variation stated right on the map itself. For example, on some we use regularly at Ft. Jackson, it shows that the True North is 9 degrees
different than Magnetic North.
Now, we haven't changed out maps in 15 years for training. We use them weekly to get from point "A" to point "B" by computing and converting
Magnetic to True North. All you do is look at the map, see the 9 degree variation, take a compass reading, adjust 9 degrees, and plot your course
through the woods.
We physically have our soldiers traipse through the woods for miles to find things as small as a basketball hoop hanging from a tree, all based on
their computation and conversion from Magnetic North to True North. When they get to the basketball hoop, it has a paper punch hanging from it. They
must punch their destination and then plot a new course from Point B to Point C.....and so on.....
Now, I read the above, and there seems to be confusion.
Let me say this: Any shift in Magnetic North would mean our computations for going from Point A to Point B would be way off. Even a **slight**
change in Magnetic North would mean our soldiers would be off of their True North bearings, and thus, their maps, when it came time to find their
specific points in the woods. An error or change in Magnetic North more than just 1% would mean that they could not find their destination. Try
seeing a camoflauged basketball hoop hanging from a tree more than 200 yards away...2 football fields to see something that is difficult to see unless
you are underneath or within 5-10 feet. And yes, some of our points are that far away, and that hard to find.
In Columbia, South Carolina, Magnetic North and true North are identical to what they have been for the pat 15 years, givce or take 1 degree. I know
this because even a slight shift would result in our soldiers ending up lost in the woods, and not finding their paper punches.