Lost? Follow that satellite dish!

I read a great article on the BBC recently that was giving tips on finding your way in a city. Did you know that most UK satellite dishes (all belonging to the same provider) point roughly south east? They’re pointing at the same geostationary satellite, fixed at the same point over Earth.

We’re all becoming increasingly reliant on having a GPS signal to know our location – whether it’s to find your nearest cinema/petrol station/restaurant on a mobile phone, following the soothing tones of your satnav, or plotting a route for your next countryside walk. But what happens when you lose your GPS signal, or your battery dies on the device you’re using? What are the best tips for navigation?

Of course, we would recommend that you take a paper map with you as back-up when planning any outdoor activities. It’s also good practice to have a road atlas in the car, and to have researched a new journey before setting off anyway. But what other ways are there to find your way without a map?

We’ve posted blogs recently on navigating via the stars and the sun and guides to using a compass, and you now know the BBC’s tip on checking out the satellite dishes – but how else would you navigate? Let us know.

Image: flickr, wayneandwax

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2 Responses

  1. The BBC’s programme on natural navigation that was on recently suggested also: (1) the way the clouds are going – particularly useful when emerging from the tube, and (2) the flow of people at peak times – to/from major hubs like stations. I’ve also found house numbers work sometimes – as they (used to be, at least) numbered ascending from the main post office – likely the centre of a town/city. But this isn’t reliable.

  2. Hi Gemma,

    Glad you enjoyed that piece. I wasn’t expecting a massive reaction, but it went a bit nuts when that was published. It was the 6th most viewed story on the whole BBC website that day and comments were switched off after over 300 in a few hours!

    All the best,


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