How to: Use Your Watch as a Compass to Find Cardinal Directions

created at: 08/21/2013

If you’re planning to do any traveling soon, be sure to add another essential item to your packing list: a watch. Cause – heads up, Boy Scouts – you can use an analog watch to find your way around, whether in the middle of a new city or in the depths of the backcountry.    Andrew from Primer shares this tip: “You can use a watch to determine general direction by pointing the hour hand at the sun. The midway point between the 12 o’clock position and the hour hand is south.”

Check out the full graphic at Primer. There are even tips for a digital watch wearers, i.e. you, Mr. I-don’t-need-a-watch-anymore-cause-I-carry-my-phone-everywhere. 

Perfect for serious wayfinding? Perhaps not. But to make sure you’re not walking the wrong way as you exit that subway station in this new neighborhood you’ve never been in before? Pretty handy. 

Spy School: How to Use an Analog Watch as a Compass to Find Direction