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Navigation for runners

"I feel like I learned a lot without it ever feeling laborious or unachievable.  I definitely feel a lot more confident about being able to navigate"



Navigation is an essential skill for anyone heading away from the security of roads and parks. It is the fundamental skill needed to break the barrier that limits us to familiar trails and opens up a world of exploring new possibilities.

As a runner we want to navigate differently to hill-walkers. We can show you simple techniques that keep your navigation fast and fluid, keeping you on track without having to stop as well as knowing what to do when we get lost!

We will start with fundamental good habits of map setting and direction finding and use these to help us to navigate around a variety of trails. As we go we will add to this with recognising different features on the ground and map along with ways to measure distance as we go.

Compass skills start simple, to check the direction of our trails and help us to find where we are. This builds to using a compass to go cross-country, away from the trail.

We will look at route planning skills and resources, so we set off running knowing how far it is, how much climbing is involved and how long it will take us.

In both Aviemore and the Pentland hills we have a huge variety of trails and locations that we can use for our training. This course includes one full day of instruction and does not include accommodation or meals, allowing you the flexibility to choose your own.


2022 Dates  

Date Venue Price Spaces Booking
9 April 2022 Pentland hills £80 Places available Book now
18 June 2022 Aviemore £80 Places available Book now
5 November 2022 Pentland hills £80 Places available Book now

Information on our Covid-19 mitigation procedures can be found here


If these dates don't work for you please get in touch to arrange a bespoke course.


Experience and fitness

The day will be a mix of a number of short runs, active workshops and some indoor sessions, so a basic level of running fitness is all you need to make the most of the weekend. If you can run 5k without stopping you should be fine.

No previous navigation experience is necessary.

Kit you will need

The workshops will be a mix of indoor and outdoor sessions.


Warmer jacket

Trail running shoes - Get in touch if you want more advice before the course.

Clean trainers for indoors



Small rucksack - We will never be too far from the base, so you will not need to carry much kit, just a warm jacket and water.

Headtorch - September to April

Compass if you have one

Maps will be provided

Getting here & accommodation

Aviemore courses

We will be based at Badaguish Outdoor Centre in Glenmore. From the roundabout at the south end of Aviemore, take the road towards Glenmore & Cairngorm. After 4.2 miles the turning to Badaguish is on the left


Wigwam accommodation is availbale onsite at Badaguish at a discount of 15%. Just make a booking through their website and use the code TRS21


Alternatively Aviemore has a wide variety of accommodation options

We also recommend Hostelling Scotland hostels in Aviemore or Glenmore where you can get a 10% discount by using the code TRAILRUN


Pentland hills courses

We are based at the Bonaly Outdoor Centre just off the Edinburgh bypass

Directions are here

Previous courses

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