What to Bring

Navigation Weekend


by Ashley Burke

This equipment list is suitable for the navigation weekend that is normally run in the months of March-October.This list is specific for this particular weekend. For a more general list intended for most other bushwalking trips that I lead in the Blue Mountains, please see the Bushwalking Gear List.

Equipment List - Navigation Weekend


Item Comments Availability
Sleeping bag The sleeping bag should be 3-4 season rated, or temperature rated to zero degrees celsius.  
Pack/Rucksack Minimum volume 60L, or 55L at a pinch. Try to pack everything inside. Avoid loose items strapped to outside of pack. Foam mats can get scratched or torn if strapped on outside of pack. I have a spare which you can borrow.
Lightweight tent or tent fly with ground sheet.

The campsite is in a very sheltered location under a huge sandstone overhang protected from the elements. A tent is therefore not essential if you are willing to sleep under the overhang, but if you do not bring a tent you will need a ground sheet or tarp, plus a space blanket or similar.

It may be possible to share tents. I can help organise tent accommodation. Contact me about borrowing or sharing a tent if you do not have one. If you do have a tent or fly with spare space, please let me know.

I have 1 place in my 2-person tent plus a separate 1-person tent that may be borrowed.
Foam mat or thermarest A foam mat can be purchased inexpensively from camping stores. Can be borrowed.
Waterproof rain coat Can be lightweight.  
Water bottle(s) Enough to hold 3-4 litres is required. Take old soft drink bottles or used wine cask bladders.  
Torch A small head torch is ideal  
Fleece or warm jumper    
Thermal underwear Top and bottom  
Walking shoes For further advice on walking shoes, contact me directly  

Cooking and eating utensils:

  • Billy
  • Plastic cup
  • Spoon
  • Pocket knife
  • Fork (optional)

Camping stoves are optional. On most trips we will have a campfire which you are welcome to use for cooking on. Camping stoves can be shared, and I can provide you with boiling water for your cooking needs.

A "billy" is a small aluminium pot which is used to cook over the fire.



Bring enough food for yourself for the duration of the trip. Normally everyone brings their own food unless specific arrangements to share food are made.

See food suggestions below for help on what sort of food to bring.


Shirt and shorts or long pants for walking in during the day

Shorts or long pants? This depends on personal preference, and time of year or expected temperatures. Bear in mind that you will be walking through scrub which may be dense in places and therefore long pants are recommended. In the summer months or in hot weather, shorts are ok, though gaiters are highly recommended if hiking in shorts.  
Gaiters (optional) Gaiters for the lower legs provide protection against the low scrub and also from snakebite. Optional.  

Additional warm clothes (depending on time of year):

  • Beanie
  • Gloves

Check the weather forecast prior to the trip. The weather in May-September can be variable and cold weather is likely, especially at night. Ensure you have sufficient warm clothes for chilly evenings and mornings. Most likely not needed on trips in March, April and October.


Personal items:

  • Toilet paper
  • First aid

Keep to minimum. Do not use soap or anything that will pollute waterways. Hand sanitizer gel (that doesn't require water) is a good alternative to soap.

First aid kit must include as a minimum:

  • 1 x compression bandage (minimum dimensions 7.5cm wide x 2.3m long unstretched)
  • band aids
  • Antiseptic cream or betadine

Also recommended:

  • Cotton wool balls
  • safety pins

Each person should bring a compass for this weekend in order to gain the most benefit from what we will be learning. I can supply you with a compass at the same price that it costs me, or you may rent one for the weekend for $15. Compasses can also be purchased from camping and outdoor stores or online.

For information on what is the best compass to buy, see Section 7.2 of my navigation tutorial.

Here is a price list for different models of compasses that I can supply for you:

Rent a Silva Ranger for the weekend - $15

Buy a Suunto A-30: $50

Buy a Silva Ranger: $55

Buy a Suunto M-3 Global: $96.50

Buy a Suunto MC-2 Global with mirror: $115

Topographic Map of the area we will be walking in. You will need a topographic map of the area that we will be walking in. Details of which map you need will be sent to you once I receive your application. You can either bring your own copy of this map, or purchase one from a supply I will bring with me at a cost of around $20.  
Pencil Useful for drawing bearings and marking the route on your map.  
Money Details of cost will be sent to you by email.  
Course Notes (Optional)

I have written an online navigation course (HTML version) and on the weekend you will be putting these course notes into practise. You might want to print out the online course and bring these notes with you. This is optional. There is also a PDF version which is more print friendly however this is an older version of the online course without as much detail.

Go to HTML version


Download PDF(older) version

Keen to join a navigation weekend? Click below:

Food Suggestions

It is normal practise for everyone to bring their own food for the trip. That way, each person can eat according to their own preferences and diet, and less time is spent organising communal food.

Below are some suggestions on the sorts of food that are suitable to bring on the 2 day navigation weekend. These are suggestions only, based on what I normally take on a weekend walk. Everyone's tastes and diet are different, so feel free to make any changes to the list below based on your preferences. Also feel free to contact me if you have any other questions about what sorts of food to bring.

General Comments

Things to avoid:

On the other hand, food can be fun and easy to cook when camping, and it is possible to have good variety, including fresh foods, especially on shorter trips.










If you like to snack between meals then you can bring anything such as chocolate, nuts, biscuits, snack bars or other snack food.



All content on this web page is Copyright © Ashley Burke. No duplication of any text or image without permission.

This page created 17 Apr 2008, last updated 22 Jun 2019.