Celestial Navigation: From Noon Sight To Dancing with the Stars
Celestial navigation is one of the oldest forms of navigation. For thousands of years, an understanding of the sky has guided mariners safely across the trackless oceans of the world. It is a traditional craft that is rich in both history and romance. With the advent of modern electronics, one can now cross oceans with little more than a smartphone to find the way—making celestial navigation as well as other traditional forms of navigation all but a lost art. We would argue that as a mariner, there are few things more satisfying than finding your way across the waters using a few basic tools, a sharp pencil, and a little bit of luck–none of which requires electricity. This course will introduce the art of celestial navigation. We will cover the basic theory and concepts of navigating by celestial bodies, the care and use of the sextant, the use of the Nautical Almanac and Sight Reduction Tables, and easy-to-follow steps on how to take and work out sun and star sites. No prior experience is necessary.