Prepper Book Festival: Prepper’s Survival Navigation Book Giveaway

Don’t get lost. That’s one of the first principles of survival, particularly in the remote areas where many of us might find ourselves.

In a SHTF scenario, it’s easy to imagine pushing into the wilderness (or what’s left of it) and away from densely populated areas. Even your prized ultimate bug-out location might (and possibly “should”) be off the beaten path.

Survival navigation is one of those foundation skills that everyone would be well-advised to learn. It’s not a surprise that land navigation is one of the first core skills all Soldiers are taught in training. Regardless of background, learning to read a map and navigate terrain is essential to both short and long term survival.

Change is the constant. Expecting all your plans to go… well… according to plan, isn’t a recipe for success. When even the best laid survival plans go up in smoke, having a core skill set with land navigation is going to be a serious advantage.

That’s why I’m so thrilled to have Glen Martin here today in this BDS exclusive giveaway for his book, Prepper’s Survival Navigation.


Editor’s Note: What I loved about Glen’s book is that it teaches such a core expertise in an easy to follow manner. Moreover, it’s not “just a technical manual”. It puts the fundamental skill of land navigating within a larger context of survival skills. Really, it’s about many different survival skills, with navigation being the common thread linking them together.

Without further delay, here is the BDS exclusive with Glen!

An Interview with Glen Martin, Author of Prepper’s Survival Navigation

Tell me about your book.  What is it about?

Wilderness navigation foremost, but a whole lot more. When I was first approached by the publisher about writing a book on land navigation I was apprehensive at first. There’s much more to land navigation than just knowing how to read a map and compass, that’s the easy part. The awareness and understanding of your surroundings, your physical abilities, where you are, whether it’s winter or spring, day or night, how you walk, or hike, your pace count, and speed all go hand and hand with your map and compass while navigating.

We all know the best planning in the world cannot account for the unexpected. In wanting to cover those unfortunate mishaps that could occur on any outing or family vacation I pitched my plan to the publisher who was immediately on board with the idea. So the book contains several other chapters including how to build different types of emergency shelters, cold weather or winter survival skills, signaling for help, fire craft, survival medicine, even what to do and what not to do when you know you are lost.

What type of research did you have to do while writing your book?

Excellent question and you may be surprised. At first I thought this book will be a breeze but I was mistaken. I did learn how to read and understand a compass when I was very young. I use to draw in great detail my own maps of the Strawberry Mountain wilderness area that surrounded our home. I’ve also spent countless hours exploring different wildness areas. Some of my favorite adventures included areas in Alaska, Oregon, California, Nevada, Texas, and of course northern Idaho where I now live. What I’ve never done was try to teach others what I thought I knew. What I’m trying to say is; no matter how well you may think you know something, when you are putting yourself on the line in front of so many people you better have it right.

My research was more of a confirmation of what I knew, a little bit of what I thought I knew, and a whole lot of what I knew very little about, the medical aspects in particular. I spent many, many hours poring over military manuals in particular. These manuals I used to confirm what I knew was correct with the added benefit of finding new or improved aspects of navigating along with tips I had never thought of. It was like cramming for a college exam.

Other chapters in the book that I lacked in expertise I searched out through multiple sources in other books, well known or government websites, or direct contact with professionals. These resources are also listed in the book. For example and thanks to Dr. Joe Alton and nurse Amy of Doom and Bloom dot net.. They were a tremendous help in the survival medicine chapter.

How long did it take to write?

I was given a time frame of I believe 6 months to write the book. Here again I thought this will be a snap but as I explained in the research question it became a bit more daunting to make the deadline. The time it took to confirm and practice old techniques, learn and research other aspects of the book not directly related to land navigation but important to any outdoor adventure gave me worry but we made the deadline with extra time to polish up the finished manuscript.

Every book, fiction and non-fiction, includes a message.  What message do you hope my readers will take with them after reading your book?

It’s not about the end of the world and survival. It’s a book of skills, most of which are very easy to learn that are no longer taught. Like some subjects you may remember from school that you thought you would never use once learned you will find yourself using navigation and other skills presented  without ever knowing it. You may find yourself taking those wilderness vacations or visiting that remote lake with confidence you would not have visited before. You will look at the mountains, rivers, and even the stars differently. You may very well save a life if not your own. I would like people to enjoy the book but I would like to see them practice what they read and if you want to make some really big points, practice with your kids, they will love it.

Can you tell us a little bit more about yourself?

I was born in California but our family wanting to get back to a more self-sustaining lifestyle away from the city moved when I was around ten years old to the base of the Strawberry Mountains and later near the Cascade Mountain rage of Oregon. I spent my youth on a dude ranch giving guided horseback rides and packing hunters into the mountains on horseback for Elk, Deer, Bear and other critters.  Knowing well how to live off the land it was not uncommon to find me in the mountains often alone on a hunting or fishing trip with little more than my rifle or fishing pole.

After college where I earned my degrees in architecture and mechanical drafting I spent the next 30 years in several western states and Alaska as a design consultant. Now living in the mountains of Northern Idaho with my fiancé I settled into an off-grid lifestyle where I own and operate a 24/7 internet radio station broadcasting over 50 “How To” shows devoted to self-reliance and independence. When not at my desk you may or may not find me exploring somewhere in the mountains of Northern Idaho.

As an author in the survival, self-sufficiency and self-reliance space, what are you personally preparing for?

Several years ago this question would have been much harder to answer. Because I’m back in the north west, living in the mountains, and with solar power no less, I am pretty much prepared. Water is not a concern and there is plenty of both wild vegetation and game. My only concern would be the possibility of an influx of people that dared to come this high and that I think would take a major event.

As far as disasters both manmade and natural that I believe most people should be aware of and preparing for, our economy is near the top on my list along with societal collapse. Be prepared for those around you. Whatever the catastrophe know you are prepared with shelter, water, and food or the retreat where it’s available. And remember bad times no matter the catalyst will bring bad people.

What would be your first prep-step if you were just getting started?

For so many this would depend on their current situation and where they live but in a nut shell… Location if possible would be my first priority. I would be as rural or off grid as I currently am, then again I prefer the seclusion. Setting location aside or while waiting to make that change if wanted I would work on the 3. Food, water, and shelter. With the most limited in funds there is always something you can do. Even if it’s a three-day plan you have to start somewhere. That’s the first hurtle, getting started but once you have it’s just a building process and so what if it seems to take a lot of time. Keep at it and you will always be ahead of many as well as where you were.

Do you have plans for another book?

I am working on another book and this one will be fiction. It will follow the exploits of two people with nothing in common who have overcome a catastrophic event. They continue on a journey of survival working together continuously facing adversities trying to find a place to start over.

Is there anything else you would like to share with BDS readers?

An old friend of mine closed each and every show with four words “Keep Prepping My Friends”.

No matter where you are or what you have, anything you do will keep you in front of those that do little or nothing at all. Use your wits, learn, and practice what you learn. All skills sooner or later come in handy and may even save a life.

The Giveaway

Glen has generously agreed to give away 3 copies in this latest Prepper Book Festival.

A special word about the giveaway question/comment:  Please read the question and respond accordingly, even it the answer is “I don’t know”.  This week’s question is:

“How important is land navigation to your survival plans given your location?”

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The deadline is 6:00 PM MST Friday with the winners notified by email and announced on the Rafflecopter in the article.  Please note that the winners must claim their book within 48 hours or an alternate will be selected.Note:  Due to customs requirements, this giveaway is only open to individuals with a mailing address in the United States.

The Final Word

For more information about the books in this latest book festival, visit Prepper Book Festival 14: Books to Learn, Prepare, and Be Ready for Anything.


If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of our e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.   Also check the Facebook page regularly for links to free or almost free eBooks that we personally review just for you.

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!



Spotlight: Prepper’s Survival Navigation

The book covers a wide range of navigation topics, but specifically covers:

1. Orienting yourself via topographical map
2. Finding “North” using a compass and stars
3. Basics of pace count
4. Calculating distance using landmarks
5. Dead reckoning and unfamiliar terrain navigation
6. Low visibility travel in small teams
7. Terrain association to pinpoint current location
8 . Additional instructions on fire craft, water procurement, and basic shelter

If you are looking to increase your land navigation proficiency, this is a MUST HAVE for the survival library.


If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of the e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.   Also check out our Facebook page regularly for links to free or almost free eBooks that I personally reviewed just for you.

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!




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47 Responses to “Prepper Book Festival: Prepper’s Survival Navigation Book Giveaway”

  1. Navigation is very important in any survival situation. It doesn’t matter how great your destination is if you can’t get there.

    • I don’t know.

  2. I have always wanted to learn navigation by the stars

  3. I have a bug-in plan that is my first preference, but if the situation is dire, I have rural bug-out location that will require traveling a significant distance so land navigation will be crucial.

  4. Even here, in the Ozarks, one can get turned around. Very important to learn to read maps, compass, and stars just give you a peace of mind.

  5. don’t believe that navigation will be important to me but it might be to someone I’m trying to tell how to get to me. So I may need it , to inform someone how to find me easily.

  6. Finding a way to catch water and a way to irrigate garden

  7. There are two skills as a novice homesteader I’d focus on mastering. The 1st is large scale gardening and the 2nd is animal husbandry.

  8. Correct navigation is super important to me because I have more than one location as a possible run-to spot if it becomes necessary…and who knows where I may be when and if that time comes?

  9. I don’t know much about navigation, but I do know that in and emergency, you need to know how to navigate the land.

  10. I’m looking forward to reading this book! One never knows when they may be in an emergency situation — during travels or whenever — and may need to know these skills that SHOULD be part of every school’s curriculum!

  11. I’ve been wanting to learn about navigation and this book will help with that.

  12. I know how to read a compass to determine north, south, etc but have no idea how to navigate using one or how to read the stars at night. Very important knowledge to have, especially living in Arizona surrounded by desert.

  13. I have a compass in my BOB but other than finding north, have no idea how to use it. This book should help me learn how to navigate. Thanks.

  14. We live on the tip top of a mountain. Many a time I’d wished I’d had navigation skills. My hubby calls me “directionally challenged”!!

  15. Gardening and raising chickens are the first homestead skills I would try to master.

  16. I know nothing about navigation. I never really thought I needed it, because I live in the suburbs (there’s not a lot of wilderness around here), but knowing there’s always a change you’ll need to bug out, I realize it would be a good skill to have.

  17. I hope to be able to stay in my home, but, I want to be prepared for anything.

  18. I don’t really know anything about land navigation. But it’s something I should lesrn!

  19. I’m really looking forward to learning about this! I attend a group that meets weekly at a local prepper store and I’m going to suggest we have a class on this so we can practice. For those in the Mesa AZ area… it’s Tues nights at Preparing Wisely

  20. Having been a hunter and wilderness backpacker all my life has stressed the importance of land navigation skills. GPS may not work, your compass may be broken or lost, visibility may be limited by weather, smoke or darkness. You need alternate methods of finding your way.

    I’d very much enjoy reading this book.

    Thanks so much to both of you.

  21. I would heartily read this book: if it was relied only once when you felt lost, it would be an incalculable blessing to have learned from the lessons it outlines!

  22. Navigation isn’t really important for my survival plans. I understand it is a vital skill set. But when you don’t have anywhere to go it isn’t really utilized.

  23. I am a home in the woods and can navigate and use a compass and the sun to find my way. But it would be nice to get some other opinions on what to do from this book…

  24. In the Army I learned a little bit about map reading and how to use a compass but always seemed to get lost. So for me, land navigation is extremely important and a skill one must have to survive.

  25. Fire. We all need it so doing it well is a goal.

  26. As a homesteader I would need to master basics of food growing/gathering, heat, and water prep.

  27. Read and use a compass

  28. It would be if we would have to navigate out of the city (New York City) up or down state.

  29. U think knowing how to find your way is important no matter where you are.

  30. Hi Gaye I learned how to use a compass while I was in the Army.I think I could use a refresher course after 64 years. Thanks for a really good Article.

  31. Land navigation is extremely important where I live. Large sections are completely devoid of water sources. Of course, that makes it less likely the bad guys will settle there, so living on the fringes has its advantages.

  32. While I certainly need to learn navigation (give me a landmark and I’m okay, but other than that…….), I think the first skills I would need to learn as a novice homesteader would be gardening, a way to find/keep water, and a means to find food (foraging, hunting, trapping).

  33. As a novice homesteader my priorities would be water, shelter, food, heat (cooking) then whatever I needed to survive. Eventually livestock and whatever I could grow for both myself and my animals.

  34. I live on the Front Range of Colo so the mountains are always “west”. However, at night or on cloudy foggy days, I’d need to use navigation aids.

  35. I am currently working on my gardening skills. I don’t know much about navigation besides reading road maps, so there ya go!

  36. I am currently reading the Natural Navigator by Tooley – anything that teaches me how not to get lost is valuable

  37. If I’m forced to bug out I’ll quickly end up in territory I don’t know and get lost in circles in no time! I need to learn how to navigate in order to stay alive.

  38. Gardening and securing water without electricity

  39. The first thing I would learn as a new homesteader is how to ensure I have clean water.

    Learning to navigate by compass is necessary. Having your area maps from the USGS printed on waterproof paper is a good prep. Take a compass class. Check with your local Boy Scout or ROTC Cadets to see if there is a class you can attend. Knowing your coordinates, the length of your stride, and how to read the compass is invaluable.

  40. Land navigation is very important to my survival plan. Even with advance plans, sometimes plans have to be changed.

    The first skills for a novice to master could include land navigation, how to purify water and to forage, and how to build a fire and a shelter.

  41. I don’t have enough knowledge in this area. You can always keep learning.

  42. EEEKKKKK…………. I am not prepared for this at all.

  43. Having maps and a compass would help if there is a grid down situation. If The Gps system is down it would be invaluable to have a compass and paper maps to move about. I live near Chicago and it would be best to have these skills if a bug out was inevitable.

  44. Gardening

  45. Gardening and raising animals

  46. Hmmm…..first skills. That would probably be gardening and raising chickens.


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