HOW TO TEST YOUR MAGNET’S POLARITY
Practice, skillsets and ruggedness are all important to becoming a seasoned camper. But no matter what, every camper of every experience level needs the same supplies. There’s also something to be said for having multiples of many things: knives, lighters, can openers and, of course, compasses.
This is especially true considering that compasses are one of the few things that can break while in the wilderness. They can fall into the water or be crushed. And while having multiples will likely save you in a situation like that, always carry a magnet and needle for a backup compass. These two things are virtually indestructible. If you’re bringing a magnet along for utility, why not always have the Magnetic North and South Poles marked? Here’s how to do it.
• A compass • Magnet of choice • Tape of any kind
(it cannot be black in color) • A pen
Open your compass and lay your magnet next to it. Keeping the magnet on the same side of the compass at all times, rotate the magnet until either the south or north side of the compass is pointing toward the side of the magnet. You have found one side of the magnet. In figure 2 above, you can see that the south end of the needle is pointing directly toward the magnet. Mark that area “south.”
Repeat this process to find the opposite side of your magnet. Once you have both sides marked, always keep this magnet and a needle in your camping gear.