View Full Version : Night Walking

2004-09-08, 14:20
I remembered an interesting article I read in Backpacker Magazine. I found the article again at:


Looking At Night In A Whole New Light
By Annette McGivney, BACKPACKER Southwest Editor, April 1997

The people quoted in the article have a website here:


Hawking Training: Part 4, Night Walking

I had this training, in another context. My dad taught me how to see the shooting stars by not looking directly at them, in fact, by using peripheral vision "rods" and not fovial focus using only "cones". Dad also taught me to "see" wild game, this way. Dad liked photography: the purpose was for getting the photograph. Dad also taught me to walk at night, using no artificial light source. I am really, really good at this.

I don't take supplements of vit. A recommended by the Hawking Training article, but I do understand the perceptual shift described at their website, especially: water, fire, earth, and air. I know that is accurate.

I think they are missing the point, about "perceptual shift" being midway from the eyes, in the section POV point of view.

What they describe is a different practice altogether, simply an exercize for "noticing" the focal point of "attention", and then, go on to "put" your "attention" wherever you want, usually to help overcome a health problem or injury you have.

"Perceptual shift" is not from psychological "disassociation" which is harmful and dehumanizing.

"Perceptual shift" for POV point of view is viewing the world thru the "filter" of the different charkra lens on the different locations on the body. There really are people who see the world from the point of view somewhere around their, well, you get the idea.

An a--h--- for example is someone "missing the mark" because the root chakra for self protection is located at a point between the a--h--- and the other opening, well, "down there".

Anyway I say: don't be "put off" by all the "New Age" rhetoric. This stuff works. I especially recommend the pick a star approximately 20-30 degrees above the horizon method they describe.

I didn't learn that way. However, this is effective.

I know I saw a different, more direct, article elsewhere.

Maybe someone knows that article.

I would appreciate comments about Night Walking, traveling overland at night, and "seeing" well at night, using no artificial light source.

2004-09-09, 07:16
I used to go night hiking all the time in North Georgia, especially Blood Mountain. Haven't had the opportunity to do it here in Europe. Two buddies of mine and I would decide to jump up and go for a hike (often deciding this at 9 PM or so), drive the hour and change from Atlanta to Neels Gap, and hike up to the top of Blood. Moon or no, we never hiked with lights, and we always had a great time. I quickly learned to look around with off-center vision so I could actually see what was going on. We'd occasionally get a branch in the facte or trip over a small root, but no one ever got lost or hurt.

2004-09-11, 23:54
Back in the old days(I just lost the attention of everyone under 40) The Army used to teach how to walk at night as a part of basic training. The scanning procedure and patrolling at night was testable, so if you can find an old FM "common soldier skills" manual, it'll have the method.

SGT Rock
2004-09-12, 09:50
There used to be a task in the CTT manual called "Perform Surveillance at night without the aid of electronic equipment" basically the same thing about how to see at night. There is also some of this information in patrolling in I think FM 7-7. These days almost everyone is issued night vision in combat units that would be par toling. In the infantry units I have worked with everyone has a set of PVS-7B or a PVS-14 and in my unit we were able to get one for everyone except maybe a TOC soldier and a mechanic or two before we deployed. The skills of operating at night without these devices are becoming perishable skills. I see the same thing happening with compasses because of GPS equipment.