I am notorious for seeing something uber cool like a sweet mountain potentially full of amazing diamonds and gold. I will be drawn to it and chase after it. Once I find it I have a hard time getting back to where I have been....where I set up base and stored all my gear that I found. Or I am in a cave and I get lost in the majestic nature of the cave and the intricate halls and nooks and crannies. I start going places never been and end up lost.
I preface my question with this because I am looking for a great way to track where I have been or track how to get home. Don't say use the compass because the first thing I did when I got to the map was get lost and set up base. Compass also doesn't work in caves (aka, pointing towards your spawn does no good in a cave...and maybe just get you more lost).
What tips do you guys/girls have for tracking these things?
Since cobblestone is rarely seen outside of dungeons and lava/water intersections, I make cobblestone pillars with torches on top. Usually on hills so they are visible from a distance.
Indoors, I leave breadcrumb trails of redstone torches.
On the open sea, I carry stacks of sand or gravel (yay gravity) and if I am about to lose sight of my previous waypoint, I drop a pillar of sand/gravel until it is at the surface, then make a cobblestone pillar/torches.
I normally use torches to track where I have been. Just recently I have started using signposts.
i thought about the signposts...only problem is they don't stack.
I use torches as well, but in caves I end up putting torches everywhere and then I just get led in circles. I have recently started to use 2 torches together to signify the path to the exit since many mines have multiple offshoots everywhere.
I like the cobblestone idea. And the cobble stone with moss. That is a good idea. I have also tried going to the very top of each mountain area I have been and building a very tall one block thick tower with torches to signify where I have been. That should be viewable from all over.
Redstone is by far the best to use, quick, easy to mark direction of travel, and if you're not using it for anything else, you should have tons of it. You can pretty much leave non-stop trails for most caves - and pick it up on your way out.
Edit: Best for underground that is; above I like a 4 cobble pillar with a torch on the face in the direction of travel, spam them every 100 or so blocks. One of the most important things to remember is treating each expedition as a single event, and when your done, its important to backtrack and remove the torches - or sooner rather than later you'll pass pillars from previous expeditions and be lost again.
I usually set torches and pillars of cobblestone. When I have a huge amount of dirt, I leave a trail of dirt blocks 5 squares of distance. That way, I can easily know where I found the diamond, gold, etc.
Or you can build a huge bridge beginning from your base to the never ending minecraft world :ohmy.gif:
I use a combination of paths dug into the sand/grass as I travel along. Some times I will build a tunnel to travel in so it keeps me safer at night from mobs. I also use a piller of stones with a torch on top and a sign on it with a note to myself as to what lies ahead like a street sign.
If your in a grassy area you can right click on the grass to shave it and it will leave a dirt path for you to follow.
Using F3 key to find the coordinates to Any points I want to remember I jot down on sticky notes and log them in my spread sheet for a history of buildings and towns and cool points I want to remember to come back and visit.
Well with caves, mines or and underground adventuring I always place torches on the right wall as I explore. If additional torches are needed to light up a large cavern they are placed on the floor only. When I need to get out I turn so the wall torches are on my left. Then follow them out. You may need an additional designation if you have looping and intersecting pathways but it usually works fine for me.
For above ground I use a variety of methods - cobblestone or dirt pillars are good - making sure to place torches on them so you can tell the way home in case you get turned around. Be consistent.
For ease of play and to make our own mines easier to get out of all players on our server use the top method when underground. That we all know how to go deeper to mine and how to get back out no matter who started the tunnels.
I was taught many years ago by an experienced player to get a pumpkin farm started and then always carry a stack of 64 jackolanterns with me.
1. They provide as much light as a torch.
2. They have a face that can point the way out or back to base.
I use them along with torches on the right side cave wall to prevent getting lost underground.
Rollback Post to RevisionRollBack
There are no dangerous weapons. There are only dangerous people. R.A. Heinlein
If you aren't part of the solution, then you obviously weren't properly dissolved.
I always carry a map around (note that maps didn't exist when this thread was made), which may not seem that useful while caving but it lets me see where I've been in general, where I constantly expand outwards into unmapped areas, so anything in the middle of a mapped area has likely been explored out. I also build 20 block tall cobblestone pillars to mark "return points", where I either left off to return to my base due to lack of inventory space or found a new area I plan to explore later, with a staircase down to the exact point I left off. I also record the coordinates, which usually aren't needed, just the map, unless I don't return for a long time (years in the case of my first world, where a single a level 4 map takes 5-6 months of intensive daily playing to fill in; here is an example of my "map wall" in another world, with level 3 maps; the entire mapped area has been explored out underground, with new exploration along the edges, a couple maps have straight edges since I didn't make the maps next to them until later, exploring no further off a map than the size of the current cave system/mineshaft/ravine until then).
Otherwise, I mainly rely on memory and lit-up/mined-out areas in the caves themselves; the sheer rate at which I explore them and their complexity (vanilla/modded 1.6.4, with a much more extensive underground than modern versions, especially in the latter case) makes it hard to justify using any sort of markers (in caves themselves, not the aforementioned "return points"); as it is I rarely miss much, as seen by using MCEdit to look around after I've explored an area, and as mentioned before I make return points when I've found a distinctly new area so I can explore it later (often there is only a single cave linking two major cave systems/mineshafts/etc so it could be hard to find again without some marker).
I do use cobblestone to block off intersections in mineshafts (both to the sides and above, with the second floor explored before the rest of the intersection below), more for blocking them off against mobs than for navigation though; my method of exploration is to keep going down tunnels/corridors until I reach a dead end or new area (setting a marker there), then I backtrack, going down branches I passed along the way (for a complex multi-way intersection I'll place a block at the entrance of the tunnel I came in from, the main case where I do use markers).