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Secrets of the Viking Navigators

By Leif K Karlsen

Most navigators have heard of Viking sunstones, but few realize they are more than legend. Leif Karlsen has brought them to life. He shows us how they work—now, and a thousand years ago—and what it was that led the Viking navigators to develop this unique tool for finding the direction to the sun, even when the sun is obscured by clouds or fog.

Leif K. Karlsen has 45 years of experience at sea, including many years in the North Atlantic where he served as a professional navigator and radio electronics officer with the US Merchant Marines.

"Using clues he gained from the Icelandic Sagas, his experiences as a professional navigator, and from his voyages on 'Borgunknarren' — a 60' Viking ship replica — Leif K. Karlsen reveals the secrets of Viking navigation. Karlsen has done extensive researching on the Viking 'sunstone' and 'horizon board' and explains how they work. This is an interesting, valuable, and educational contribution to the understanding of the Vikings' success as navigators and seamen." – Dr. Alf Lunder Knudsen, Editor Emeritus Western Viking

"If 'cutting edge' can be used in relation to Viking navigation, this information is definitely it. Leif Karlsen is the world's foremost scholar on the Viking sunstone. His well-researched and intelligent work on Viking navigation examines the sagas and combines that information with the experiential and practical research of just trying it out. It's a comprehensive and accessible study that's also a compelling analysis of the secrets of Viking navigators, and their unparalleled success as sea-born explorers." – Kristine Leander, PhD, Director, Leif Erikson International Foundation

"Most navigators have heard of Viking sunstones, but few realize they are more than legend. Leif Karlsen has brought them to life. He shows us how they work — now, and a thousand years ago — and what it was was led the Viking navigators to develop this unique tool for finding the direction to the sun, even when the sun is obscured by clouds or fog." – David Burch, PhD, Director, Starpath School of Navigation



Title: Secrets of the Viking Navigators
Author: Leif K Karlsen
Publisher: Starpath Publications
Published: 2018
Pages: 208
ISBN: 9780914025610
Binding: Paperback