How can you find a location when flying a lander in KSP? I have a contract to collect soil samples from specific zones on Minmus. The locations are shown with pink sample bags in the orbit map, but aren't marked in staging view.

I can activate navigation to the location. This adds the pink sample bag symbol to the navball on the direction to the location. When flying over a location I'm looking down on the top half of the navball, but the mark for the location is conveniently located on the bottom half.

Landing somewhere near the locations doesn't work because they aren't visible to the Kerbal on an EVA (and the Kerbal doesn't have a navball).

How can I find these locations while flying my lander?


These locations are not ordinary objects. You can't set them as a target, only "activate navigation".

activate navigation

Only descending into a crater so that a location was above me could I get a good enough idea of which direction it was.

in crater

This is the view of the navball from almost directly above the location. Notice there isn't an anti-location marker.

blank navball above location

If I roll the craft over the location marker is visible on the underside of the navball.

location marked under navball

The above series of actions isn't a solution. It's an aggressive 500 m/s Δv maneuver to demonstrate the conundrum.

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    The next lander I'm building is going to have an extra probe core put on upside down so I can switch modes and fly it looking at the bottom of the navball. – Cirdec Dec 19 '14 at 22:41
  • Probe core is perfectly fine, docking ports are also quite common for that task. Auto-translation would be fine, I'd even postulate at least mod already fixes that. As your comment is a perfectly valid answer (apart from switching to map all the time) you should answer your own question and mark it as accepted answer. – mbx Dec 20 '14 at 1:34
  • You should be able to see the anti-target marker. If you aren't, then that probably means that you need to upgrade something at KSC. Given how much is now tied to KSC upgrades, crew skills, and probe capabilities, I think your problem is just that you haven't unlocked something. – MBraedley Dec 20 '14 at 2:37
  • @mbx Launch a new mission isn't really an acceptable solution. – Cirdec Dec 20 '14 at 5:52
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    @MBraedley It's not a target; it's a special location navigation marker. – Cirdec Dec 20 '14 at 6:20

What you want is the In-Flight Waypoints plugin:

A rover full of kerbals on the surface of Kerbin. A waypoint icon is displayed on the ground nearby.
Click to view full size.

The KSP developers have even highlighted it on their dev blog. Hopefully this becomes stock soon.


I second the recommendation to get the In-Flight Waypoints plugin (should be stock).

Other things to try:

  1. Add a probe core or docking port upside-down so you can click "Control From Here". I forget if you can assign that to an action group, which would make it easier.
  2. Try the Trajectories mod to make it easier to plan your flight path. You can put it in "body-fixed mode" to show your path and impact point relative to the ground rather than relative to your orbit. It should make it easier to get your impact (landing) point as close as possible to the navigation marker.

Try switching to surface mode on the nav ball.


Do not EVA until you get the message "Entering areaname". You will need to bunny hop towards the marker a couple of times.

Long version: set a course over the marker and a de-orbit maneuver that puts you down nearby. During your landing final approach, the marker will move from bottom of the nav ball to nearly horizontal. You should be able to hover and point (part of) your lander at the marker before touch down. That tells you which way to hop.

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