The staff was one of the most important weapons in the ninja's arsenal. It was generally around 6 feet in length, made of hard wood or bamboo and was hollow. The reason for the hollow part was another trick of the ninja trade. By flicking the bow with great speed, the ninja could launch a poison tipped dart or small knife out of the open end of the staff, often catching the opponent off guard.
Another trick they had for the bo was to conceal a chain inside it. Then, when engaged in battle, it could quickly be released and used as a weapon. This was called a shinobi zue, and was easily disguised as a walking stick or staff.
The Ninja, like sailors, used the stars to navigate at night but they also discovered 2 other ways of determining direction.
One is through the use of a tree stump. If the Ninja came across the stump of a tree, he simply looked at the growth rings to tell which direction was North. The rings become narrower and closer together as they approach North and wider and further apart as they approach South.