Land Nav Thoughts

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Full Metal Bulldog, Sep 23, 2013.

  1. Full Metal Bulldog

    Full Metal Bulldog Citadel Class of 2016

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2012
    Messages:
    428
    Likes Received:
    22
    I recently completed my first land nav FTX last weekend. Never before had I ever done anything besides plot points and the other basics in a classroom setting. Found 7/8 day and 4/5 night. However, I made a conclusion and I would like to start a discussion here about it. Many say that with LDAC's new "secondary point" system, it is a lot easier, or at least easier to pass, harder to excel at. I thought the same thing until I actually did real land nav'ing on an actual Army land nav range. It actually seems much, much more difficult. In my very limited experience, as long as you accurately plot your points, before you head out, you'll eventually find your point somewhere around where you expect it to be. 15 minutes at most of dead reckoning through some bush off the trail or firebreak and you're bound to find your target. With the new system, the secondary points are going to be a real pain: your azimuth following, terrain association, and dead reckoning skills have to be perfect to find the actual point. Any supplementary comments?

    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Sir Ernest Benn
     
  2. khergan

    khergan Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2012
    Messages:
    104
    Likes Received:
    0
    I went to LDAC in 12 when the new system had not been implemented. I've also spoken to a lot of our cadets that went to the new system. The overwhelming consensus among the cadets that went in 13 was that the system was significantly easier. We had 0% failure rate as opposed to about 40% failure rate in 12. Yes, I suppose it is somewhat harder to max, but when we were looking at CCIMS for our 13 cadets, they all did pretty damn well considering.

    Land nav is what it is - just be solid on the fundamentals of plotting and route planning. Remember too that Land Nav is highly situational based on where the course is. At Fort Lewis, it's impossible to dead reckon due to the terrain - it's like a dense jungle. They tell you to use the roads for a reason; it's the only to terrain associate and find your points. However, at other courses, it will depend again on the terrain. Many Land Nav courses don't have mapped roads like LDAC and will encourage use of dead reckoning and terrain association other than roads.

    That being said, if they keep the multiple point system in place, I wouldn't worry too much about it. Take your training seriously, but don't lose any sleep over it.
     
  3. JMS

    JMS Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    Messages:
    448
    Likes Received:
    11
    Interesting observations. It sounds a bit like boccie ball... lots of things to hit, but only the one counts. How does one know if they found a correct point while in the field (or maybe one does not know) and if not the correct point can one look further (or is it 'one and done.')?
    sorry for all the questions, just trying to understand how it works.
     
  4. -Bull-

    -Bull- Member

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,378
    Likes Received:
    334
    With the clusters, it's easier to pass, harder to get Recondo.

    @JMS, you don't know in the field if your point is a primary or secondary.
     
  5. sancontoa

    sancontoa Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2013
    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    1
    I went to LDAC this summer and I had the problem JMS pointed out. Its impossible to tell which are the points in your cluster and which are from nearby cluster. The course was set up so that there seemed to be a points ever 50-100 meters. Most people who failed came back thinking they got all their points, only to find out that they the points were from a different cluster. The only solution is to make sure you know your pace count and use an attack point off the roads. If you have a correct pace count, then you will find your cluster no problem.
    Another thing to mention is that you will have a practice course at LDAC the day before you do the test so you can familiarize yourself with the terrain and the cluster system. My two cents after going through the "new LDAC" this summer is to keep in mind land nav is now a go/no go event and you will have two chances. As a MS1 cadet land nav isn't something you should be stressing about anymore.
     
  6. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,234
    Likes Received:
    5
    It's not even close to impossible, that's how LN should be. If they can not differentiate between 50-100 meters either their pace count, plotting, or compass skills are lacking. What happens in real life if you can not accurately differentiate 50-100 meters? Probably not good things. I know what you meant in your post but for lurkers the new course is set up for accuracy in stead of tracking long distances using dead reckoning.

    It's not that hard, if it seems to good to be true with a land nav point it probably is. If you find a point and your pace count says you still have 40ish meters to go trust your pace count and don't fall for the, "well this should be my point" trap.

    LN a few years ago was much harder.
     
  7. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2010
    Messages:
    4,274
    Likes Received:
    606
    LDAC has...
     
  8. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    1,234
    Likes Received:
    5
    Haha shhhhh
     
  9. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2010
    Messages:
    5,537
    Likes Received:
    837
    Now that's funny.
     
  10. sancontoa

    sancontoa Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2013
    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    1
    I was reply to the question of if there was a way to tell if you got the right point when you are out on the course. The answer to that question is no, in my experience this summer many cdts thought they had the right point only to find out they were in the wrong cluster because there were so many points on the course. In many other courses I've been on its easily to tell you are lost because there are no points for 100+ meters, however on the new ldac course there are a lot more points on the course because for everY actual point there are three or four in the cluster so its easer to get mistaken. Of course you are correct that if you are doing it correct you will have no problem but you will not know if you got your points correct till you check back in and they loom at your scoresheet.
     
  11. sancontoa

    sancontoa Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2013
    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    1
    To be clear though I agree that this years course seems to have been easier, we had a very low failure rate. The new format did trip up a lot of cdts, mainly because they got a point wrong or just one of the secondary points and tried to navigate to their second point from there instead of going back to the road and using an attack point. That's why I wanted to post about it being impossible to tell if your point is the right one (and not a secondary/different cluster), so cdts going next year will know to not try to navigate point to point.
     

Share This Page