FORT KNOX Ky.- In the depths of the woods, Cadets emerge victoriously! With minimal tools and resources, the 3rd Regiment, Basic Camp Cadets use their acquired skills of land navigation to find hidden plotted points.
Terrain Talk with Captain Peter Ahching
“I am an operations officer for the Cadets, so my job is to assess the quality of training that the Cadets receive from Cadre. I also assess the safety of the training, and finally monitor how well the Cadets utilize the training given to them.”
“Today we are doing land navigation with the Alpha Company, 3rd Regiment. Terrain Association is Cadets applying what they’ve learned from looking at their maps and understanding the differences between the terrain on the map and the terrain in real life,” Ahching continued.
“The most common challenge we run into with the Cadets is their lack of experience and knowledge that comes with Terrain Association. This includes how to read a map, how to use a compass and a protractor, etc. Luckily, we help them overcome this challenge along with many others.”
“The great thing about this training is that our regimental training officer’s, Lt. Col. Carlos Louche, standards are currently being met. As a result, we a looking at a successful rotation with these Basic Camp Cadets.”
Into the Woods with Cadet Ashley Allen from Rutgers University
“Terrain Association is basically the technique of plotting points on a map and finding those points using a compass, a pace count, a protractor, and our squad.”
“To plot our points, we use a map provided, we then use a protractor to measure out those points. When we are actually out in the field, we use a compass to get the proper degrees in order to walk the straight path that leads to our points.”
“A lot of the challenges that we face during this exercise is not being able to just walk straight to the point, especially when you are in the woods with many trees and obstacles that can deter you. That is an easy way to throw you off track or ruin your pace count.”
“Personally, I have never done land nav before so being able to use my compass and find my points was amazing. Especially, considering I have never used a compass to navigate before coming to basic camp. That was definitely a huge highlight for me.”
“As for a word of advice for future Cadets who will have to do Terrain Association; stay calm and trust your instincts because usually, you’re more correct than you think you are. Also, don’t get overwhelmed. They give you all the skills you’ll need to be successful so just take in the teachings and apply them to the best of your ability.”
There you have it, another skill acquired for the Cadets here at the 2018 Cadet Summer Training at Fort Knox!