Thanks Nancy!

Today started out pretty rough. We did a diagnostic APFT. We are about 5500 feet higher here than we are back home and I really felt it this morning. I will have to do extra PT on the side to get my endurance built up or I will really suck wind in country.

After we ate breakfast and cleaned up we conducted training on our personally owned GPS devices. After lunch in the afternoon we conducted training on how to call in a Medevac and pistol familiarization (take downs, clearing, maintenance).

I want to talk about GPS devices. We have been told that these, coupled with a traditional lensatic compass and a map could save our lives. For example, we can use the GPS device to fix where we are, then use the compass to figure out where the enemy is, estimate distance to the enemy, then call it in for a fire mission (artillery or mortars) or CAS (close air support). Many soldiers we have talked to that served in Afghanistan will tell you that their GPS device literally saved their ass.

I have been using mine on the family ranch so I was already pretty familiar with it. I have a Garmin E-trex Venture. Many of my fellow soldiers just recently bought theirs and did not know how to set a waypoints, create routes, or set their devices up for easy navigation. I kinda became the ad hoc Garmin instructor because the instructor for the class owned a Magellan.

Needless to say, everyone in our outfit is much more comfortable with their GPS devices. The next level of training is we will give them the grid coordinates. They will ID them on a map and plug them into their GPS devices. They will then create a route and then walk the route.

Nancy, my mother in law, gave me an REI (Recreational Equipment Incorporated) gift card for Christmas one year and I used it to buy a water filter and my Garmin E-Trex Venture.



Blogger Will M said...

Great work
Keep it up
I will watching your blog from the SOS office

PS you should send Pam B the link

16 September, 2005 19:55  

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