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Desert Fox
02-06-2004, 18:01
Hi,
Is it possible to navigate accurately during a total darkness night?
With no GPS of course.

Thank you.

Team Sergeant
02-06-2004, 18:16
Welcome Desert Fox.

LOL, a fine question indeed.

The short answer is yes. We’ve been navigating quite well for a number of years devoid of the Global Positioning System. (Even during the hours of “total” darkness.)

The Team Sergeant

Roguish Lawyer
02-06-2004, 18:45
Originally posted by AProfSoldier
Welcome Desert Fox.

LOL, a fine question indeed.

The short answer is yes. We’ve been navigating quite well for a number of years devoid of the Global Positioning System. (Even during the hours of “total” darkness.)

The Team Sergeant

Inquiring minds want to know.

The Reaper
02-06-2004, 19:55
Also depends on the terrain.

I have learned the hard way that even with NODs, it can be so dark that it is dangerous to move in certain terrain.

TR

Desert Fox
02-06-2004, 20:12
Originally posted by The Reaper
Also depends on the terrain.

I have learned the hard way that even with NODs, it can be so dark that it is dangerous to move in certain terrain.

TR

Thank you.

Question: does it would be possible (Does an ODA can call for that) to launch any IR flare, or to use IR lamp. May be an IR flare or lamp would be good in a mission in wich the eny is lacking in technology.
What do you think about that?

The Reaper
02-06-2004, 21:03
I think that there are too many IR detectors on almost any battlefield nowdays to use any high intensity IR source.

NVDs have low powered illumination capability, and IR flashlight type illuminators are available, but when there are less than a dozen of you in the area, facing MANY more enemy, do you really want to call attention to yourself with a flare or high intensity light source?

Just my .02.

TR

Razor
02-06-2004, 21:19
"How to navigate in total darkness", or "Why You Want to Have a Tritium Illuminated Compass".

Desert Fox
02-06-2004, 21:33
Originally posted by The Reaper
I think that there are too many IR detectors on almost any battlefield nowdays to use any high intensity IR source.

NVDs have low powered illumination capability, and IR flashlight type illuminators are available, but when there are less than a dozen of you in the area, facing MANY more enemy, do you really want to call attention to yourself with a flare or high intensity light source?

Just my .02.

TR

Hi TR,

Obviously the problem with any IR illuminating device is that it is not passive.

Thank you!


PS: excuse me for my imperfect English.

The Reaper
02-06-2004, 21:45
Your English is fine, and is much better than my French.

TR

QuietShootr
02-10-2004, 14:22
ok...I submit this for consideration by the QPs. I was dropped off alone at a point in total darkness and given the grid coordinate of my location. I had the grid of the target, so obviously all I had to do was shoot a bearing and go, right?

I ASSUMED (oops) that I was where they told me I was. It was really too dark to do much in the way of terrain association anyway, even with NOD. I shot a bearing and stepped off...after about 500 meters, I stopped to do a map check, and where I was didn't appear to correspond to where I thought I was. I eventually shot a back azimuth and went right back to where I started from, hoping I'd just gotten dicked up somehow. After a couple more forays through the woods in the dark, I decided that either a) I'm too dumb to be out here by myself or b) I must have copied incorrectly, or something. I tried at this point to locate myself using terrain association, but as I noted above I couldn't see shit. Eventually, I decided to park and wait for daylight so I could figure out where the fruck I was.

The short version was that the cadre had screwed up (really, not intentionally) and given me a bad grid for my location. I got back on track once I could see again, and eventually got where I was headed, albeit late.

Here's the question. Did I do the right thing? Once I figured out I was 'mis-oriented', I decided to move a hundred meters or so from the dropoff point (to evade potential OPFOR) and lay up, figuring that I didn't want to add insult to injury by wandering off to totally unfamiliar ground.

TIA,
QS

Razor
02-10-2004, 16:21
Was there a prominent linear feature (i.e. road, river, ridgeline) anywhere in your AO? If so, you might have been able to navigate to that, then run it in one direction or another to another easily identifiable feature, use that as your starting grid, then navigate to your first point. Same thing if there was some prominent point feature nearby, such as a hilltop/saddle, body of water, man-made feature, etc. Of course, these are just ideas, and may not apply to your scenario.

NousDefionsDoc
02-10-2004, 16:43
I'm with Razor on this, that's how I do it even when I can see. I don't know if they still call them this, but I was taught attack points. I terrain associate on the run to a point close to the target, a point I know I can't miss. The when I get there, I know exactly where I am and I get on a hard bearing until I get my exact point. If I don't find it, I just go back to the attack point (or another one closer) and do it again. I was taught this by a guy that was a Recon Marine in Vietnam, democratic People's Republic of. Its never failed me. Just my way.

QS, if you're going to move off and wait, I would suggest at least small arms range - better to build good habits early.

QuietShootr
02-10-2004, 17:06
Razor's answer is probably what I should have done. I was not 'in practice' doing nav when this happened, and so I fell back on the thought that I should just stop before I fucked up worse...lol.

Excellent point on moving out of small arms range. This was a regional sniper comp, and I was doing my quiet as a mouse routine.

NousDefionsDoc
02-10-2004, 17:09
Stopping is not a bad plan. Remember the maxim - First thing to do when you find yourself in a hole is stop digging.

Nothing wrong with cease and desist while you get it together.

Edit to add - its ok to stop to get it together, just don't take too long.

QuietShootr
02-10-2004, 17:14
To answer the question, yes, there was a road within a k or so, but I didn't see that until the morning. It was a deserted country road so there were no traffic noises.

NousDefionsDoc
02-10-2004, 17:27
Originally posted by The Reaper
Also depends on the terrain.

I have learned the hard way that even with NODs, it can be so dark that it is dangerous to move in certain terrain.

TR

LOL - I never saw him fall, but sounds like there's a story in there.

When I went through, we had a Nepalese LT on my RS Team. Wouldn't move at night. So I asked him why. "I'm standing here beside myself not understanding why you Americans insist on moving around at night. You must very still be at night."

Took two days, but he finally told me why: "There are tigers in the woods and they hunt at night."

Never was able to convince the TACs that there were tigers in the woods in NC.

I did watch one CO fall one night, on a pipe over a deep ditch. I was medicking and humping the radio. Point 1 was about 500 meters before the ditch. So he says call it in

"Code word"
"Roger Out"

Point 2 was just short of the ditch

"Call it in"
"Code word"
"Roger Out".

So he starts across the ditch and falls, straddling the pipe.

I called in the Point 1 code word again

"Code word 1"
"Roger...Huh?", and the CO heard me.

"Smart-assed medic. Help me up and find something in that bag for my testes." LOL

Funny thing was, he and I were doing it all in hand signals in the dark, but I understood every word. Hard not to laugh when you're whispering and using hand signals.

The Reaper
02-10-2004, 17:50
Originally posted by NousDefionsDoc
LOL - I never saw him fall, but sounds like there's a story in there.



In the funniest story, it was Jerry and Dale, and we were trying to move in pitch darkness in the middle of the Grand Anse Forest in Grenada.

I'd like to get Jerry's version here, but after he just disappeared right in front of me for about the tenth time while walking point with NODs AND a flashlight, but this time, there was a noticable delay before I heard him hit, we figured it was time to stop and lay up.

We are pulled up into tight back to back perimeter (less a small detail with Tim and Chief who were supposed to move quickly on an improved route) and it is absolutely dark under the double and triple canopy growth. All of a sudden, a tremendous groan splits the air and something VERY large and heavy starts falling, literally shaking the ground when it hit. It was a huge tree, and it fell so close to the perimeter that we could feel the breeze as it went down.

Someone said "Holy S**T, that was close!!"

I started laughing and the Team Sergeant (Mike) asks me what is so funny about almost getting killed.

I just say, "Hey, Mike, it is Zero Dark Thirty in the middle of a jungle in Grenada, and the forest is falling around us. What the Hell else can we do about it?" The other guys started laughing too, and the Grenadans decided we were too crazy to mess with after that.

What a life.

TR

NousDefionsDoc
02-10-2004, 18:02
What a life.

Roger that Boss.

Indiantown Gap, worst storm in 100 years in the region. We'd get about halfway up and somebody would fall, so all 6 of us would climb back down, check on the latest victim, help him up and start back up that damned rock.

When my turn to fall came, we were really close to the top and worn out. Down I go. Fell all the way to the bottom. Jaime was the TS. "Want us to come down and help you?"

"No man, I didn't break anything important and I wouldn't ask anybody to make that climb again. I'll be along directly. If I don't make it in a couple of days, tell my wife she should have gotten a job. Oh, and tell Big Head I'm whippin' his ass if I ever get back up there, I can hear him laughing from down here."

LOL