FORT KNOX, Ky.- 3rd Regiment Cadet Initial Entry Training (CIET) Bravo Company Cadets went through map reading and terrain analysis training on June 28.
Map reading and terrain analysis teaches Cadets how to properly interpret maps, calculate distances, assess terrain, count paces and use a protractor with a map.
Observer Trainer Mentor (OTM) 2nd Lt. Lawrence Lincoln said that learning to read a map is a critical skill for mission success.
“Here, Cadets are learning the essential skills to read a map, assess terrain and then develop a plan for the mission. Say you don’t properly calculate your azimuth, your pace count is off, or you don’t plot your grid coordinates correctly; your planned route will be wrong which can impact arrival time or you might miss your target location all together,” Lincoln added, “All of these elements play into a correctly planned route and timing. When you’re on a mission and you have lives in your hand, you can’t afford to miss your target location, lose the element of surprise or lose time.”
During training, Cadets were given protractors to analyze and calculate distances between points. After calculations, Cadets walked out 100 meters, counting their steps to them calculate the average in order to figure out their pace count. Cadets then used their calculated pace to reach a destination in a field area. Azimuths were also used in the field area to calculate for different types of terrain like hills and uneven ground that might affect timing.
Cdt. Dasha Wright, Southern University and A&M College in Baton Rouge, said she had learned map reading and terrain analysis previously.
“If you don’t exercise these skills often, you will lose them. This training is a good refresher course on how to navigate a land course. I don’t like to be lost so it’s good to know where you’re going.”
The map reading and terrain analysis training prepares Cadets for the day and night land navigation courses on June 30. Cadets must utilize their training to properly navigate both courses and reach their target locations at the right times.