Over this past weekend, I attended the Wilderness Survival Course put together by Jim Green at Southeast School of Survival (SE-SOS) near Cartersville, Georgia. Jim is a former Air Force Combat Survival Instructor, and has spent over 30 years learning and teaching the survival disciplines (full bio here). His school operates inside Red Top Mountain State Park with special arrangements from the park allowing use of their entire primitive grounds and the land surrounding it for instruction and practice.
Saturday morning began with the twelve attendees as well as Jim meeting at the park and spending a few minutes meeting one another and receiving some overview information from Jim about what we could expect from the course. Each attendee spent a short time explaining their background and purpose in attending. It was made apparent that a wide range of outdoor experience was represented. After a bit of getting to know everyone, Jim launched right into the start of the instruction - beginning land navigation.
Ten years ago, I was thoroughly taught and tested in land navigation by the former military instructors at the ALERT Academy in Big Sandy, TX. Land navigation was a critical component of the search and rescue and disaster relief work we were trained for, and it was a major point of instruction at the academy. However, since that time, my navigation reliance has been on either GPS or on familiarity with the territory to such an extent that virtually all of my navigation ability was lost.
Part II of this course