April 2014 Notes

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March FTX was a big success. Weather was good and the ground dried out that weekend. Still plan on doing more hand signals and Land-Nav in April.

April FTF has been rescheduled for the 19th as an FTX for a continuation of the training started at the March FTX. Same place. 0930 to 1700 or there abouts. Bring your gear and supplies. Hopefully you have your copy of Larsen’s  Light Infantry Tactics for Small Teams and Mike and Jack’s book, A Failure of Civility.

In the mean time, read up on Chapter 5 — Other Tactical Operations in the Recon and Scout Platoon Manual over on the sidebar under Guides and Manuals.

Two Man Team Movement Techniques

Two Man Team Movement Techniques




March 2014 Notes

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March FTX will commence at 1700 on the 14th at Training Area North.  Exercises will include Land-Nav, Gear Selection and Ruck Packing, Hand Signals and Radio Communications.  There will be a few others that are still being finalized.  March weather can be anything from blizzard to hurricane, but we train regardless, so show up prepared.   Any last-minute additional notes will come via email.  

home sweet home

February FTF went well with a big discussion on many topics.  The FTF/FTX schedule is finalized for the year and several extra events are being planned.

As always, if you have some specific training you want to add to the schedule, send it in and we’ll find a way to work it in.

Alamance County Rangers


There is another type of warfare—new in its intensity, ancient in its origin—war by guerrillas, subversives, insurgents, assassins; war by ambush instead of by combat, by infiltration instead of aggression, seeking victory by eroding and exhausting the enemy instead of engaging him. It preys on unrest.
President John F. Kennedy, 1962

Fifty Years Ago….

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Was a time once, when a President took his Oath of Office as the solemn promise it is supposed to be, and respected the relationship between the government and the governed.  Got this from Mike Miles.

Kennedy on Minutemen

February Notes

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February FTF will be 1300 on the 16th, at the same site as last month.  We had a good bunch of people show up for the planning session at January’s FTF.  Plus there were two new first time visitors.  This month we will discuss load bearing gear and the IFAKs.  The training schedule for March FTX will also be discussed.  There is still time to order Larsen’s “Tactics for Small Units”  and “A Failure of Civility” before March FTX.

If you’re interested in a chest rig, Breach Bang Clear has a good review of the 5.11 TacTec rig here.  Padded shoulder harness, six magazine pouches, and some extra molle.  $70.

511-Tactec-chest rig1

Training Round-up


These are some of the local  2014 Training Opportunities.  If you have training classes that maybe should be on this list, feel free to comment them in.

Defensive Training Group
Mar 22nd.  One day land-nav course in south-east Michigan.  $150.

Train the Trainer.  May 16th – 18th.  A three-day course that will train you to train and lead a four to six man team to operate in a SHTF environment.  $500.

Georgia Force on Force
No sched yet.  Grenadier?

Grenadier just added in comments:

Ga FoF will be holding another level 1 SUT class March 1st at the same location as our prior classes. We hope to have a special guest instructor who will incorporate some edged weapons training based on Martial Blade Concepts.

Grey Group Training
Bob Vogel is running his two-day “World Class Pistol Skills” class in Carthage on August 9th and 10th.  $450.

Mason Dixon Tactical
Feb 8th and 9th.  J.C. Dodge is offering a new Rural Buddy Team Essentials course.  A stripped down version of his RTTC class made for a two-man buddy team to train in one weekend.  $400

Update from J.C. 

RBTEC — Mar 22-23, Apr 26-27, July 12-13, Aug 9-10, Sept 13-14, Nov 15-16

Survival Essentials Course — May 17-18, Oct 11-12

RTTC-B phase I and II — June 16-20

RBTEC-Rural Buddy Team Essentials Course
RTTC-B Rural Team Tactics Course-Basic
Survival Essentials Course is a wilderness survival course

Max Velocity Tactical
Max has scheduled his Combat Rifle/Contact Drills weekend course just about every other weekend between now and mid-December so there is really no excuse not to go up there some weekend.  $400 and bring 5-600 rounds.  Three day Combat Patrol classes build on the Combat Rifle course and are offered together as a five-day school about half a dozen times this summer and fall, if you can get the week off to go.

Nature Reliance Survival School
May 22nd – 25th, NRS is holding their Tactical Survival school.  $300.  Mostly “on the run” type survival training,  with a mix of camp craft and land-nav, the class teaches the small unit skill of avoidance and keeping a low profile, and some combat skills for when there is no other choice.

July 19th, NRS is holding their Wilderness and Remote First Aid class.  $125.   Covers treating basic trauma such as shock, hypothermia, burns, gun shot wounds, splints and how to put together a good medical kit.

Randall’s Adventure and Training
Free one-day land-nav classes are already filing up for the year. The three-day Field Survival classes are offered once each month thru mid-December.  $150 plus you get a nice Jim Randall ESEE-3 knife.

ESEE - Knife

class knife

South Carolina Gun School
Offers a one-day Intro to Carbine class and a one-day Tactical Rifle class.  Major difference between the two classes is Tactical Rifle covers shoot and move, and transitioning between pistol and rifle.  500 rifle and 200 pistol rounds means a good bit of shooting for one day.  Still, only $150.

Squad School

John Hawse doesn’t have the schedule out for this year yet.  Last November he held the $500 Long Range Shooting class in Texas where they have room to shoot.  May be New York isn’t such a good place to train these days.

The Path Finder School
Offers a 3-day ($300) Basic Survival class and a 4-day ($500) Advanced Survival class nearly every month thru the end of September.  Primarily emergency survival classes, where you only have what’s in your pockets, they teach basic fire and shelter, land-nav, and collecting food and water. (Hint:  you already have the skills to pass these classes).

Tiger Swan

James Reese, former SFOD-D, Delta Force, still trains either the 3-day ($750)  or 5-day ($950) Pistol and Carbine class every month this year, at the Tigerswan Range Complex down in Autryville.  Contact either Steve or Greg at training@tigerswan.com.


Was initially hesitant to include these two training courses from Academi.  Firstly, they are expensive.  Secondly,  they’re not directly related to irregular warfare / unconventional forces oriented type skills.  These are mostly shooter schools.  They are excellent schools for someone wanting to get into a Personal Protection Detail, for example.   Plus they offer a wide range of other classes towards that end.  For those of us that might not spend every waking moment holding a carbine, these classes are a bit on the overkill side.  The five-day pistol and carbine class ($1200) is probably the same as it was taught back when Blackwater ran the training at Myock.  After 500 rounds a day on both your carbine and pistol, your hands and arms will feel it and you begin to hear gunfire in your sleep.  You will learn not only how to clean your weapons, but exactly why you must clean your weapons.  You will do this everyday for five days, under various conditions and transition thru a lot of different positions.  Realistic training?  Yes.  Only you can answer the question, “Is this what I anticipate doing everyday?” 

The Long Range Shooting class is now in two parts ($1200 each) and  both require expending 200 rounds. Not too many other places you can practice shooting moving targets from 600 to 1200 yards.   Will you be a “pipe hitter” at the end of the class?  Maybe, maybe not.  But your instructors surely are.  Maybe, if they offered us half a dozen free training slots, we’d recommend them a little higher. 

Others That Provide Low Profile Training

This is in no way an all-inclusive list of local training opportunities.  There are other sources for local training in Concealed Carry, Wilderness Survival, and  Field Medicine, to name just a few specialized areas.  Seek them out and do something this spring.

Long Range Shooters

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Max had a guest blogger named “Skittles” write,  at length, about the role of long-range shooters in Small Unit Tactics.  Not purely in the role of sniper but more than just Squad Designated Marksman.


The comments section over there  flew into a pedigree frenzy about who was a sniper, and that was a distraction.  Well,  we’re not the military here (insert laugh-trak here)  and about the only paper we want to see is that piece nailed to  a post about 200 yards down range.  Talk, talk, talk, or bang, bang, bang.  One is more important than the other.


Pumkin meets 300 Mag Front R

Pumkin  meets 300 Mag Back R

One of the little jewels that stood out was this:

For this article’s intents and purposes, the squad will be compromised of 13 men. It will consist of three fire teams of two buddy pairs and a squad leader that is free floating and attached to the team he deems necessary at the time. Fire teams Alpha and Bravo will each be a fire team consisting of two rifleman buddy pairs. Fire team Charlie will consist of two buddy pairs made of one assault scout and one rifleman. The squad organization and number of assault scouts and rifleman can and will change according the squad leader’s discretion and the mission demands. For this article, however, this is our setup.

Training Scenarios

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Historically, there have been several militia sites in the past that have started threads on various scenarios.  The threads usually get a very enthusiastic response.  Then the heavy duties follow-up and hammer out a detailed end-to-end solution.  Then the various trolls and wussies show up and try to create chaos and distractions.  A few sites have even gone as far as to completely scrub the discussion boards with a warning that these kind of discussions might leave a negative impression on potential new members that may be browsing for the first time and/or this is dangerous and attracts attention from the wrong kind of people.  So they end up doing nothing.  And you know that’s a crappy way for things to be.

This year, we will start some scenarios as thought experiments.  By not publishing everybody’s comments, we will hopefully avoid the traps of the past that lead to failure.  Spend some time playing thru the scenario and come up with your own solution(s).  If you hit a wall, help  is just an email away.  These scenarios will be discussed at the FTF meetings and really good ones might turn up at the next FTX.

This month’s scenario is submitted by a member.

Some unspecified disaster makes all roads are impassable. No vehicle traffic is possible. Big roads, little roads.  Can’t be seen on the roads.    This could possibly be due to an extreme weather event like a hurricane or a widespread snow/ice storm.  And this could be similar to events after the Boston Marathon bombing where everyone was (ordered) told to shelter-in-place, “for your own protection”.  Anyway, you are at work when the disaster happens and your instinct says you have to leave work and head home.

This is an exercise that will require your LAND-NAV and survival skills.  You are not being actively hunted, but there is the risk of being picked-up and detained by “the authorities” if you get too careless during your mission.  Like being seen traveling the roads.
This is not about VIPER road blocks, sealing off the cities after a financial collapse, or a large-scale invasion from anywhere on or off the planet.  (Those are different scenarios, and will be taken up at another time.) 

Plan your route, using all currently available means of tactical route analysis, and book/experiential knowledge available.  You are limited to your existing, real-world personal resources.   Assume current likely weather; assume no commercial comm or internet available.


Develop your personal “Get Home Plan”
1) E&E planning
2) bugout/get-home-bag spec
3) what does your family need to plan on doing until you make it home

Work on this.  Next FTF is on the 19th.

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