Why are people so afraid of land navigation and find it so difficult?

Why are people so afraid of land navigation and find it so difficult? In every branch of the military, it's seen as some arcane art designed to lose boots and officers to the aether forever.

How hard is it for people to identify a few landmarks, draw some lines, and operate a compass?

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  1. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >05/13/2024 appears at the bottom of my monitor

  2. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Because navigation is fricking difficult, especially in a deep forest. People are known to panick and wonder off away from their original destination. Its not worse than cave/underwater cave exploration, but it requires having a keen sense of direction and environmental awareness.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      Cave diving is scary because everything is dark, there are few to no landmarks, and you're navigating in 3d with no map. If you're in the brush, it's often well lit (or can be) and you're effectively on a 2d plane and DO have a map and navigational aids. Having a plan before setting out and occasionally shooting landmarks to confirm you're at least mostly on path makes it even easier.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        Plus the whole not having everything above you collapse and crush/ trap you

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          Along with the whole drowning if any of your bulky equipment snags in the tight squeezes and jagged passes deal.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        >Cave diving is scary because everything is dark, there are few to no landmarks, and you're navigating in 3d with no map
        Nah what really makes cave diving terrifying is the knowledge that if you ever, for any reason, kick up the silt, you are dead. You are totally blind and it will not settle until your bones are clean.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      https://i.imgur.com/4T9QjUr.png

      2LTs are moronic kids who aren't used to being in a position of responsibility. it's easy to get lost when you're overwhelmed by shit you haven't yet learned to deal with.

      that's why you have senior enlisted and more senior officers to tard wrangle them. the whole position is mostly just there to serve as an internship for future officers.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        I had a wonderful time as an O-1.
        >hey sarge, can you help me with this
        >ask the sarge
        >hey sarge, captain says this that and the other can you help me out with doing everything while I go hang around him and not do any work thanks
        >your guess is as good as mine, this is what the major said
        >I dunno why I was with the major, just was in the area
        >hey sarge, this is what’s happening tomorrow, can you do whatever for me
        >I dunno, sarge…lemme ask the captain
        >hey private, can you run this over for me, sarge is busy
        >hey sarge, I was with the major again, he says we are gonna do this this and that so can you get everybody ready for whatever so we don’t look like morons
        >beats me
        >I have no idea
        >sarge can fix it
        >new sarge? Oh well, he can do it also I’m sure
        >bye everybody, major says I’m going to go be an adjutant officer or whatever the hell that means (42B)
        >get promoted
        >yes sir, won’t be a problem sir, I know exactly who to ask to get this done immediately
        >hey sarge, colonel says he needs this this and that from you guys
        It was great. My collegiate career being as lazy as possible prepared me for the military life.

  3. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Lol how tf you get lost inna woods hahaha like homie just go shake a tree. Lmao.

  4. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    There's a lot of very easy ways to frick it up, and despite the apparent simplicity, it takes some regular practice to do well. Methods of keeping distance according to how you walk, for example, will change a bit every couple of years.
    Meter-accurate GPS is now somewhat ubiquitous, so it's a skill that doesn't really need to be emphasized so much anymore.
    The reason 2lts are famous for getting everyone lost is because they're learning, too.

  5. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >Three norths
    We're averaging this shit and trekking 5 km, yolo. Ain't got time or the patience to figure out back isthmus or find identifiable point.

  6. 1 month ago
    Anonymous
    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous
  7. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >Be making 1.5km movement to OBJ
    >Plot it, choose route, set Rally Points and backstops at notable terrain features
    >Forgot about GM angle when getting azimuth
    >Now you're 300m off course and have no clue where the frick 3rd squad is

    Shit happens

  8. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    I go hunting, kayaking, and camping and there are times when I'll be navigating and "feel" like I should have seen a landmark or something and then doubt will slowly creep in, it always works out but for me it's definitely a mental thing. The other thing I've found is the terrain "on the ground" doesn't seem to match the map for one reason or another, it could be the terrain has changed since the map was surveyed, a creek dried up, some dirt road got washed out, obstruction of landmark by new foliage, or the time of day changes the light which messes with distance perception or landmark visibility.

    The first time you truly feel lost and alone is really eerie. The thing is you know you aren't going to starve, and if you're prepared you really don't need to worry about water and shelter but it can frick with your head when light is fading and you're looking at staying the night out somewhere you don't know where you are.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      An example of terrain changing is a time I went hunting in a spot I frequented. I get there by following a trail for some time, shoot off the trail at a bend and after 50 yards hit a creek and follow that to my spot. Well I never saw the creek, and the trees in that stand were not the oaks I expected. I got back on the trail and figured out some beavers dammed the creek upstream, and even though I say "I frequent that spot" it had been at least 2 years since I was last there.

      Another was scouting for new hunting spots with an old map, it indicated some swamps that were no longer there.

      The other thing I'd say about the "mystique" of navigating is that peoples' brains turn off after a few unknown/foreign words. It just takes a few: "Azimuth, back azimuth, declination, gm angle" it's like some dumb kid going to a mechanic; if the kid isn't remotely interested in cars or mechanical shit they will think the car is black magic and the mechanic is some kind of wizard.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      Honestly I usually use a phone to overlay breadcrumbs, waypoints, current position, and desired heading on USGS or USFS maps. Yes, you can navigate without this, but I've got shit to do during the week and I just wanna go fast. The ability to smack a waypoint down close to where I stashed the food cache on a good topo map without having to locate myself first is also really useful.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      An example of terrain changing is a time I went hunting in a spot I frequented. I get there by following a trail for some time, shoot off the trail at a bend and after 50 yards hit a creek and follow that to my spot. Well I never saw the creek, and the trees in that stand were not the oaks I expected. I got back on the trail and figured out some beavers dammed the creek upstream, and even though I say "I frequent that spot" it had been at least 2 years since I was last there.

      Another was scouting for new hunting spots with an old map, it indicated some swamps that were no longer there.

      The other thing I'd say about the "mystique" of navigating is that peoples' brains turn off after a few unknown/foreign words. It just takes a few: "Azimuth, back azimuth, declination, gm angle" it's like some dumb kid going to a mechanic; if the kid isn't remotely interested in cars or mechanical shit they will think the car is black magic and the mechanic is some kind of wizard.

      I want to say it's not that big a deal, but I'm old enough to have predated all the phone and GPS stuff, and have lived my whole life in rural areas with lots of solo hiking starting when I was like, 11, and learning how to use paper maps (often decades old) and a compass early. That's definitely not normal. That said, I honestly think tech has significantly eroded people's spatial capabilities. I've noticed the way a lot of the older gens use maps is fundamentally different, I use computer maps as basically big paper magic maps, where I can explore and zoom and build my own picture. But a ton of younger people just stick an earphone in and listen to the computer tell them where to go turn by turn. So I wouldn't be surprised if there are less universal foundational skill then in the past.

      You're right though that as I think back some stuff is non-intuitive. "Don't panic" does matter, like
      >The thing is you know you aren't going to starve, and if you're prepared you really don't need to worry about water and shelter but it can frick with your head when light is fading and you're looking at staying the night out somewhere you don't know where you are.
      Yeah just have to be comfortable with stopping and sleeping on it. Knowing when it's time to go to plan B is itself something of a skill that comes with experience. I've pushed a few times too hard when lost, and that was riskier then just making camp in a decent place with the fading light.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        >So I wouldn't be surprised if there are less universal foundational skill then in the past.
        We have no idea how bad it is
        >in busy airport
        >sitting near entrance to the bathrooms
        >wall and door signs saying bathrooms
        >ceiling sign visible from far away says bathrooms
        >watch multiple tech zombies shuffle by with phone in hand
        >they all blow by the bathroom and turn around
        >several walk past a second time before they figure out where the bathroom is

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          [...]
          I want to say it's not that big a deal, but I'm old enough to have predated all the phone and GPS stuff, and have lived my whole life in rural areas with lots of solo hiking starting when I was like, 11, and learning how to use paper maps (often decades old) and a compass early. That's definitely not normal. That said, I honestly think tech has significantly eroded people's spatial capabilities. I've noticed the way a lot of the older gens use maps is fundamentally different, I use computer maps as basically big paper magic maps, where I can explore and zoom and build my own picture. But a ton of younger people just stick an earphone in and listen to the computer tell them where to go turn by turn. So I wouldn't be surprised if there are less universal foundational skill then in the past.

          You're right though that as I think back some stuff is non-intuitive. "Don't panic" does matter, like
          >The thing is you know you aren't going to starve, and if you're prepared you really don't need to worry about water and shelter but it can frick with your head when light is fading and you're looking at staying the night out somewhere you don't know where you are.
          Yeah just have to be comfortable with stopping and sleeping on it. Knowing when it's time to go to plan B is itself something of a skill that comes with experience. I've pushed a few times too hard when lost, and that was riskier then just making camp in a decent place with the fading light.

          I used to ride my bike to work, even during our hellish Canadian winters, and it always struck me as odd to hear my coworkers complain about the weather.
          There I am, with three pairs of pants on, face all red from the cold, dripping in sweat, and they ask "man, did you check the weather?"
          Like, no, dude, I didn't check the goddamn weather, the weather already told me everything I needed to know about just by me going through it.
          Then it dawned on me, the total lack of perspective my co-workers had on my experience, or rather their own; They didn't think about the weather in terms of how vigorously you'll have to shiver to stay warm, or how long you can still move your hands when you aren't wearing gloves, they thought of the weather as if it were some psychic force that existed to sap their mental energy, like some wizard cast an evil curse
          And so it hit me; in this one way, I am free. I am free of the fear and loathing of the weather.
          This unassailable leviathan that seems so mighty to others hasn't been much more than a tiny pebble on my journey, because I took a step through that door and I never looked back.

          We humans are so wrapped up in our little webs of fear we think makes us safe that we forget to ask ourselves if it's even worth it to be afraid.
          A generation of metanoia.

          • 1 month ago
            Anonymous

            They checked the weather, and got abstract information about it that was presented through the lens of society
            You didn't check, so you didn't know that it was supposed to be bad
            I make this "mistake" too. I'm so obtuse that I don't know that I am supposed to be afraid
            Stay free anon

          • 1 month ago
            Anonymous

            >they didn't know I TREKK Through 5 inches of snow to get here
            Your observation about matter is right but please relax a little. The context is a friendly water cooler talk with your fellow deskjob gays about nothing or just nagging so the topic isn't work or any person, why are you so gunhoe and prideful with the fact that you can bike your way in the weather to a sheltered job when we all know plenty of poor gay's job is to repair the damage by the weather while still in the same weather?

            • 1 month ago
              Anonymous

              He's a cyclist

              • 1 month ago
                Anonymous

                TCD

          • 1 month ago
            Anonymous

            i think it's more that they were wondering why you would spend an hour in such an uncomfortable setting when you're in for another 8 hours of another uncomfortable setting. some of people report that their morning commutes are the most peaceful time of the day if they don't live in LA or something

  9. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >Be me
    >Freshman in ROTC
    >Go to a military base turned park with remaining landmarks to practice landnav
    >Get separated into groups with a Sophomore and Junior, Seniors sent to do it themselves.
    >NCO comes with us
    >Notice we're close to the landmark, point in the direction
    >Everyone thinks I'm moronic
    >NCO doesn't help
    >They get us lost
    This is why LTs suck at landnav, they are conditioned from the start not to listen to lower ranking people.

  10. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >play DayZ before maps got popular
    >need to coordinate with my friends where they spawned and run to them

    Stupid butter bars need to play actual good vidya otherwise..

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      That was my favorite part was learning how to orienteer. Year one dayz was great.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        And then they added the gps, ofc.

  11. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Depends a lot on the terrain, if the woods are thick enough you can't see hills good luck.

  12. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    land nav's a fricking meme, GPS is 30 years old now

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      How long do your GPS batteries last shit breath?

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        i run them directly off my internal biocells

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          Hacker

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      >thinking GPS can be relied on in a peer war.

  13. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >Why are people so afraid of land navigation and find it so difficult?
    idk, but i find it funny because i'm the opposite of all the dumb frick npcs
    i can naturally navigate by terrain features and guess sighted distances, but i cant remember stupid street names or where everyone's favorite goy store is

  14. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Most humans cannot properly conceptualize XYZ 3D space and utilize scant external input to identify their position and maintain an optimal yet dynamic course to their objectives. I have a hyper developed sense of 3D space and an awareness of my position and orientation both in XYZ and temporally.. I've come to understand I'm a freak compared to most humans because of this. I've the surface of earth mapped in my head. I don't need help finding any location on Earth and can take you there on a digital simulation or in real life. Yes, I'm a licensed pilot and my primary career involves various guidance systems from aerospace, to military aviation and underground in directional drilling. I run and maintain everything from rate gyroscopes to magnetometers and accelerometers. Also terrain scanning and celestial reading autonomous guidance. Most humans are blind worms compared to me. I've come to accept that few humans are any good at navigation. Less than 1 in 100 modern humans are any good at navigation.

  15. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Anyone who says it isn't hard to navigate has never actually tried to navigate. And no, reading a trail map and finding the big lake isn't navigating.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      its a completely useless skill. there are signs, settlements and roads everywhere so you always know where you are even without gps

  16. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    I was really only good at land-nav because I went through scouts, then the military and practiced at it- even then, you throw enough duress, pressure, gunfire and lack of landmarks you can still get yourself into a lot of trouble, Desert, Night time and Jungle fricking suck to get through and one mistake in mountainous terrain can mean you're losing an entire day having to find another route through, over or around.
    >but muh GPS
    GPS gets jammed, the battery runs out, you drop it and break it, it rained, got wet and doesn't work anymore
    You still need to be smart enough to figure out the GPS bearings, apply them to your map and then work out a heading to the next location, taking into account you also don't want to end up falling arse over head from some kind of cliff, climbing a mountain or fording a fast flowing river.

    Everyone's fricking great at land nav when its easy, the real challenge for adults is managing it when everything fricking sucks

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      look at the ukraine war, do you think anyone there cant find a certain village? there are literally roads and signs with directions and distances everywhere and we are talking about a low population density country here.

      do you think anyone there has trouble finding bakhmut?

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        Ukies were covering, destroying or altering road signage on a grand scale during the early days of invasion. Same thing happened in Czechoslovakia during the 1968 "brotherly help" invasion.

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        Ukraine is the size of a piece of shit you fricking 3rd worlder. Think bigger. Small ass European countries yeah we get it you can walk to another country whopdee fricking do.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      >Everyone's fricking great at land nav when its easy,
      nah, everyone fricking sucks at land nav even when its easy
      i've seen boots get lost in an urban area, even "remember where [GIANT FRICKOFF NIGHTLIFE STREET] is and don't stray too far from it (there's nothing there anyway)" gets homies lost as frick.

      i have stories from the navy (thoughbeit navy people shouldn't be doing land nav but they do the much harder marine nav???) where people ashore got lost as frick like two blocks away from our designated pickup/dropoff for shore leave. literally incapable of navigating a grid or keeping a sense of direction just because the signs have ß in it

      >So I wouldn't be surprised if there are less universal foundational skill then in the past.
      We have no idea how bad it is
      >in busy airport
      >sitting near entrance to the bathrooms
      >wall and door signs saying bathrooms
      >ceiling sign visible from far away says bathrooms
      >watch multiple tech zombies shuffle by with phone in hand
      >they all blow by the bathroom and turn around
      >several walk past a second time before they figure out where the bathroom is

      to be fair airports suck ass

  17. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Is there any good literature if I want to get into navigating/orienteering?
    I generally know how to use a compass and read maps, but there seems to be more to it.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      There are no books on how to do land nav that matter. You just have to do it, the same with any other skill. It's really not that hard either.

  18. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >Why are people so afraid of land navigation and find it so difficult?
    Only people asking this are people who haven't done landnav themselves. Frick off, poser homosexual.

  19. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    Holy frick this is the most autistic thread I’ve seen in a long while

  20. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    I come from, and live in, a barren arctic coast landscape. Navigation at sea comes as easy to me as kiss my hand, but I haven't needed to navigate much on land, since I'm used to seeing nothing for miles and miles. Given a map and a compass I expect I'd puzzle it out eventually, like taking bearings from landmarks and following a course, but what do you do when you're in a dense forest or out on an endless plain or plateau? Do you need to know your exact position then, or is an approximate position good enough?

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      It depends: are you calling in air support?

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        Likely not, but for the sake of the exercise, suppose I do. Do I give my best position by dead reckoning (I've been walking along average course X for Y time at speed Z from a known landmark) and mark the target area somehow, or do I mark my position when the plane is near and let the pilot know that the target is bearing this and distance that from my position?
        Sorry if I'm asking some obvious questions, but I am very much a civilian and find it an interesting topic.

  21. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    I think it's kinda weird. I grew up in Sweden and we have orienteering as a mandatory part of our PE in school so basically everyone knows how to use a map and compass. None of the guys in my platoon had any problems with it but we were scouts in the recon platoon. Some land nav events we had with the infantry i had to end up basically herding these idiots around and help them find the points because they were so lost in the sauce. But that's basically the recon platoons job so i was ok with it.

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