Recon & Surveillance Course Review by Johnny Mac

The following review comes by way of Johnny Mac and was posted at his forum, Unchained Preppers. Check em out, great folks and a no-BS forum.

This AAR (After Action Review) is to briefly outline my attendance of the Recon & Surveillance two-day class facilitated by NCScout blog owner of

Facilitator NCScout and six students. The student’s skill range was, former military to novice – Like me. NCScout also had two assistants or specialists that worked 1:1 with each student.

Saturday – Sunday, February 23-24, 2019. Classes started at 0900 hrs. both days. The class ended Saturday at 1600 hrs. for dinner then picked up again for the night portion at 1900 hrs. till 2100 hrs. Sunday start was 0900 hrs. and concluded at 1430 hrs. post an AAR session.

North Central North Carolina

The class rallied at 0800 hrs. Saturday morning after a hearty breakfast put on again by NCScout’s family. We convoyed over to the location where the class was going to be conducted and our home for the next two days.

Starting at 0910 hrs. Saturday, a quick review of the next two days agenda commenced.

> Pace count,
> Stealth movement,
> Review of patrolling hand signals,
> Review and practice of Squad travel while on patrol,
> Proper Break Contact drills,
> Actual patrol (s),
> Setting up a Hide and OP/LP,
> Night maneuvers,
> Review of camouflage at night,
> Enhancements to night patrols, e.g. NOD’s FLIR, etc.,
> Writing an Operations Order, and
> Running an Ops Order

Each block of the two-day agenda built on to the next block. The goal was to build a solid foundation for the group to execute on the final exercise or Ops Order Sunday morning.

During the two days NCScout had each three-man team hooked up with a specialist for more 1:1 instruction. At times the specialist’s doubled as the enemy and orchestrated ambushes on our patrols.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly in no order:

> Let me get this out first – The weather sucked! The area received rain Friday through Sunday in the totals of; .44/1.88/.14 of an inch per day. Temps hovered in the low 40’s and at 0330 hrs. Sunday morning, we had snow flurries.
> Except for Friday night and Saturday morning, MRE’s was the primary food source for the team. Some students brought treats to share amongst the group, e.g. bear, venison, summer sausage, bacon, etc. Saturday night NCScout made a stew.
> As is NCScout’s MO, (modus operandi) the class blocks within the two days agenda were well thought out and progressively brought the student along the path to the end game – An actual operation.
> There were three structures at the class area to stay in. Two tobacco barns and one Amish shed. One barn and the shed were used for sleeping and keeping out of the elements. A fire was lighted Saturday afternoon and was kept fueled during our stay at the camp.
> All segments of the two-day agenda were done with the students geared-up, including primary and secondary weapons.
> Although this 63-year-old did relatively well, I would encourage all participants in the future before you take this class, to concentrate on squats and upper torso exercises before you arrive. Squatting frequently while wearing 20 pounds of gear and lugging around an 8-pound rifle is tough on the healthiest of us. To not have been in shape would have surely sucked.
> A more detailed list on what we should bring for the patrolling part of the class was suggested for future classes. We all were prepared however, it resulted in many bringing too much to the camp. Some students had everything including the kitchen sink.
> The members of the class blended well by Saturday morning. The ‘after dinner discussions’ certainly cemented the group. As I have reported in past AAR’s, what I learned from my fellow classmates was just as valuable as what we learned during the days instruction.
> All the students but one, had been to NCScout’s RTO 101 class. Several had been to RTO 101 & 201 class.
> As I have reported in previous AAR’s on NCScout’s classes, NCScout and the specialists who supported him, were soft spoken folks who were dedicated to the student getting as much from the class as was possible. If you like the ‘DI’ (Drill Instructor) type of facilitator, you will not like NCScout’s style.
> I think we can all agree that the coming years will be treacherous in this country and around the globe. If you have put away your family’s 3-B’s great! Now you need to get some training! To not do so means you and your family will not survive long enough to use those preps you have in your cellar.

God Bless & 73,

I’ll re-emphasize that the weather really was the absolute worst imaginable. Cold, wet, and ankle deep mud everywhere. Much of the training ground was actually flooded when we arrived, and conditions only deteriorated further. Hypothermia was a very real concern of mine for everyone in the class. But then again, if you can do it under those conditions, doing it any other time is cake.

My hat is off to all those who attended. It would have been easy to bow out, call it a weekend, and wait for better conditions. But none of y’all did that. Sticking out over two inches of rain takes some brass ones.

If you’re wanting solid training in communications, small unit skills or survival, check out the training schedule. I’ve got an RTO Course coming up at the end of March with a few spots open.

6 thoughts on “Recon & Surveillance Course Review by Johnny Mac

  1. Papa76

    I cannot add much to this…. J Mac nailed it! It was a great training experience and I know NC Scout did the best he could with the conditions he was given. Knowing that part of the training ground was underwater didn’t help but he shifted fire and drove on with the mission. Excellent work brother!! I can think of a few times in my Army days that the conditions sucked as bad…. all my classmates were top notch and did an excellent job!!!

    I am glad ya’ll enjoyed the Bear!!

  2. Pingback: Brushbeater: Recon & Surveillance Course Student AAR | Western Rifle Shooters Association

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