Tier One Navigation Development

For U.S. military personnel preparing for the operator assessment and selection course at a camp in West Virginia.

The goal of our TONDEV course is to provide you an environment and framework that reflects many of the same conditions that you’ll find during your land navigation phase.  Our training area spans more than 45 square miles along the Pennsylvania border, just 20 miles north of Kingwood, West Virginia.  While we cannot remotely replicate what their cadre will ultimately present you at selection, we can offer you a physically and mentally challenging program over similar terrain so that you can develop the experience, ability, and confidence that you’ll need to succeed.

You must already be a competent navigator with cross-country experience.  We will answer your questions and fine-tune your technique, but if at any point during this program we are not confident in your overall skill and physical fitness levels, then you will be asked to leave with no refund available.  If you have any general questions, especially those concerning your present ability, we strongly recommend that you contact us for answers before your register.  Our Advanced Military Land Navigation is designed to dovetail with TONDEV to help make for an especially intensive and productive week of learning.

True North training area – Click to enlarge.

True North has much experience working with the SOF community.  We have trained individuals from the Naval Special Warfare Command and Army Special Forces, and instructors from Army, Air Force, and Marine units, including a Tier Two regiment.

This program lasts three condensed days.  Day One will be spent verifying your ability during a day and night session.  Day Two will begin in the pre-dawn hours and conclude after sunset; the distance between checkpoints will average 10,000 meters while you sport laden rucks; for your safety, you will be fitted with a satellite-communicator that, among other features, allows us to track you.  Day Three will build on the previous days with a day session that emphasizes technique, then conclude by 1700.

Our training area is situated on Forbes State Forest lands located on the western edge of the Appalachian Mountains in southwestern Pennsylvania, along the West Virginia border.  The vegetation, terrain, and climate spans the mix from open, easy, and pleasant to dense, strenuous, and harsh.  This is one reason why this area is also used by the U.S special operations community based at Camp Dawson.

Overview of the program details:

  • Course Duration: 3-Day / 2-Night (approximately 35 hours of training time).
  • Start / End Times: 0900 Day One /  1700 Day Three.
  • Fee: $1,200 per person.
  • Location: Quebec Run Wild Area (see below for more detail).
  • Maximum Group Size: 4
  • Minimum Group Size: The course requires a minimum of two persons to run this training.  If we are unable to meet this size, True North will fully refund your payment with as much advance notice as possible.
  • Description of Physical Difficulty – Strenuous:  This course involves hiking with laden backpacks over extended distances at a steady pace over varying terrain that will include off-trail sections, rough spots, unexpected obstacles, and low to steep terrain inclines and declines.  This course is conducted in varying weather conditions, including hot, cold, humid, rain, and snow, or a mixed combination.  This is a very physically challenging course so it is best suited for those in excellent physical condition and ready for a long day.
  • Overnight Accommodation:  You can chose to either spend the night in the woods at the training area or stay in a local hotel or home-share.  Once you register for the course, we will provide more detailed information with recommendations.

If you would like to consider private training for yourself or your unit, contact us so that we can offer you options and issues to consider, like pricing and scheduling. 

Commonly Asked Questions:

What happens when I register?   We will personally follow up with you to explain the steps needed to finalize your booking.  Once we receive your completed forms, we will send you a detailed course information sheet which will contain all of the applicable details, like required and recommended gear, exact gathering point, and general driving directions.

I am in the pipeline for a support role, can I attend?   Most likely, but we recommend that you telephone Erik (412.913.6000) to discuss since your assessment is different.

I’ve already completed another True North land navigation course, may I register for this one?  If you’ve taken our Advanced Military Land Navigation or Basic Military Land Navigation course, you potentially may be able to register for this course, but telephone Erik (412.913.6000) to discuss before you register.

Are bathroom facilities available during the courseSince Quebec Run is a designated “wilderness area” there is no infrastructure whatsoever, including toilets.

What kind of gear do I need to bring?  After you register for the course, True North will send you a course information sheet which will contain all of the program details, including a detailed list of required and optional gear.  Our goal is to help balance what you need to get the most safely out of your training against minimizing your costs.

Do you loan any equipment?  We can loan you a mil-spec lensatic compass and protractor during your training.  We also make some additional equipment and supplies available for your convenience which we sell at-cost.

To learn more, contact us at your convenience.

Stay in Touch