I recently finished attending the Redoubt Commo Course taught by NCScout in Wyoming. This course was a combination of the RTO Basic, RTO Advanced and SIGINT classes taught by NCScout.
We spent two days per segment, spending the first day split between classroom sessions and field sessions. The second day was for the practical exercise where we applied the skills learned on the first day. I thought this was a good mixture, teaching us enough to be dangerous then going out and practicing it.
After having just finished the Scout course, and feeling pretty big and bad, I thought the information presented was a great force multiplier in the small unit context. During the Scout course I was lucky enough to have some talented gentlemen in our squad who were previous students of the RTO courses and they did a fantastic job organizing our squads Commo during our force on force training. Even if the OPFOR would have possessed SIGINT capabilities they would have had a hard time. The ability to communicate directly with each other helped our newly formed squad greatly and minimized the communication and training gaps amongst us. Now that I’ve attended the courses myself I have an even greater appreciation for the skill set.
As I’ve stated in my review for the Scout course, NCScout is a fantastic teacher and knows a great deal about the subject matter of the class and also many other things. During class we went down a few rabbit holes when time permitted and he shared a lot of information with us that wasn’t always part of the class but was quite relevant to the times. I appreciated these discussions because the conversation was good with the additional input of the other students. They were a great group of guys and I think they enriched the experience greatly for me.
While some may dismiss these classes as strictly for “radio guys”, they are actually full of critical information pertinent to trigger pullers as well. It was great to learn how to properly implement communications into the planning process as learned during the scout course, and since we are all potential leaders it’s important to have a functional understanding of these skills.
A thought that occurred to me to demonstrate this point was the fact that between the Scout course and Commo Course, which comprised 9 days of training total, only one was dedicated to shooting. Only 11% of our training time in other words. I hope that puts the importance of other skills into perspective besides just shooting. That’s not to say having a mastery of your rifle isn’t important, it’s just that there is more to learn besides that.
While that may seem intimidating to some getting started, attending these courses can quickly get you pointed in the right direction and help you avoid a lot of the BS out there. I would actually consider this training essential and will be highly suspect of anyone’s skill set who hasn’t been, short of a professional background. I am currently unaware of anyone teaching these skills outside the military and therefore the value for your training dollar is fantastic. I fully plan on attending these classes again when I can.