We've noticed this is not your region.
Redirect me to my region
What do you want to learn today?


If there is one sure way to end up in a survival situation, it’s getting lost in the wilderness. This course is designed to give you a working knowledge of map, compass and GPS.

Upon completion of this training you will have the confidence and skills to venture into the wilderness whether for work or play. 
Main teaching points include (but not limited to): 

Map care and maintenance 
Compass features 
Bearings: shooting and taking 
Plotting your position 
Measuring distance both on the map and on the ground 
Navigating by sun and stars 
Maintaining a straight line while navigating terrain features 
Triangulation or re-section 
Certificates provided for all training.

Our instructors have national/international survival training expertise in various habitats and environmental conditions. Each of our staff members possesses a minimum of 20 years serving Canada, in various positions as members of the Canadian Forces. These professionals have unique skills in the outdoors and a desire to pass on their knowledge to you. 

Check out our instructor biographies and compare our experience levels with other survival training companies and ask yourself: who better to teach survival than ICSOS?


Land Navigation (2-days)


Day one: 
Map & Compass 

Performance Objective: To imprint a solid working knowledge of map and compass.

Teaching Points: Map care, importance of a map, map information, declination, plotting positions, taking and plotting a bearing on a map, MGRS (4,6,8, figure grid reference), measuring distance on the map, compass features, setting declination, Shooting and taking bearings with a compass, measuring distance on the ground, outdoor navigational exercise and confirmation, maintaining a straight line, while navigation terrain features. 

Day two:
GPS & Navigation Exercise

Performance Objective: To instill effective and efficient use of the GPS, and practical use of knowledge.
Teaching Points: GPS features, setting up the GPS, navigating thru your GPS pages, marking waypoints, plotting a route, efficient use of the GPS, pros and cons of GPS use. Full navigation exercise; taking grid references, plotting points, active map use, taking barring, counting paces, finding caches.



Biography - Dave MacDonald  
President and Lead Instructor at ICSOS

Personal History:

  • Born  in southern Ontario
  • Childhood spent in the outdoors hunting, fishing and exploring the Bay of  Quinte
  • Member of the Army Cadets from the ages of 12 through 18
  • Member of Toronto Scottish Military Regiment at the age of 19
  • Currently residing in Lac Du Bonnet, Manitoba
  • Father of  two boys 


Personal Hobbies:

  • Hunting (archery, black powder and rifle) and fishing
  • Back country canoeing and camping
  • Hiking and mountain biking
  • Dog sledding
  • Scuba diving
  • K-9 Search and Rescue training for tracking, searching and urban disaster response


Professional History:

  • Became a full member of the Canadian Military as a Weapons Technician, land, at the age of 20
  • Served in Quebec City with the military for 6 years
  • Served in Nicosia Cyprus as a United Nations Peacekeeper for 6 months
  • Changed trades within the Canadian Military from a Weapons Technician to a Search and Rescue Technician (SARTech) in 1993
  • In 1993, served as a SARTech in Trenton, Ontario for 6 years with 424 Squadron (transport and rescue) 
  • In 1999, served as a SARTech in Winnipeg, Manitoba for 6 years with 435 Squadron (transport, air to air refueling, and rescue) 
  • In 2005, began instructing at the Canadian Forces School of Survival and Aero medical Training (CFSSAT) as a Survival Evasion Resistance and Escape (SERE) instructor
  • Retired from military 2010, after 25yrs of service.

Professional Instruction Experience:

  • 3 years instructing with ICSOS Inc.
  • 5 1/2 years basic and advanced survival instructor at CFSSAT
  • Guest instructor at NATO winter survival course in Spatin, Norway, 2006 and 2009
  • Guest survival  instructor for SAR Tech pre-selection course in Jarvis Lake, Alberta
  • Instructor for NATO aircrew winter survival course in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan
  • Guest speaker for Manitoba Hydro’s safety conference spring 2009  
  • Numerous mobile teaching teams (MTT’s) for air crew pre-deployment briefings prior to going over seas  


Professional Certifications:

  • Military Search and Rescue Technician;               
  • Spill Response Management; 
  • Small Craft Vessel Operator; 
  • Ground Search Manager;
  • HPMA(Human Performance in Military Aviation) program coordinator;
  • ACUC Open Water Diver;  
  • NAUI  Advance and Recue Diver;
  • Bronze Medal, Bronze Cross, and National Lifeguard;
  • Wilderness first aid;
  • CPR level C;
  • A.E.D.;
  • Oxygen theory; 
  • Manitoba Hunting Guide
  • Certified Master Dog Trainer. 


Professional Courses, Skills and Errata:

  • High and low  angle rope rescue;
  • Search and Rescue diver;
  • Parachutist (static line and freefall);
  • Jump Master (static line and freefall);
  • Survival Instructor;
  • Escape and Evasion Instructor;
  • Environmental Officer;
  • Helicopter underwater egress;;
  • Junior leaders course;
  • Arctic survival;
  • Advanced SERE;
  • Aero medical training; 
  • Sea survival;
  • Land survival;
  • Ships diver;
  • Winter warfare crse;
  • Fixed wing multi engine experience;        
  • Rotary wing experience;
  • CASARA spotter trng; 
  • Rigging for rescue crse;
  • Mountain and avalanche training and experience;
  • Power point level 1 & 2 crse;
  • Building a risk -smart  organization crse;
  • Defusing hostility crse;
  • Leading diversity crse;
  • Customer service crse;
  • Managing projects for results crse;
  • Instructional techniques crse;
  • 17 years ER,OR,Cor0ner, & ambulance experience in ON, AB ,BC, & MB; 
  • Working on certificate in Adult and Continuing Education with the U of M. 


Be the first to write a review about this course.
Write a Review
Mission Statement 

Through education and training, we seek to prevent undue suffering and loss of life when faced with unforeseen wilderness accidents and to reduce the burden on our Search and Rescue resources.

Courses and Services:

The main focus of ICSOS is to provide affordable, current, relevant, and standardized survival training. Our survival training is based on current Canadian Air force doctrine. We teach passive survival techniques that will provide you with the most benefits for the least amount of calories burned. 

Our survival training is a graduated process in that, you must progress through the different levels in order to become proficient in the wilderness. Although our main focus is wilderness survival, we also offer consulting, back country guiding, guest speakers and mobile teaching teams.

Corporate: Courses can be modified to meet your specific training needs and schedule. 

Safety is our number one concern. First aid training is always recommended with the exception of Advanced Wilderness survival, where it is a prerequsite. Through education, progressive training, frequent weather checks, safety briefings, standard operating procedures and emergency plans, we will help keep you as safe as possible while you learn. ...

International Canadian School of Survival
PO Box 1106, Lac du Bonnet, Manitoba , Canada R0E 1A0
Sending Message
Please wait...
× × Speedycourse.com uses cookies to deliver our services. By continuing to use the site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies, Privacy Policy, and our Terms & Conditions.