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  • Writer's pictureCole Shope

Phase One: Recommended Items

Updated: Mar 19, 2023

At Phase One, you are either issued all the items you will need or they will be included on the packing list. This list is a collection of items that are either not listed on the packing list, not issued to you, or general items I wish I had when going through Phase One.


During State OCS - Phase One, you will spend 2 weeks getting acclimated to the Army's most basic way of life. You will be provided a packing list prior to attending. Along with the packing list, you can also make your experience "better" by coming prepared with the following items.


Required Knowledge

At Phase One you will be spot tested on the "required knowledge", which is information provided to you in the form of a "Blue Book" on the first day of training. I have included this required knowledge, which is generally important knowledge you should know for the entirety of OCS, in a short ebook available for free on Amazon. Download here.


Red Lens Head Lamp

Most important "luxury" item for Phase One. Your night Land Navigation test will start at 0400 and finish around 0900. The first few points will be found in the dark. You are only approved to use a red lens while in the field. This is the lamp I used. Amazon Link


Extra-Fine Map Markers

Needed for Phase One - The smaller your point on the map, the more accurate your plotting is. An extra fine, permanent tip, along with the Land Navigation Protractor, helps limit discrepancies between points when plotting and keep your points on the map in the rain. These items will give you the best chance of passing when used together. Amazon Link


"No Lip" Protractor

Land Navigation with the Army issued equipment is very difficult. No wonder more candidates fail land navigation than any other event at Phase One. This protractor has less of a "lip", enabling you to be deadly accurate with your points. Amazon Link


Waterproof Notebook

You will constantly be writing down points for land navigation. On the exam, you will only be given the points once. Don't let the rain erase your points and a shot at a first time go. Amazon Link


Anti-Chafing Compressions

You will do a lot of walking and rucking. Don't let friction hold you back. Remember, black is the preferred color. Amazon Link


Ranger Beads

Essential to counting your pace during land navigation. You are issued one set, however if you lose them it does not hurt to have a backup. Amazon Link


Alcohol Wipes

You must use permanent marker to plot your points so the rain and sweat does not erase them. Therefore you need these alcohol wipes to erase your map between plotting segments. Small containers on hand sanitizer work too. Amazon Link


Comfortable Rucking Boots

Good, comfortable boots are important for OCS due to the amount of walking and rucking you will do. You will be required to bring two pairs of boots to all 3 phases of OCS. Here is my choice of boot. Amazon Link


OCS Guide

AKA Bluebook - Here is the electronic version of the one I used. FYI some pages are upside down!



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