Two network communication protocols, one for routing and one for mobility management, are presented that are particularly suited for use with ad-hoc networks. The routing protocol is a proactive-reactive hybrid routing protocol that limits the scope of the proactive procedure to the node's local neighborhood. Routing zones are defined for each node that include nodes whose distance from the subject node in hops is at most some predefined number, referred to as the zone radius. Each node is required to know the topology of the network within its routing zone only. The reactive procedure is limited during route discovery to queries of only those nodes located on the periphery of routing zones. In this manner, the queries hop across nodes in distances of zone radius, thus limiting the scope of the reactive procedure. The zone radius is preferably adjustable to accommodate different and differing network topologies and network operational conditions in the most efficient manner. The mobility management protocol relies on some network nodes assuming the mobility management function. In this scheme, each network node is “associated” with one or more mobility management nodes. The mobility management nodes form a virtual network which is embedded within the actual ad-hoc network. Each mobility management node knows the location of all nodes within its zone, and communicates this information to any other mobility management node that requests it.