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JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska — Approximately 600 U.S. Soldiers and 39 members of the Canadian Brigade Group conducted a winter field training exercise in sub-freezing temperatures at the Donnelly Training Area outside of Fort Greely, Alaska, as a part of Exercise Arctic Eagle 2018.
The winter training was intended to improve arctic skills as well as individual and collective tasks, while simultaneously strengthening our international partnership with Canadian service members.
The arctic skills training portion of the exercise was a three-day long event involving numerous events testing and improving the individuals’ abilities to successfully operate in harsher environments.
Arctic skills are comprised of preventing cold weather and environmental injuries, individuals protecting themselves and fellow service members in extreme cold weather and managing risk in cold region operations. Some examples of the training Soldiers received included how to evacuate a hypothermic casualty, planning a small unit movement over snow-covered terrain and occupying a patrol base in cold regions. They also practiced moving over snow in snowshoes, utilizing an arctic tent, constructing improvised shelters, and performing weapons maintenance in extreme cold weather.
One intent of Exercise Arctic Eagle 2018 is to refine and sustain the Alaska National Guard’s ability to operate in a joint, interagency, and intergovernmental environment, such as the one simulated in the Donnelly Training Area.
Training at DTA is only one of many events composing Arctic Eagle 2018.
The entire exercise consists of approximately 1,100 participants.
The individuals affiliated with the exercise include National Guardsmen from more than 10 different states; the Alaska State Defense Force, Alaskan Command, U.S. active duty and Reserve service members, the Canadian Rangers and Canadian Brigade Group; and federal, state and local agencies.