Arctic/Antarctic

Royal Marines Complete Arctic Training With Intensive Combat Missions

45 Commando were tasked with ambushing and pursuing a mock enemy across mountainous terrain during the training.

Royal Marines from 45 Commando have finished their Arctic training, testing out their combat skills in the inhospitable terrain.

Drawing two months of exercises to a close with a week-long simulated "fight-phase", commandos were tasked with ambushing and pursuing a mock enemy across the mountainous region.

It was a chance for those involved to test out their small team tactics, a key part of the Future Commando Force, a modernisation programme which is encouraging personnel to embrace new technology.

Operating across the mountains, the marines gathered intelligence on their "enemy" while using movement and survival techniques key to navigating their surroundings.

New troop commanders were given the freedom and responsibility to come up with and give orders against 45 Commando's recce troop, acting as adversaries. 

Sergeant Taylor, Mountain Leader Class 1, said the training had been a success.

The marines have been taking part in combat training in the extreme cold conditions (Picture: Royal Navy).

"The aim of the week, and the course, is to produce marines who are comfortable with operating in a mountainous and Arctic environment, and we achieved that.

"The fight phase is deliberately arduous, as it successfully instils the discipline and skills required to overcome both the environment and a determined adversary.

"The final week of the course was a significant step-up from the mobility phase (in which commandos refresh skills in moving on snowshoes and skis), the weather became a lot more challenging as well, but the marines relished the opportunity to be tested in this environment, and demonstrate that they can still be lethal."

While the combat training was going on the specialist Shore Reconnaissance Team from 30 Commando Information Exploitation Group were sharpening their skills landing their small raiding crafts on rocky fjords.

Their task was to accurately move in to engage 'enemy' positions as discreetly and quietly as possible and then withdraw from a beach under fierce contact from enemy positions.

45 Commando are now bringing their Arctic training to a close with live-fire training at the ranges, and ski training to increase their mobility across the terrain, before returning to the UK.

In January, specialist Royal Marine commandos completed the first phase of their Arctic deployment in Norway.

Cover image: 45 Commando have completed their training in the Arctic (Picture: Royal Navy).