MARINE CORPS MOUNTAIN WARFARE TRAINING CENTER BRIDGEPORT, Calif. --
The two-week Mountain Exercise training for 2nd Battalion 4th Marine Regiment ended Tuesday, with a 9-kilometer-hike down the mountains of the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center, Bridgeport, Calif.
The unit, stationed out of Marine Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., trained in a segment which focused on basic mountain survival training, including safety, basic mobility, navigation, and cold weather and mountain survival techniques.
“As Marines, we are always training for every environment and ready for anything,” said Cpl. Taylor Dosch, a mountain warfare instructor at the MCMWTC.
The training evolution is designed to prepare Marines for any environment. “This training will make us more flexible,” said 1st Lt. Robert Lee, the executive officer for Headquarters and Service Company. “Operations can change at any moment, and we don’t know where we could be sent, so we are preparing for anything.”
Some Marines have never seen snow before and were given the tools they needed to live in the new environment. “We had Marines who were untrained skiers, and I’ve seen them traverse terrain with full combat load and skis,” Lee said.
For the Marines of 2nd Bn., 4th Marines, the training has been a good learning experience packed with helpful information, said Lance Cpl. Steven Prom, a Marine with Headquarters and Service Co. “If we found ourselves in a survival situation, this training will be very helpful.”
The snow-covered mountains not only serve as an environmental training tool but also an evaluation asset for the senior leadership in the individual companies and battalion as a whole.
“Here we can test the strengths of the Marines,” Lee said. “Cold weather tests discipline. We have been able to see leaders stand out, regardless of rank.”
The battalion is slated to deploy to Afghanistan later this year, and with the mountain training they received at the MWTC, they will be ready for any and all cold weather that awaits them, Dosch said.