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The Scout Sniper Platoon with Company B, 1st Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment, 4th Marine Division, Marine Forces Reserve, provide fire support to their company during training exercise Nordic Frost, Jan. 8, 2016, at Ethan Allen Training Center in Jericho, Vt. The snipers provided support in the defensive position by attacking individual targets as they appeared at distances as far away as 1,000 meters.

Photo by Lance Cpl. Alonzo Barnett

Operation Nordic Frost prepares Marines for cold weather operations

15 Jan 2016 | Lance Cpl. Alonzo Barnett 4th Marine Division

Marines with 1st Battalion, 25th Marines, 4th Marine Division, Marine Forces Reserve, conducted exercise Nordic Frost in the mountains of Vermont at Ethan Allen Training Center from Jan. 5-14, 2016. More than 750 Reserve Marines from Maine to Western New York gathered together in the cold environment for their collaborative, annual exercise.

            During the exercise, Marines conducted multiple simulated combat scenarios in below-freezing weather to improve their offensive and  defensive capabilities, execution of combat logistics and mountain warfare.

            “All of our training is focused around being able to survive and fight in the environment that we find ourselves,” said 1st Sgt. Daniel P. Healey with Company A, 1st Bn., 25th Marines.  “In the mountains and cold, we need to be able to execute offense, defense, combat logistics and command and control.”

            Each company took turns at different ranges, to practice essential core competencies.

            “For the conduct of the offense, one of the things we will be doing is a squad-supported attack,” said Healey.  “We are going to have a squad attack while being supported by our own internal assets such as medium machine guns, mortars and scout snipers. The intent is to familiarize Marines with live-fire attacks and using all the tools at their disposal to locate, close with and destroy the enemy.”

            The Marines made the simulated events as realistic as possible, adding movements and live rounds to the training.

            “We are going to have basic riflemen run up the range and meet a squad-sized element and then a platoon-sized element,” explained Pfc. Carl G. Shoup, a machine gunner with 1st Battalion, 25th Marines. “The machine gunners will be posted on top of Machine Gun Hill to provide cover fire and simulate a real operation.”

            The simulated operations honed the Marines’ skills and prepared them for unique environments and situations. 

            The Marines trained hard while enduring freezing cold temperatures to improve their capabilities and their ability to deal with these realistic situations. Their mental toughness and perseverance continue to show the world that 4th Marine Division will be ready at a moment’s notice and will perform to the best of their abilities in any environment.


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