Preparing for exercise Cold Reponse 2014

10 12 2013

A soldier guards the area around a CV9030, while it is having maintenance in field during winter exercise Cold Response 2012 (Photo: Torbjørn Kjosvold / Forsvarets mediesenter)

The international military Exercise Cold Response 2014 will probably be the largest ever, with 16.000 soldiers from 16 countries.

Recently 230 officers from all the participating countries gathered in Harstad, North Norway to plan next year’s exercise.  Cold Response is held biannually in North Norway and is one of the most important events for NATO to train in Arctic conditions.

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Video: ‘Unbreakable’ TV Show Episode 2 at Norwegian School of Winter Warfare

8 12 2013

Unbreakable is a reality television series presented by Explorer Benedict Allen on UK’s Channel 5, where eight volunteers undergo an onslaught of physical and mental pressure in a bid to be declared unbreakable.

From the Norwegian arctic to the Sahara Desert, the volunteers learn to survive in the world’s harshest environments and endure some of the toughest military training around.

In this episode shot at the Norwegian School of Winter Warfare in Norway. They are placed in the vicinity of a TNT explosion and forced to jump into an ice hole while still wearing their skis. They were required to dig a snow hole and sleep in it (something Norwegian school children routinely do at winter camp, though they get to use a sleeping bag).

Norway to Establish Northern Rapid Reaction Force

28 11 2013

The Norwegian Army has announced it will establish a professional rapid reaction force in northern Norway.

The basics of the new HRS north:

Rapid Response Force for developing Norwegian capabilities after Afghanistan

700 soldiers based in Setermoen in Troms county;

About half the 700 will be grenadiers: enlisted soldiers with leadership training & the rest are officers.

The core will be expanded from the current armored battalion, one cavalry consisting of mechanized infantry with CV90’s, Leopard 2’s, sharpshooters, and support.

Read more: Barents Observer – Norway Today – Dagbladet

The Futuristic Design of Norway’s Skjold-class Fast Patrol Boats

31 10 2012

This photo from DCNS of France show’s one of the Norwegian Navy’s six Skjold-class Fast Patrol Boats. DCNS has won a four-year contract to support the boats. The last vessel will be delivered in 2013.

Editor’s note:

Wouldn’t it be nice to see these flying a Canadian flag and patrolling our Arctic waters in the spring, summer and fall?

Battle Humidity to Avoid Cold Feet

23 10 2012

By Major Per Kristian Dahl, Centre of Excellence for Cold Weather Operations (Norway)

Throughout the centuries battles and wars have been lost because of bad weather conditions. One of the most famous ones is Napoleon’s campaign against Russia in 1812. You have most certainly heard stories from World War I and the problem the soldiers faced in the trenches getting immersion foot (trench foot). This is for many a distant problem ignorant to the fact that this also was a problem for soldiers during the Falklands War and still is especially for units operating in littoral waters. This short introduction in history points out some lessons to be learned. First of all; cold weather is more than low temperatures and includes humidity as well.Secondly; the weather conditions will recur and affect future operations as well.

Cold feet feels devastating for many soldiers since it creates more concern, reduces the motivation and combat readiness more than anything else. I have taught some lessons throughout the years, which I will share with you in this article. I will bring you through a short introduction to the multilayer system. Then the article will focus on three faces; preparations before operations, routines during activity and routines in bivouac.

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New Link: The Norwegian School of Winter Warfare (NSWW)

12 10 2012

The Norwegian School of Winter Warfare (NSWW) is an international competency centre specialising in cold weather operations.

Our instructors are highly skilled and among the best the Norwegian Army can offer. Our students will achieve a high level of competence after course completion.

The school’s main task is to educate Norwegian and international officers of all branches in cold weather operations and survival.

NSWW supports exercises in Norway with avalanche warning teams and are able to support units training in Norway with winter instructors

The Norwegian School of Winter Warfare is responsible for survival training in the Norwegian Army. We conduct full SERE (Survival – Evasion – Resistance – Extraction) instructor courses for both national and international students.

NSWW is one of the key elements of the NATO Centre of Excellence – Cold Weather Operations (COE-CWO).

Our location in Terningmoen Camp, in the central parts of eastern Norway, gives us access to excellent training conditions. Thee large military exercise areas, with few restrictions, are available within a one-hour drive.


NATO – Combat in the Cold

15 03 2011

Soldiers from NATO and partner nations take part in a course in Norway to give them the skills to survive and fight in a winter environment. Soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard spend the day patrolling on skis in the Norwegian mountains.

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