The Ontario Regiment practices Winter Warfare during Exercise ARCTIC LYNX

Article / February 2, 2016 / Project number: c-ar-ex-arctic-lynx

When one hears “armoured reconnaissance” one often thinks of soldiers mounted in vehicles moving across the countryside. Yet, for The Ontario Regiment, operations on foot can be just as important. Lieutenant-Colonel Michael Rostek, Commanding Officer of The Ontario Regiment explains that “as an armoured reconnaissance regiment we are as well versed in [dismounted] close reconnaissance as we are about our vehicle platforms. Armoured reconnaissance is not vehicle-bound. We are often out of our vehicles as much as we are in them."

Close reconnaissance was indeed the order of the day for the approximately 50 members of The Ontario Regiment from Oshawa and across the Durham Region who took part in Exercise ARCTIC LYNX at 4th Canadian Division Training Centre Meaford from January 22 to 24, 2016. This exercise gave soldiers the opportunity practice warfare and soldier skills in harsh winter conditions. The scenario was based on a force on force concept. One force scouted, planned their assault, and conducted an attack on a separate, independent element.  “We live in a country with winter. We need to know how to live and fight in it,” says Corporal Nathan Blake when asked why this type of training is important.

Corporal Blake who, as a civilian, works as a firefighter, is also an example of The Ontario Regiment’s close ties with the communities of Durham region. "Our soldiers are part of communities in the region and are proud of our regiment's 150 years of tradition. Other regiments are close with their regions, but we seem to be particularly close with ours," says Lieutenant-Colonel Rostek. The mayor of Oshawa, for example, congratulates each soldier of the regiment who returns home from overseas. In turn, many members of the regiment who receive support from Durham region while in uniform also support their communities out of uniform as teachers and emergency services personnel.

By Captain Scott Atchison, 33 Canadian Brigade Group Public Affairs Officer

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