Death to the Arborists: Strathconas Destroy Their Wooded Foes

By Lt Cam “Where did I leave those Course Reports?” Ross.

 

During the first week of September the students of the Leopard 2 Gunnery courses, the TOC course and the crews of B Squadron faced off against their timeless and most hated enemy on the range – rectangular wooden targets. The gunnery courses began with students from all modules conducting static shoots during the day and at night, destroying those dastardly wooden rectangles at range before pushing the carnage and wood chips up close and personal during the firing on the move exercises. Although there were some that were nervous at the prospect of firing service HEAT rounds for the first time, by the time these new turret crews mounted their tanks on the night of the 1st of September, the confidence of each new gunner, loader and crew commander had grown noticeably.  Each turret crew displayed the culmination of their skills by conducting their final night moving shoots with fantastic speed and violence.


Thanks to the dedicated effort of the instructors, the Leopard and 25mm gunnery courses successfully bred new generation of loaders, gunners and crew commanders.  These former students proved that they were ready to join the turret crews of their respective Squadrons and fight tonight if called upon.


Following the courses, the Regiment’s Worthington Cup Team, under the watchful and pre-workout crazed eyes of Lt TJ “Fail me and you’re dead!” Casey and Sgt Ryan “Harder than Christmas candy” Vigar attempted to set a record for how fast they can blast 120mm rounds down range as they pushed the team to the limits of human gunnery skill.  If they didn’t beat the rounds-per-minute record, they surely got close; no one quite remembered them being there any longer than 15 minutes after they arrived, but a significant amount of ammo was missing and a few fires were raging down range.


Following the Worthington Cup Team shoots, the crew of B Squadron got their opportunity to refresh their skills and break in some new crews.  There are few activites more fun in this world than blowing things up and it showed on the faces of the soldiers of B Squadron as they thoroughly dismantled in 18 hours a range that took Sgt Kyle “I’ll swear on the radio all I want” Chuback the better part of a week to set up.  Though, there was some overzealous gunnery.  Particularly, by MCpl Cam “What do you mean ‘not observed?’” Davidson when he effectively jumpstarted Canada’s space program by successfully launching a 120mm service HEAT round into orbit.  Many staff officers at NORAD and the CAF Space Cadre were jealous and defeated by interstellar accomplishments of MCpl Cam “The artillery man” Davidson’s crew.  In all, I think the piles of wooden splinters and grass fires are a good indication of the gun camp’s success.