C Sqn Ex DESERT RAM 11
By Capt Evan Wiome
Ex DESERT RAM 11 was a truly unique opportunity for the members of C Squadron to brush up on their basic soldier skills. In preparation for deployment to Afghanistan on Op ATTENTION, C Squadron left its tanks behind and joined 3 PPCLI to learn how to work as dismounted soldiers. The skills employed by dismounted infantry are very different from those of tankers (a C8 does not have a laser range finder or a stability system), so there was a steep learning curve. Training included pairs and group live fire training, dry and live convoy training using light vehicles and all arms call for fire training with live mortars. Perhaps the most interesting training occurred when the Sqn had a chance to fire on the 3 PPCLI sniper range with each soldier being individually coached by a trained sniper. In addition to learning new skill sets, there was the weather to contend with. The spring thaw created a large amount of water in the bivouac to overcome. Countless hours of time were spent digging a network of trenches in an effort to channel the seemingly endless flow of water away from our tents. Making the best of the situation, the activity was turned into a morale building activity to improve water flow and race “boats” on the torrent of runoff. Despite the numerous challenges that confronted them, the members C Squadron of lived up to the Regimental motto of “Perseverance”, successfully completing their required training objectives while maintaining high morale.