Ex Maple Resolve 2013
By: Capt Connor Readman
On 15 May 13, Recce Squadron once again returned to the plains of Wainwright for yet another exercise. Ex MAPLE RESOLVE was a 1 CMBG exercise conducted by the Canadian Manoeuvre Training Centre (CMTC) as part of the readiness training for TF 1-13 (TF GLADIUS). What’s the best way to prepare a highly trained group of soldiers to be ready for overseas deployment? Put them against another group of equally matched warriors. An RCD Battle Group fulfilled the role of our enemy, and they certainly tested us to our limits. Tanks, artillery, air power and flying bridges took to the battlefield for a lengthy three weeks.
Recce Squadron took to its regular routine of screening the advance and establishing observation posts (OPs). Once we had a chance to break ahead of the battlegroup as it established a bridgehead across the Battle River, 1st Troop’s WO Ben Holmes and Sgt Ryan Vigar commenced to win the war single-handedly by annihilating a majority of the enemy Recce screen to the point that the Brigade Commander, Col Dave Anderson, told the squadron to rein it in as everyone else was missing out. Once we held the line and established our OP’s, 2nd Troop’s WO Laki Christopoulos led a dismounted patrol where an enemy soldier had the misfortune of wandering too close. They saw an opportunity and in quick order, captured the astray soldier, or in Tpr Alex Brown’s words: “We have a hostage!” It’s a “person of interest” Brown… a “person of interest.”
The exercise continued into a relative pattern of Groundhog Day for over a week as the enemy would probe into our screen line forcing us to reposition or bolster our concealment and protection. Excitement finally came when we resumed the advance, only to be stonewalled with a chemical attack, imposing on us the necessity to don our gas masks. This only puzzled SSM MWO Tom Falls as to how he could consume his coffee with the mask on.
Once the gas cleared up the fight continued on and the exercise culminated in a final attack with the infamous flying bridge; a Medium Girder Bridge (MGB) built almost to completion by 1 CER which was flown by Chinook and used for over bridging which allowed the Leopard 2’s to cross the river in quick order. The war was done, End Ex was called, and after a couple days of brisk remediation and clean-up we left Wainwright for some well deserved R&R after spending nearly 3 months on exercise in the new year.