US, Canada Conduct Tactical Arctic Insertion With Hercules Aircraft

US and Canadian soldiers participated in a tactical Arctic insertion exercise east of Little Cornwallis Island in Nunavut, Canada.

During the drill, 37 military personnel disembarked on Arctic Ocean ice from an LC-130 Hercules ski-equipped aircraft.

Airmen from the 109th Airlift Wing were tasked with grooming a ski landing area for the aircraft, while other US soldiers and Canadian Rangers secured the location.

After landing, participants set a security perimeter around 100 meters (328 feet) from the landing zone.

Dressed in white camouflage, the soldiers quickly established their security positions.

They were provided with individual weapons, machine guns, and other equipment to survive in the Arctic for three days.

“We’ve been flying missions in Greenland and Antarctica for over 30 years, and this is the first time we’ve ever conducted a tactical insertion with Canadian reserve soldiers,” 109th Airlift Wing officer-in-charge Lt. Col. Matthew Sala said. “We hope to expand our capacity and have more training missions like we had here.”

Arctic exercise
US Army and Canadian soldiers secure their location during an Arctic exercise. Photo: Capt. Mikel Arcovitch/US Army

Showcasing Agile Combat Deployment

According to Sala, the drill demonstrated the capability of the Hercules aircraft to infill and exfil tactical forces in the highly-challenging Arctic region.

It also enabled the countries to demonstrate agile combat deployment in cold-weather while learning from fellow airmen.

US Army Maj. Matt Hefner also admitted that executing the drills was a challenge, but the cooperation between American and Canadian soldiers had made it “an awesome experience.”

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