British Columbia Dragoons Range Day Weathers On
On the weekend of 19 – 21 October 2018 the British Columbia Dragoons (BCD) participated in Exercise BALLISTIC DRAGOON 18 which was the annual range weekend for the BCD. This range practice is part of the Individual Battle Task Standards qualification where the soldiers of the Regiment must qualify on their Personal Weapons Test level 3 (PWT 3) in order to continue on with further weapons training or prepare for deployment. This exercise was originally planned to be a joint exercise at Vokes Range in Chilliwack with 39 CER where they would run the range portion and the BCD would run the CBRN Gas Hut portion. Unfortunately, issues arose with the templating of the Vokes Range and it could no longer be utilized. The Operations Officer and Operations WO took this restriction in stride and moved forward with a plan to move the exercise to Trail, BC to utilize the range there.
On the Friday night, the main body of the soldiers deployed to Trail via bus and by the unit Blue Fleet vehicles and arrived at our bed down location at the Trail Armoury shortly before midnight. Early the next morning, the Regiment deployed out to the Casino Range on the outskirts of Trail where we began to conduct the range setup. We did encounter fog first thing in the morning which limited our visibility to less than 100m but it eventually burned off at around 10:00 hrs when we could get our first round down range. The Range Safety Officer, Capt Jesse La France, and his Range Controlling Officer, Sgt Matt Peet continued to run serials of PWT 3 all afternoon and even conducted a low light shoot for those soldiers interested. The soldiers of the Regiment also has the opportunity to fire the unit’s carbine rifle, the C8, as a familiarization. Upon completion of the range a quick cleanup was done, and then the Regiment headed back to the Armoury in Trail to clean weapons and relax for the evening. The next day the unit returned to Kelowna in preparation for future tasks.
In all, the unit had a total of 53 Soldiers, NCO’s and Officers fire on the range this weekend. Last year the unit had 12 soldiers score 39/49 or better, which is the requirement to be considered “Marksman” on PWT 3. This year there were 18 total. With this qualification they are qualified to receive their crossed rifles with a crown for their DEU’s. Also this year we had a tie for Top Shot. Cpl Young and Cpl Younger both received perfect scores of 49/49 during their serials.
In spite of the weather and the change of location, Ex BALLISTIC DRAGOON was successful and everyone enjoyed the opportunity to go and shoot.
Written by: Maj T. Waaga