CAMP GRAYLING, Mich.-- –
The National All-Domain Warfighting Center (NADWC) recently hosted several military and civilian response units from across the globe in Northern Strike 22-1 (Winter Strike 22). With more than 148,000 acres of land and temperatures dipping below zero, Camp Grayling Joint Maneuver Center, which is part of the NADWC, provided an opportunity for units to refine their critical combat skills. The National Guard Bureau-sponsored exercise that united service members from several U.S. states and partner forces occurred from Jan. 21-30, 2022 at Camp Grayling and the Alpena Combat Readiness Training Center, which together comprise the National All-Domain Warfighting Center.
“Soldiers with the 132nd Forward Support Company (FSC), Wisconsin Army National Guard, conducted sustainment missions during Northern Strike 22-1,” said Army Capt. James Rhodes, the Northern Strike, logistics officer in charge , Michigan Army National Guard. “During this maneuver mission, the FSC team rolled into Camp Grayling receiving equipment from the Michigan Army National Guard’s 107th Engineer Company along with their own equipment from their home stations.”
Part of the Wisconsin Army National Guard’s sustainment plan included utilizing Camp Grayling Joint Maneuver Training Center’s 147,500 square foot Maneuver and Training Equipment Site (MATES). The storage space, training opportunities, and expertise of the Michigan National Guard’s MATES staff offers unique options for units from other states to house their equipment in preparation for training.
“When the 132nd arrived, their operational readiness rate fell below 90%, but the help of MATES and surrounding FMS (Field Maintenance Shops), they raised their operational readiness rate to 95.67%,” said Army Staff Sgt. Joshua Pusel, maintenance control noncommissioned officer in charge, Foxtrot Company, 132nd Brigade Support Battalion, (BSB) Wisconsin Army National Guard.
Wisconsin Soldiers had the opportunity to leverage Michigan’s subject matter experts at MATES to provide maintenance training.
“Camp Grayling is a preferred training location for armor and field artillery units due to pooled equipment at MATES,” said Pusel. “We provided additional training on the M777 Howitzer while completing 48 work orders and 400 man-hours.”
Providing services such as meals during the cold weather training exercise helps units test their abilities to rapidly deploy and provide timely support.
“During Winter Strike, the 132nd Brigade Support Battalion prepared more than 3,200 meals to participating units, which was vital to improve resiliency and readiness, optimize service member performance, and ensure troops are fit to fight,” said Army Army Capt. Matthew Cornette, Foxtrot Company, 132nd BSB, commanding officer, Wisconsin Army National Guard.
Winter Strike also provided commanders an opportunity to enhance their logistics package (LOGPAC) skills with the distribution of resources. Leaders can utilize both unit distribution management skills and supply point techniques when supplying a force at a logistics release point.
“Commanders conducted eight LOGPAC operations in a unit defense posture while allowing leadership to maintain momentum and shorten the lines of communication for resupply,” said Cornette.
Forward Support Company Soldiers with the 132nd provided direct support to 1st Battalion, 120th Field Artillery Regiment, Wisconsin Army National Guard, which helped meet the battalion’s requirements.
The 132nd provided more than 7,200 gallons of fuel that was consumed by vehicles, generators, and heating devices,” said Cornette. “We also delivered 400 rounds of 155 mm artillery pieces, and resupplied 1000s of 5.56 and 7.62 ammunition, while maintaining a defensive operation.”
During 2022, the NADWC will provide units with several opportunities to sharpen their skills with training and readiness exercises. The NADWC is scheduled to support a wide range of events including Northern Strike 22, Cyber Shield, Agile Rage, and austere aircraft landings that support the Air Force’s Agile Combat Employment concept.