146 TROOP TRAINING DIARY – WEEK 24
With only 9 weeks left of recruit training, week 24 presented the Troop with a series of new challenges including; an introduction to the Endurance and Tarzan Assault courses, weapon training on the Light Machine Gun (LMG) and the 12 mile load carry. Monday morning started with a routine 0530 reveille followed by breakfast and cleaning the accommodation. The first activity of the day was a 6 mile booted run in preparation for the 6 mile speed march in week 26. Throughout the rest of the day we had our first LMG lessons where we learnt the basic drills on the weapon system. Tuesday morning we were up again at 0530 before more LMG lessons. These lessons included; loading, unloading, stripping and assembling, cleaning and stoppage drills on the weapon. In addition, we also attended a lecture on the Law of Armed Conflict from the Company Commander. Although Tuesday was not a physically demanding day, there was a great deal of information to take in.
Wednesday morning was spent in the weapon stances completing more LMG training, followed by an introduction to the Tarzan Assault Course. The Tarzan Assault course is physically demanding and is 1 of the 4 Commando Tests to be successfully completed in order to become a Royal Marines Commando. Prior to lunch we had a few more practice sessions on the LMG and a mock Weapon Handling Test (WHT). Later that evening the Training Team showed great dedication to their job by giving extra lessons to their sections on the LMG. Following the normal morning routine the first activity on Thursday was a 3 hour drill lesson. The first 45 minutes were spent being inspected to ensure that our turnout was to the correct standard. The Drill Leaders were very satisfied with the turnout of the Troop. We spent the remainder of the period conducting drill movements and formations that would be required for the Kings Squad Pass Out in January 2013. We spent the afternoon on Woodbury Common carrying out the Endurance course acquaint. We initially did the 2 mile Endurance course as a Troop however the second time around the course was a section race followed by the run back to camp.
Friday was an early rise at 0430 and most of the Troop was feeling a little sore from the Endurance course the previous day. That said we had to focus on the next activity which was completing the 12 mile load carry. This is a criteria test which is a cross country march carrying 69lbs of equipment and your personal rifle. The load carry was very demanding due to the undulating terrain however everyone passed which was very good for the morale of the Troop. The rest of the day was spent doing our WHT on the LMG. This entailed demonstrating our proficiency in handling the LMG thus proving to our Section Corporals that we are at the required standard to safely live fire the LMG next week. Overall there was a feeling of a real sense of achievement across the Troop at the end of the week. The Troop is now really looking forward to conducting amphibious training at RM Poole next week.