2009 EPISODE 9 of 12: TRI-TOWER
Ranger teams will test their basic climbing skills, mountaineering, overcoming obstacles and aircraft egress
Fort Benning, Georgia, Todd Field, the Best Ranger Competition, day two.
Next up, the Tri-Tower challenge.
The remaining Ranger teams will test their basic climbing skills, mountaineering, overcoming obstacles and aircraft egress.
SFC James S. Mastrodomenico: "They need to climb all three towers. It's a sixty-foot rock climb into a repel, then they'll move to our Caving Ladder, which is twenty feet, then they'll go ahead and fast rope. Then they'll come over to our third tower, which is a rope climb with a fast rope. Fastest time takes all."
All soldiers are taught in Ranger School the basic techniques for each one of these towers, but as the fatigue sets in, these competitors rely on the Ranger ethos, fight on to the Ranger objective at all cost.
SFC James S. Mastrodomenico: "Guys who aren't as experienced with climbing, what they do is using their upper-body strength to go ahead and climb the sixty-foot wall as opposed to small steps with small hands, then establishing feet. Then they go over to the Caving Ladder and again, as opposed to using the heel hook and using a foot in the Caving Ladder, they try to monkey their way up. Then they pump themselves out and by the time they get over the rope they just got nothing left."
On tower one, Team 26, Captains Aguilar and Garberson. The teams must stay together at all times over the three obstacles but cannot be on the obstacle at the same time together. As Captain Aguilar reaches the top, he has to transition to the repel line. Captain Garberson has to wait at the bottom of the climbing wall; he can't start until his Ranger buddy hits the repel mat.
Now with Captain Aguilar down, Garberson can start his climb. Now his Ranger buddy has to wait until he clears the climbing wall, transitions to the repel line and down before they can move on to the second tower.
Rangers are faced with many obstacles on the battlefield, and they're prepared to overcome any situation. At the second tower, the Ranger team will use a completely different set of skills. First they will climb a twenty-foot Caving Ladder, a common tool they would use in an assault on a second story building. After clearing the top, they will fast rope down the other side, normally used in a helicopter assault.
From there they need to run the 80 yards to the third and final tower for this lane. The mid-day temperature is over 90 degrees and the humidity is in the 80s. The Ranger two-man team is pushing on, to the third objective. They will climb a knotted rope up the first side and then another FRIES air-assault descent to get down. This is where they need to dig deep. Seconds are points, and at the end of the second day, every point will count.
Next time on BRC 2009. The Helocast. Using another Ranger assault skill, the teams will air assault into the water and swim ashore silently.
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