I took HEAT 1 (CTT) back in April 2016. I was amazed by how much I remembered from HEAT 1.
Thursday of HEAT 2 was a review of HEAT1. It was good to refresh my understanding of bounding over watch, moving in buddy pairs, and a 5 man group. Move / Fire was added to assault enemy positions. Manikins were added to the positions to paint the picture of the enemy being down which helped students understand what they were doing near the enemy positions. Safety angles were reinforced at all times. I felt safe at all times during the drills. Scott constantly reminded us who was the only one that could RTR while reinforcing the danger areas of each drill and why we were shifting fire or keeping our hands off of our weapons. Max and Scott described the training artificialities so that we would understand the way the drills would be done during a real event.
HEAT 2 having HEAT 1 as a prerequisite and a fitness standard brought students that were professional, prepared, and competent. That kept the drills flowing smoothly and there were only a few weapons malfunctions. Scott shared the tip of carrying a spare bolt carrier group which made a lot of sense to me. Think of it like a spare tire for your vehicle.
Friday introduced us to reconnaissance patrol. God bless the people that do these patrols for a living! Lecture using visual aids followed by rehearsals, then hands on repetitions. I must work on my ghost walk. Right now it is more like elephant walk. It was amazing how loud the Velcro was on my glove that I removed to take pictures of the objective. It also led me to add some repair buckles to my cummerbund of my plate carrier so that it can be removed silently. The recon patrol was conducted just before it turned dark, which allowed us to experience observing the objective during day and night.
Saturday we learned about ambushes through lecture, rehearsals, and hands on. We got repetition through the left stop group, and assault group. Once our performance was “Not Bad” a casualty was introduced to add some chaos to the drill. Thanks for your help JohnnyMac! I learned to not overthink little things like getting over a waist high pile of logs and branches. It helped to ramp up my aggressiveness which was clearly needed after the first repetition. 60 round magazines came in handy.
Sunday was a culmination of everything learned so far that led us into hasty attack and raid drills. Scott again reminded us of the safety angles, shifting fire, and getting our hands off our weapons. The drill was complex with both the support by fire group and the assault group trading places during the drills. It was clear why we need more than four magazines within reach. There were no out of control egos in the class. It was so good to see some of the students from other classes. Socks, thank you for all your help reminding me of tactics. There was good mix of police officers, computer guys, and salesmen. If you want a proving ground for you gear. If you want to prepare for the unknown. Train at MVT.
-Bring a case of water
-layer in a way that allows you to start out cold, you will get hot quick
-lube rifle frequently
-spare bolt carrier group
-binoculars for recon patrol
-tubes/side release buckles for plate carrier removal during observation
-60 round mags to start in the rifle/Surefire 60 or Pmag D60 worked great for ambush