Heat 2, Texas
I am late writing this review. After getting back from a six day class, work was and has been super busy!
Background: I attended what is formerly known as Combat Rifle Skills and Combat Team Tactics last year at Brady, Texas. I was amazed at how much we were able to go through, and retain day to day, and then roll right into the next drill without a hitch. So as soon as the Texas 2018 Heat 2 class went up last year I was hitting the “take my money” button as fast as I could!
Leading up to Texas: Heat 2 in 2018 I was (still am) doing a lot of PT, I didn’t want to be the guy sucking wind and not able to keep up. I will admit though, I was still a little nervous before the class date….wondering had I done enough, had I pushed hard enough? Would I remember the drills from last year? Like a lot of guys, with work, family, and a myriad of other responsibilities…getting time to practice is hard. Heat 2 started off with a review of the basic bounding, peeling, and patrol formations that we went over in CTT last year. We were able to roll right into the drills like we hadn’t missed a beat! A true testament to the training that Max provides! We were introduced to a 6 man arrowhead patrol and several other patrol formations, along with move & fire forward bounds, whereas last year we only did a cover fire after our bound and we were set for the next buddy pair to bound forward. Max had a theme for us this year and introduced us to a Rhodesian cover shoot concept, which was very interesting, and really hit home on that one of the hardest things to do is to locate the enemy! We also had a daylight and night time reconnaissance that was a lot of fun! We had to set up an ORP in an area where we could view the OPFOR that was guarding the lodge we were staying at. We sent out satellite patrols to see what other kind of information we could gather on the force and possible hostage situation. Once it turned dark we split up into 3 two man teams and tried to penetrate into the compound area in a clover leaf pattern to see how far we could get in and what other types of info we could gather. It was a great learning experience!
Ambush day was a lot of fun, I don’t know how many iterations we did, but they were all different each time and most everyone got a chance to get experience leading an ambush. The last iteration was interesting as Max pulled out some tricks, with the pop up targets popping up again as a counterattack and our squad taking a casualty. The casualty had to self-treat as best as possible while the squad went to work trying to win the fight. Once the enemy were suppressed, part of the squad was able to get the casualty to an EVAC area while the rest of the squad followed up. I will say this, PT is essential! I can’t imagine how much SUCK it would have been had I not been doing PT! Raid day was very interesting with employing a support by fire team and having them shift fire as we were assaulting through! Somewhere in here we had an evening that Max and my roommate Wheelsee put on a TC3 class that was superb!
The last couple of days were CQB and partly Force on Force. The House of Woe was an eye opener, never having cleared a house before by myself or with a buddy or a team……wow! You need to do it, it will really get you thinking about angles, which as a land surveyor I can understand, but in a house with possible occupants wanting to harm you….it’s a whole different game! You really have to think your way through. Getting to use UTM ammo and the rifle that you train with, I can’t tell you how much that brings it all together! That was a great learning experience, I did die several times, and each time Max was able to go over what we did wrong (usually not enough suppressive fire!!!) and each time we would get a little better! Max has a way of getting you to understand and see what you did wrong and how to fix it that is very admirable! Getting to use the tactics we had learned against live opponents, in my opinion is one of the best learning experiences you can have! It will show you where you are at and what you don’t know yet! Without having to pay the ultimate price…. I also have to say that the group of guys I was with were an excellent group of guys and family men to train with! No egos, no BS, eager to help, eager to learn, it made the experience all the more better. By the way, I’m already signed up for Texas 2019! Get out there, get busy, train, do PT and take a class you won’t regret it!