I remember going through the South Korean ROK Marine Mountain Warfare training center. Those ROK Marines were damn machines during the entire training course. I remember going up into the mountains one day, probably covering a few thousand feet in elevation, and they smoked us. Obviously, this is their backyard and they better be good at it, but damn. We were all in pretty good physical condition and these guys didn’t break a sweat.

Moving on to the ropes course was another interesting training evolution. This consisted of knot tying with regards to combat and survival and then traversing many different types of rope bridges. We all had safety carabiners snapped into the overhead line when going across these bridges. One of the two rope bridges actually crosses a major highway with a steady flow of vehicles and trucks. One of our guys got hung up and lost his footing. Unable to regain his footing to continue across the bridge, one of the Korean ROK Marines quickly went out across the bridge with no safety line snapped in and helped our guy back onto the bridge. They seem to have an increased level of crazy in them. All in all, it was a great training deployment with the ROK Marines.


Petty Officer 3rd Class Cody Goddard covers the rear of the group as Republic of Korea Marines try to use communication equipment before a simulated pre-dawn raid Jan. 22 during Korean Marine Exchange Program 14-3 near the Mountain Warfare Training Camp in Pyeongchang, South Korea. To prepare for the cold weather training, the U.S. Marines went through climatization training which included jumping in a pool of ice water, learning to ski, and surviving with no warming layers. Goddard is a corpsman with 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion, 3rd Marine Division, III Marine Expeditionary Force. The ROK Marines are with the 1st ROK Special Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st ROK Division.

Photo courtesy of DVIDS