Joint Task Force Carson
commanders spoke to local Colorado leaders about training and
environmental stewardship at Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site, during
military exercise Iron Horse Focus, Sept. 22-23, 2014.
Iron Horse Focus, the 4th Infantry Division staff deployed to PCMS
and exercised mission command of the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat
Team's simulation training.
Image courtesy of U.S. Army
The physical distance between PCMS and Fort
Carson provided a realistic training experience for the division and
Commanding General Maj. Gen. Paul J. LaCamera, 4th
Infantry Division and Joint Task Force Carson, talked about the
necessity of PCMS to Fort Carson and maintaining the training
readiness of the force.
“Our challenge is that we have to
prepare our Soldiers, Airmen and others for the rigors of combat,
and Pinon Canyon is integral to that,” LaCamera said.
Commanding General for Support Col. (P) Michael T. Tarsa, 4th Inf.
Div. and Joint Task Force Carson, discussed the capabilities of the
division and its various assets.
“The 4th Inf. Div. is the
most balanced division in the Army,” Tarsa said. “It has a heavy
brigade, a Stryker brigade, a light brigade and an aviation brigade.
There is no more capable division in the Army. The Army is calling
on that capability and will continue to do so.
poses increasingly complex problems, and your 4th Inf. Div. is a
part of the solution,” Tarsa said.
environmental conservation and rehabilitation efforts to maintain
the land and cultural resources for generations to come was also
discussed with local leaders.
“We have visual markers called
Seibert stakes for the troops on the ground and digital reference
points that are plotted on the different digital maps that
commanders can use,” said Dan Benford, Directorate of Plans,
Training, Mobilization and Security director. “Every person who
could potentially be on Pinon Canyon, from Soldiers to the
contractors, has to watch a video on the cultural conservation
efforts and how they can, through their actions, prevent damage to
these cultural sites. Furthermore, there is a reporting system where
Soldiers who may have discovered a previously unknown and
unprotected cultural site can inform their leaders. Then the Army
can protect that resource for future generations.”
stakes are an Army wide standardized marker that show where Soldiers
cannot operate. Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site has 13,000 Seibert stakes
in the ground protecting 270 total sites. In addition, the PCMS uses
gates, fencing and boulders to protect cultural areas.
Protecting cultural resources is only one part of the conservation
effort at PCMS; $1.3 million was spent on rehabilitation efforts
last year and $1.46 million has been awarded next year for land
Commanding General Maj. Gen. Paul J. LaCamera, 4th Infantry
Division and Joint Task Force Carson, thanks Mayor Joe Reorda,
Trinidad, Colo., for visiting the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site, Sept.
22, 2014. The leaders discussed Fort Carson's training at PCMS and
ongoing environmental conservation and rehabilitation efforts. (U.S.
Army photo by Sgt. Eric Glassey, 4th Infantry Division PAO)
“Even when we're deployed, the environment and working
with the local government is a reality, so why not do it
better here than overseas,” LaCamera said. “If we're going
to protect other countries, let's start at home.”
vast majority of the land is a wide-open range with space
for Fort Carson's brigade combat teams to properly exercise
their full mission capabilities.
“There is no peace
dividend at Fort Carson,” LaCamera said. “As we pull people
out of Afghanistan, people think there is going to be this
big slow down. The fact of the matter is we're not slowing
El Paso County Commissioner Peggy Littleton,
commented on the importance of PCMS.
“I see (PCMS) as
a very valuable asset, not only for Fort Carson and our
community in Colorado, but to our entire nation for our
national defense,” said Littleton.
By U.S. Army Sgt. Eric Glassey
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