Vive Le Canada

Latest arctic sovereignty patrol mission a success despite bad weather
Date: Monday, April 18 2005
April 17, 2005 - 17:37

Arctic patrol claims success in extreme weather despite no crash exercise


(CP) - Despite not being able to carry out a planned simulation of an Arctic plane crash, the commander of an elite group of Canadian Rangers says his troops proved this week they can operate in some of the most abominable weather the north is capable of dishing out.

"It was some of the worst weather I've seen in my time in the Arctic," said Maj. Stewart Gibson, just back from an exercise on Ellef Ringnes Island, about 150 kilometres south of the magnetic North Pole.

Gibson returned Thursday after leading about 30 Rangers from across the Arctic to an abandoned weather station on the island.

In addition to sovereignty patrols to nearby islands, the group was to conduct a simulation of an airplane crash to increase the Rangers' first-response capability.

But the weather on Ellef Ringnes, which scores 99 out of 100 on Environment Canada's climate severity index, had other plans.

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