National Guard hosting 37th annual Golden Coyote training exercise
You may have noticed extra military vehicles on the road in the Black Hills. There's a reason - the South Dakota National Guard is hosting its 37th annual Golden Coyote training exercise in the Black Hills now until the end of next week.
BLACK HILLS, S.D. — This year’s Golden Coyote exercise is giving over 2,000 service members a chance to experience a realistic training environment.
Soldiers can get out into the field and put their skills to the test – helping them prepare to tackle overseas missions and homeland defense.
1st Sergeant Nathan Juelfs with Headquarters Company 109th Engineer Battalion, says, “Putting ourselves in different situations, different places that you wouldn’t normally be or that you could be and this is just another great opportunity of not knowing what the terrain is, where you are going, even though it’s our backyard, this is something that we don’t do on an regular basis.”
35 military units from the National Guard, Army Reserve, and Navy Reserve are participating in the exercise.
They come from all across the country – including nine states and one U.S. territory.
Jeulfs says, “There’s units from all over the world the country, from all over the world, unfortunately with COVID this year, we don’t have as many international partners as we have in the past, and it also gives South Dakota soldiers a great opportunity to train right here in our own backyard in a great training opportunity her in West Camp Rapid and throughout the Black Hills.”
Military operations are conducted throughout the region, including humanitarian and engineering projects.
“We have great cooperation’s with the Forest Service and it’s open for what we want to do. It provides us engineering opportunities in the hills to build roads, put in culverts, we have the timber haul mission, hauling out slash piles from the Forest Service and distributing that lumber to the Native American Reservations,” says Juelfs.
Juelfs adds there is virtual training as well.