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Where Military
Are Made

From the harsh ridgelines in Italy during World War II and the frigid peaks of Korea during the 1950s, to the Hindu Kush in Afghanistan, mountaineering has long been a necessary skill for U.S. service members in battle.

The Defense Department has a few schools that train students on mountaineering, but its main training center is the Army Mountain Warfare School near Jericho, Vermont.

Welcome to the Army Mountain Warfare School

Knots, Pulleys, Climbing

Imagine racing up the side of a snowy mountain to rescue an injured person, then, despite your fatigue, having to figure out the best way to secure that person and bring them back down safely.

Using a minimal amount of rope and other supplies you carried with you, do you tie a bowline or clove hitch to start making a pulley system? And how do you communicate with your fellow rescuers who might be further down the hillside?

At the Army Mountain Warfare School, students learn how to use adverse terrain to their advantage under any weather conditions, day or night. From knot tying to climbing techniques, courses teach some of the even most experienced climbers new ways to overcome obstacles.

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Trainers & Rescuers

To deter conflicts and defeat aggression, service members need to be prepared to operate in mountainous terrain and they learn from among the best in the world.

What makes them so good? Their instructors have years of real-life experience and carry civilian mountaineering certifications. They are constantly honing their skills and exchanging tactics while training with other experts. Instructors are also called upon by partner nations to train foreign special forces units.

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What it Takes to
Train the Best

A chance assignment led Army Staff Sgt. Andrea Okrasinski to combine her passion for teaching with her appreciation for nature by becoming an instructor at the Army Mountain Warfare School.

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Sacred Search
Colony Glacier


Steep Competition
Edelweiss Raid


Journey to
the Top