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Winter Survival 2024 Draws Nearer

The harsh environment of Hruby Jesenik Mountains, usually buried under snow in the months of January and February will again, after the break caused by covid pandemics, welcome three-member military teams to show their ability of tackling the challenging disciplines designed to check both their physical and mental strength and stamina. These qualities are absolutely indispensable if you want to go through the entire Winter Survival competition whose 27th edition is under preparation of the University of Defence under the auspices of the Chief of General Staff and will take place on 28th January to 2nd February 2024.

The competition whose goal is checking for the skills necessary for soldiers in winter conditions is unique globally. Therefore, nobody without detailed knowledge of surviving, military climbing or map work cannot participate in it. What exactly will be included the competitors learn from the guide and that is available only few days before start.

The competition time framework may generally divide into two stages. The first one lasts three days in fact represents movements through unknown terrain (daily up to 30 km) using only a map and baseplate compass. The teams spend two nights outdoor without tents. During the movements they complete daily three disciplines with certain tasks to get 0 – 100 points. The second and final stage lasts one day and takes place in Ovcarna pod Pradedem vicinity in the form of two-round relay race that gives the performance more sport spirit when compared to the first stage.

Every edition of Winter Survival attracts military teams from abroad. This time, the traditional participating countries, such as Austria, Slovakia or Poland, will be completed with new ones: Lithuania or France. What will be the final composition of the roaster will be known in January after the final entry forms arrive.

As long as Czech teams concerned, the start list cannot miss the representatives for the University of Defence. They will resume the participation in previous years. Some of the predecessors work today for University’s Physical Training and Sports Centre and their experience from the competition helps making the event as much interesting as possible for the teams as well as for public followers. These may for the first time follow the Instagram account  WinterSurvival_unob for the competition news.

Author: Viktor Sliva, archive photo: The Dung Nguyen