A Weekend Adventure With The Marauders

I can’t move.

It hurts to bend over, sit down, stand up and pretty much any other movement involved in living day to day life. The cause of my (hopefully) impermanent No really, the fish was this big...restrictions are from an exhausting and incredibly fun weekend at the Marauders. It’s been a tradition that for my birthday each year, Lynn gets me a weekend of training with the Marauders adventure group. She first got it for me about 6 years ago, and I loved it so much I have asked for it each year since. Hey, I’m an easy guy to get along with, keep it simple right?

This year I was a part of their Spec Ops Training. We started off by physical training, which included sprints, pushups, sit-ups and a number of other torturous exercises. Now I’m the first to admit I’m not exactly on top of keeping this body in fighting shape, so I was already feeling it. Mike the owner, is a nice amiable guy in person, but pretty ruthless on the field. Just sayin’. Don’t get on his bad side.

We were divided into squads and spent the day rappelling, breaching doors, andReady to rappel learning tactics for shooting from a moving vehicle. We used UTM rounds, so the gear we carried was our own and the training experience was realistic. At the end of the day we ate dinner around a campfire, then collapsed into our sleeping bags.

At around 2AM we were awoken by some screaming instructors and gunfire, calling us to grab our gear for a night ops mission. I had been so tired I slept with my shoes on, so I grabbed the rest of my gear and ran towards my squad. There was heavy smoke and flares going off around us, and plenty of confusion. I got a nice shot of adrenaline pumping through my veins when an RPG went off right next to me. We ended up completing our mission, which was to rescue an Ambassador from enemy territory. We finally fell back in our sleeping bags around 6 am, only to wake up for more training around 7:30. Last year when I did some training with the Marauders group they shot a video of our squads performing missions, you can check it out HERE. I’m the one with the badass beard. ;-D

My gear bag consisted of a great many things, the most important being a hydration pack. Since we train in the desert in the middle of nowhere, keeping dehydration at bay is a very real and important challenge. I constantly was hydrating myself, and kept trail mix in my pockets for a quick energy boost. A med kit is always good to have. Even though the course is always run with a safety first policy, stuff happens. And of course, I brought a knife. ;-D I brought my Raider 5. I wanted something with a blade that could handle anything thrown at it. And also it just looked pretty badass with the rest of my gear. :-D

After the weekend was over I felt how I usually do, exhausted but extremely satisfied from a weekend of hard won, knock down drag out fun. Each year the recovery time is a little longer, and I have to admit I was feeling my age just a little bit this year. I think I’ll go take a nice long soak in the tub. Anybody got any Icy Hot?


Dennis is an enthusiastic outdoor adventurer, weekend warrior, and full time professional knifemaker. He lives in Arizona with his beautiful wife Lynn and their 4 little hellions.



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