Ridge Runner

Ridge Runner’s mission is to develop and execute irregular warfare training across the state of West Virginia, contributing to the development of Special Operations Forces’ (SOF) and General Purpose Forces’ (GPF) irregular warfare understanding and capabilities, in order to integrate irregular warfare operations in support of national security.

The purpose is to provide challenging, realistic, and meaningful training to Department of Defense and other US agencies, enhancing the skills required to successfully navigate the human domain while leveraging limited resources to best meet the commander’s intent.

Ridge Runner staff is located in St. Albans, W.Va., but the program operates in different parts of the state because of its diverse training abilities. In a changing world where global security threats are taking new forms in an increasingly swift and unpredictable manner, Ridge Runner is a training opportunity for SOF and GPF to enhance their readiness to meet these missions.

Ridge Runner Irregular Warfare training program:

• Flexible, realistic scenario that can be developed to fit an incoming unit’s mission essential task list and commander’s guidance

• Scenario can incorporate the five pillars of irregular warfare (counterterrorism, counterinsurgency, stability operations, foreign internal defense and unconventional warfare)

• Encompasses 500,000 acres of public and private land use agreements in West Virginia. The varied terrain lends itself to being useful for diverse training needs for incoming units.

• All WVNG facilities across the state are accessible for use

• Support of WVNG members as role players and exercise support

• Involvement of other government agencies such as local elected officials, economic development leaders, law enforcement agencies, and ancillary support such as emergency services

• Dynamic infiltration routes, including water, air and land with support from fixed wing, rotary wing and water rescue groups

Ridge Runner’s strategic vision is to be adopted by the National Guard Bureau as a training program model that can be exported to other states. NGB could leverage National Guard capabilities to meet training shortfalls that active duty branches and other government agencies may experience.