(FORT CARSON, COLO.) — Soldiers with Fort Carson’s 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division continue war fighting training with their latest exercise, a Mountain Warrior Strike.

The training is meant to prepare units and their leaders for a real-world combat scenario to increase readiness and combat ability.

“This is the closest you get to combat,” said Captain Corey James Masaracchia.

Soldiers are put in the field for combat preparedness training before being accredited at Ft. Polk, Louisiana in January.

“The live fire is the most realistic you’ll ever get to combat, just because we’re shooting live rounds, trying to incorporate all of the different aspects of what combat would be like,” Captain Masaracchia said.

Soldiers tested the accuracy of M4s and other artillery. They also conducted an arms breach of a mined wire obstacle and practiced trench and urban terrain breach and clearance exercises. Every exercise utilized a different scenario to prepare the unit for warfighting.

“I’ve been the Company Commander for two months now, so I haven’t had a lot of time to work with the guys and train them, but they’ve done exactly what’s expected,” Captain Masaracchia said.

Soldiers also used live hand grenades, live Bangalore torpedos, and Strykers.

“We try and train and certify leaders on indirect and direct fire capabilities while integrating the Stryker platform,” said captain Masaracchia.

The Stryker, a family of eight-wheeled armored fighting vehicles, helps soldiers fight natural terrain challenges while advancing the mission.

Battling with heavy equipment and in rough terrain – soldiers say the smoke is the best part.

“You’re seeing all the explosions, you’ve got the smoke and they are all on a pretty big high after doing a training like this,” Captain Masaracchia said.