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How often did a Red Army soldier march per day?

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  • How often did a Red Army soldier march per day?

    Especially during the later phases of the war, post-1943. What would be a good estimate of the average?
    "To be defeated and not submit, is victory; to be victorious and rest on one's laurels, is defeat."
    --Marshal Józef Piłsudski

  • #2
    Originally posted by Pilsudski View Post
    Especially during the later phases of the war, post-1943. What would be a good estimate of the average?
    It depended on the situation and transport.....
    The later period was very dynamic
    If you fire a rifle at the past, the future will fire a cannon at you.....

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    • #3
      Ok let's say infantryman on foot.
      "To be defeated and not submit, is victory; to be victorious and rest on one's laurels, is defeat."
      --Marshal Józef Piłsudski

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      • #4
        To many variables. Rain or snow or dry. Paved road or dirt or across country. You'll probaly get about 3 -4 miles per hour with a rest every 2 hours of perhaps 30 minutes.

        There are storys of Inf in the Old West that would do 50 on a forced march. That doesn't say what fighting condition they were in at the end of the day.
        "Ask not what your country can do for you"

        Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

        you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Half Pint John View Post
          There are storys of Inf in the Old West that would do 50 on a forced march. That doesn't say what fighting condition they were in at the end of the day.
          Is that about 80 km a day with full fighting gear? It's like 11 hours non-stop walking at a pretty fast pace. Even marathon runners would be dropping like flies after such ordeal.
          www.histours.ru

          Siege of Leningrad battlefield tour

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Half Pint John View Post
            You'll probaly get about 3 -4 miles per hour with a rest every 2 hours of perhaps 30 minutes.
            Alright thanks. I wasn't asking for any exact measurements, just a rough estimate.
            "To be defeated and not submit, is victory; to be victorious and rest on one's laurels, is defeat."
            --Marshal Józef Piłsudski

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            • #7
              Our common training march was 28 km with a fairly light combat load. Weapon, a ration, water (two liters), ammunition... perhaps 12-15 kg. We usually completed it in four hours over the coastal hills of California or Virginia. If the ground were flat then closer to three hours. Two or three rests of ten minutes were normal. Those who were in good condition would need little rest before other tasks after this sort of march. Clerks and cooks suffered.

              We usually ran the last few kilometers just to increase the challenge.

              Certainly more was possible, but the battalion surgeons could predict with mathmatical certainity the steady increase in foot injuries with each extra kilometer. We had to be in good condition to move further & faster without significant foot & leg injuries.

              Doubling the load with rations, blankets, ammunition, would slow the pace significantly.

              A completely different problem with large columns of many battalions is the 'friction' which causes the column to slow its average speed. This friction is a function of the experience & effciency of the commanders staff in keeping the column moving smoothly

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              • #8
                Yes that's a good way to set this up; how much would a Red Army infantryman march per day during training?
                "To be defeated and not submit, is victory; to be victorious and rest on one's laurels, is defeat."
                --Marshal Józef Piłsudski

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by ShAA View Post
                  Is that about 80 km a day with full fighting gear? It's like 11 hours non-stop walking at a pretty fast pace. Even marathon runners would be dropping like flies after such ordeal.
                  There are storys of Inf in the Old West
                  IIRC they were up and moving by 0430 with only short breaks in between until about mid might.

                  While Hollywood doesn't know it, much of the Army in the West was Inf, sometime horse mounted but not always.

                  I'll see if I can find any references to support the STORY.
                  "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                  Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                  you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

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                  • #10
                    Thats funny. All the eyewitness accounts from Soviet soldiers I have read describe riding trains or vehicals. Nothing in my reading is from a infantryman who marched'. Motor rifle, tanks, aircraft mechanics, artillery, service units, but no long infantry walks.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Half Pint John View Post
                      IIRC they were up and moving by 0430 with only short breaks in between until about mid might.

                      While Hollywood doesn't know it, much of the Army in the West was Inf, sometime horse mounted but not always.

                      I'll see if I can find any references to support the STORY.
                      Okay, in 1789 Suvorovs troops were sent to aid the Austrians against Turks and they marched 52 km in 28 hours what was considered an exceptionally high speed of troop movement. Still, Suvorov's troops were specifically trained, among other things, to march long distances at a fast pace.
                      www.histours.ru

                      Siege of Leningrad battlefield tour

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                      • #12
                        CS- sounds about right, most hikes done here in light gear are at a 6-7 KPH pace.

                        BUT, these are meant to challenge or toughen you up and are done in small frames (company, tops), I certainly wouldn't expect the same while marching in the real deal.

                        A battalion frame pace with full combat gear (for 48 hours) moving in combat formation is about 1-2 KPH.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Golani View Post
                          CS- sounds about right, most hikes done here in light gear are at a 6-7 KPH pace.

                          BUT, these are meant to challenge or toughen you up and are done in small frames (company, tops), I certainly wouldn't expect the same while marching in the real deal.

                          A battalion frame pace with full combat gear (for 48 hours) moving in combat formation is about 1-2 KPH.
                          Actually most of those training marches I was on were battalion size. But I think we agree a sustained march of a large unit/s can be a much slower.

                          Searching my book shelves I'm reminded of Col Edisons report describing the combat marches he witnessed the Chinese Communists make in the 1930s. With a very light load of only weapons and minimum ammunition he accompanied raiding groups of large companies or small battalions that moved 10 to 30 lm to a target, then after the fight march another fifty or sixty plus kilometers to a safe haven.

                          Edgar Snow may have described similar marches, tho I dont have any of his writing here to check.

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                          • #14
                            You have to keep a pace that your troops can handle. THe Urban "Prolo" Divs would have been shredded trying to march 25 km in a day, but I bet the Siberians could have done twice that and still fight the next day if they had to.

                            Also, the conditions are going to play merry hob with you your calculations. Summertime means good dry ground and a minimum of gear. Winter will slow everything down, and in Spring and Fall mud making 5 km in a day can be a major feat.
                            "Why is the Rum gone?"

                            -Captain Jack

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                            • #15
                              I recall that in army, finnish that is, we were supposed to be able to march 20-30kms with full gear and still be in fighting condition.
                              Wisdom is personal

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