New Command scenario: Excellent Loon

April 25, 2014 · Posted in Uncategorized 

Database – CWDB
Author – Mark Gellis

This scenario assumes that tensions increased between the Soviet Union and Canada in the mid-1970s.

By 1976, Canada had all but declared it would not permit Soviet military vessels to operate freely in its waters, or even in its Exclusive Economic Zone, except for innocent passage.  And some of the more conservative members of Canada’s government have even questioned whether any passage of Soviet naval vessels through Canadian waters should be considered “innocent.”

The Soviets, partly to gather intelligence–what better time to test a potential adversary than when they are supposedly doing their utmost to detect your ships and submarines?–and also in the hopes of embarassing the West, have increased their patrols near Canada.


Author’s Notes

For those unfamiliar with it, the loon is an aquatic bird somewhat larger than a duck.  It is an excellent swimmer and can hold its breath and remain underwater for more than a minute at a time while it hunts fish and other prey.

Thanks to Chris (aka Randomizer) for some very helpful suggestions.


*** FLASH *** FLASH *** FLASH ***

ATTN: Commanding Officer, Athabaskan

You are instructed to immediately initiate OPERATION EXCELLENT LOON.


We have reason to believe Soviet submarines have entered the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, in direct challenge to our declaration that foreign states will not be allowed to “conduct military operations, including training” in these waters without our express permission.


Current sonar data suggests two Soviet submarines are presently in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, a ballistic missile submarine and a nuclear attack submarine.  The latter is probably on station primarily as an escort to the ballistic missile submarine.


Your task force consists of DDH 282 Athabaskan, DDH 265 Annapolis, and S 74 Okanagan.

Designated aircraft at CFB Greenwood are chopped to your command.


Locate the Soviet ballistic missile submarine in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence and force it to leave Canadian waters.  This can be accomplished by closing to within one or two miles of the submarine, getting right on top of her and staying there, pinging her relentlessly with your sonar, and continuing to do this until it is obvious that we have discovered her and have a hard fix on her location.

As ballistic missile submarines rely on not having their location revealed in order to perform their missions, it is likely that once the Soviets understand we have a clear fix on the exact location of their submarine that they will move it out of the Gulf of Saint Lawrence.


Focus your attention on the ballistic missile submarine.

Do not under any circumstances fire on Soviet submarines unless you receive specific orders to do so or are under attack.


Command: Athabaskan

Signal: EMCON State C (Unrestricted Emissions)

Good luck.  God save the Queen.


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