352nd SOW's POTFF program hosts National Three Peaks challenge for Airmen
By Courtesy of Preservation of the Force and Family , 352nd Special Operation Wing
/ Published November 07, 2019
RAF Mildenhall --
In the history of military culture, the idea of seeking out support in the form of counseling, education, meditation or therapy was unthinkable. It would also be unimaginable to pursue mountain pinnacles on foot, once considered the realm of gods. They were enchanting, but physically elusive. Now mountaineering is a favorite pastime that only requires a sturdy pair of boots and few simple odds and ends for contingencies. With changing times and implementation of the Preservation of the Force and Family program, the special operations community can now embrace and explore the hills and valleys of life. Mountains of the mind can be the new frontier of alluring adventures and discovery.
Over the first weekend of fall, a group of 14 active duty members from the 352d Special Operations Wing joined POTFF to conquer the National Three Peaks Challenge, paired with another separate excursion to Mt. Snowdon. The goal of the Three Peaks Challenge is to summit Ben Nevis - Scotland, Scaffel Pike - Lake District, and Mt. Snowdon – Wales, all within 24 hours. The hike covers 25.2 miles with 10,052 feet of ascent, a pilgrimage for those in search of illuminating their own internal limits. It is physically punishing, mentally demanding and, by all accounts, miserable to endure. The team finished one hour past the allotted 24, still considering the endeavor a success.
POTFF, is an embedded group of professionals specifically designed to build resilience, improve operational performance, and ensure SOF readiness. The program’s goal is to build and implement a holistic approach to address the pressure on our force. Along with immersion in the units, the POTFF team has the luxury of providing lodging, transport and meals for retreats to increase resilience. These are opportunities to experience something new and learn about oneself in the company of others from the wing.
Overwhelming requests for outdoor adventuring prompted the execution of the Three Peaks Challenge. The excursions always integrate tailored education, and this trip had a focus on emotional intelligence meant to shed light on how the individuals interact with others and lend awareness to areas of improvement for social interaction.