After World War II, the War Department decided that the American Soldier must be able to live and operate in any degree of cold. This decision was based on experience gained in combat, and predictions of future possibilities for international obligations. A group of task forces was therefore organized to test U.S. Army equipment in the cold.


Task Force Frigid and Task Force Williwaw were dispatched to Alaska during the winters of 1946 and 1947.


In 1949, the Department of the Army ordered the organization of the Arctic Test Branch at Big Delta Air Force Base (now known as Fort Greely), Alaska. A cadre for the organization was activated at Fort Knox, Kentucky, in March 1949, by the transfer of personnel from each of the "Army Field Force Boards". The organization moved to Alaska in July of 1949 and test operations were initiated. Shortly thereafter, the organization name was changed to the Arctic Training Center.


In 1957, it was renamed the U.S. Army Arctic Test Board (ATB) with the mission of conducting arctic service tests of all Army field equipment.

Driver Change


In August of 1962, as a result of the reorganization of the Army, the ATB was placed under the command of the Test and Evaluation Command (TECOM).


In 1964 the Board was renamed the Arctic Test Center.


The Arctic Test Center was renamed the Cold Regions Test Center.


In 1994, TECOM consolidated all natural environment test centers under the single operational control of the U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground (USAYPG) and CRTC's name was temporarily changed to the Cold Regions Test Activity.


Fort Greely was realigned under Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC).

Snow Trail Drive


The USAYPG commander, to better reflect its overarching mission and organizational structure, changed it back to Cold Regions Test Center in 1996.


TECOM re-designated as Developmental Test Command (DTC).


Operational Test Command (OPTEC) was designated U.S. Army Test and Evaluation Command.


Due to BRAC, CRTC's Headquarters (HQ) and rocket/missile storage was moved 110 miles to Fort Wainwright. Fort Greely was also revived as a ballistic missile defense interceptor site in 2001. The 18,000 acre cantonment area designated as Fort Greely, while the 652,000 acres of ranges and training land were redesignated as the Donnelley Training Area under Fort Wainwright. At this time, CRTC had facilities/offices on Fort Wainwright proper (HQ and Rocket/Missile storage), Donnelley Training Area (Bolio Lake, Mississippi, & Texas Test Complexes), and Fort Greely (HQ, Maintenance, Supply, Instrumentation, and Allied Trades).


In 2005 BRAC moved CRTC HQ back to Fort Greely. This move was accomplished through attrition, replacing departing personnel at Fort Greely instead of Fort Wainwright, with the last position transitioned in 2010. CRTC maintains the Rocket/Missile storage facility at Fort Wainwright, while all personnel and all other missions are housed and conducted at Fort Greely/Donnelley Training Area.


CRTC was reassigned provisionally to ATEC.

YPG Crest CRTC Patch