Fort Irwin Army Base
On 9 August 1979, the Department of the Army announced that Fort Irwin had been selected as the site for the National Training Center. With over 1,000 square miles (2,600 km2) for maneuver and ranges, an uncluttered electromagnetic spectrum, airspace restricted to military use, and its isolation from densely populated areas, Fort Irwin was an ideal site for this facility. The National Training Center was officially activated 16 October 1980, and Fort Irwin was transferred from the California Army National Guard back to the Regular Army and returned to active status on 1 July 1981. The opposing force at the National Training Center (NTC) is the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment, the Blackhorse Cavalry, who are stationed at the base to provide an opposing force to units on a training rotation at Fort Irwin. Fort Irwin works within the R-2508 Special Use Airspace Complex.
Additionally, the NTC provides a crucial supply of experience-based information and data vital to doctrine, equipment, training and force development to prepare for success in the Global War on Terrorism and future joint battlefields. Fort Irwin provides realistic joint and combined arms training focused on developing Soldiers, leaders, and units of America’s Army for success on the 21st century battlefield.
In September 2017, a state-of-the-art hospital was opened that provides healthcare services to the Fort Irwin beneficiaries.
Arriving at Fort Irwin
Fort Irwin is located approximately 37 miles northeast of Barstow, Calif., midway between Las Vegas and Los Angeles. The nearest airports are located in Ontario, Calif. (120 miles), Los Angeles (175 miles) and Las Vegas (180 miles). Because of the distance to the airports, it is highly recommended that Soldiers arrive to Fort Irwin with a privately owned vehicle. Another option for transportation from the airport to the post is a Greyhound Bus.
All Soldiers must report to the NTC Replacement Detachment at the Reception Campus at Building 109 to begin in-processing. The Replacement Detachment is open 24 hours daily. While in-processing lodging is provided for unaccompanied SGT’s and below at the Replacement Detachment. Temporary lodging on post is available at the Landmark Inn (760) 386-4040, or there are several hotel options in Barstow.
4,000-5,000 soldiers from other installations rotate through the NTC each month.