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VIDEO: Here’s why those helicopters were buzzing over the Sault

Four CH-146 Griffons are on their way back home to CFB Valcartier in Quebec after participating in a large Canadian Forces training exercise at CFB Wainwright in Alberta

Did you spot those four helicopters soaring high above the Sault? You definitely weren’t alone.

Lots of people around town — and on the outskirts — saw the four military choppers flying in formation yesterday and today. They passed over the downtown core this morning, causing quite a stir.

SooToday reached out to the Department of National Defence to find out what the helicopters were up to. Here’s what we learned.

Based at CFB Valcartier in Quebec, the four CH-146 Griffons were on assignment at CFB Wainwright in Alberta, participating in the Canadian military’s largest training exercise of the year.

Between May 8 and 22, approximately 2,500 Canadian Armed Forces members and partner personnel participated in the Exercise MAPLE RESOLVE, a complex training event that ensures soldiers “are prepared to deploy in support of Canadians in any capacity, including combat operations.”

The four Griffons were on their way back home to Quebec when they stopped in Sault Ste. Marie on Wednesday. 

“They overnighted in Sault Ste. Marie last night, and are expected to depart today to continue their transit home,” said David Lavallee, a spokesperson for the Royal Canadian Air Force.

Four CH-146 Griffons spent the night at the Sault Ste. Marie Airport on May 24, 2023. Photo courtesy of Meaghan Vautour


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