March Back Information



Staff Reports, July 29, 2019

For basic cadets of the Air Force Academy’s Class of 2023, their transformation from civilians to cadets began a new chapter July 21st as they marched out to Jacks Valley for 10 days of intensive field training. During the week-and-a-half long training, basic cadets live in field-like conditions and endure arguably the most difficult portion of their 6-week Basic Cadet Training.

Everything from learning how to properly handle and fire an M-4 Carbine to chemical warfare training to several trials on various obstacle courses, Jacks Valley serves as the “unofficial” culmination of BCT. The march back from JV is special. It represents a significant milestone for basic cadets who’ve just withstood perhaps the most challenging experience of their young adult lives, and it’s a memory nearly every Academy graduate looks back upon and remembers vividly.

For Wednesday’s March Back, here are the top five things you’ll want to know:


Graduate March Back!

This year’s march back will feature the first-ever Graduate March Back! In total, 191 Academy graduates have registered to participate in the event and range from 1961 to 2019 graduates. They will assemble behind the formation of basic cadets and march the full 5.5 miles from Jacks Valley. Keep in mind, only those who registered can participate, so if you didn’t, there’s always next year!

Let’s see those signs!

The viewing of the march back is open to the public and we highly encourage family and friends to come out to cheer on their basic cadets! Those who wish to attend can enter through the North Gate no earlier than 7:30 a.m. and park in the Clune Arena overflow parking lot. Parents are not to cross to the south side of that street, and should remain on the north side closest to the parking lot. The march back will begin around 9:30 a.m. and conclude at 11:15 a.m. Here’s a map to help you out, because who doesn’t like a good map?

We know you love them… but  keep your distance!

You still can’t hug them! As this event is still part of Basic Cadet Training for the Class of 2023, there will be no opportunity for one-on-one interaction with your cadet.  We have been asked to respect the cadet training environment and must honor the Cadet Wing’s request.  Your first opportunity for interaction will be after the Acceptance Day Parade on August 6th.

Weather Watch!

It’s going to be hot! Weather forecasts predict a high of 87 degrees on Wednesday, so make sure to dress appropriately, bring water and wear sun protection.


We will be there covering it, so look for pictures tomorrow afternoon!