March Column Regulations

By Christian Ankerstjerne

March Column Length

Regular Infantry

A regular infantry battalion had a march column length of 750 meters. A reinforced infantry battalion, consisting of an infantry battalion, an infantry gun platoon, an artillery battery, and an engineer company, had a march length of 1300 meters.

The time it took for a unit to move one column length was significant when the movement of units intersected each other. The following data is the column length and time needed to pass for a march group, consisting of one reinforced infantry regiment with two artillery battalions. If only one artillery battalion was included, the column length was 1400 meters shorter.

Unit Column Length Time Needed
Without safety distance 6 000 m 1.5 h
With safety distance 9 000-10 000 m 2.5 h
Distance, first company and vanguard battalion 1 000-1 500 m -
Distance, vanguard battalion and main unit 1 500-2 000 m -
Distance, march groups 4 000 m 1 h

Motorized Infantry

Unit When Stationary At 15 km/h At 25 km/h
Motorized infantry battalion 2 150 m 5 280 m 7 600 m
Reinforced motorized infantry regiment
  • Infantry regiment
  • Light artillery battalion
  • Engineer company
  • Anti-tank company
11 600 m 27 000 m 29 000 m
Tank Battalion 2 250 m 5 500 m 8 000 m
Motorcycle Battalion 4 000 m 10 000 m 14 000 m
Heavy artillery battalion 1 900 m 4 600 m 6 700 m
Motorized infantry division without supply train 48 600 m 120 000 m 170 000 m

March Speed

These numbers were general guidelines, and were heavily influenced by road conditions.

On Foot and Horse Drawn

Type By Day By Night
Mixed units, all weapon types 4 km/h 3 km/h
Mounted 6-7 km/h 5 km/h
Bicycle 12 km/h -
Bicycle, short distances1 20 km/h -

Motorized Units

Type By Day By Night
Fully tracked 20 km/h 12 km/h
Half-tracked 25-30 km/h 15 km/h
Wheeled 30-40 km/h 20 km/h
Motorcycles 40 km/h 20 km/h

Daily March Distances

Type Distance
Mixed units, all weapon types 30-50 km
Mounted 50-60 km
Tracked 150-200 km
Wheeled 250-300 km

Notes

  1. Much less against the wind. Back.

Sources

  1. Anhaltspunkte für Marsch. Berlin : Kriegsakademie Hörsaal B, 1943. 2 p.