US Military Installation Overview - Fort Polk, Louisiana

Overview / Mission

Fort Polk
JRTC / Ft Polk LA. .mil

Fort Polk is the Army's Joint Readiness Training Center (JRTC) that has the mission to train and deploy combat and combat support units. From its start as a base for the historic Louisiana Maneuvers in the 1940s, to a basic training post during Vietnam, and its current missions as the Joint Readiness Training Center (JRTC), Fort Polk has executed all of the Army's mission throughout several times of conflict and war.

The Joint Readiness Training Center provides advance level joint training for the Army (Active and Reserve Component), Air Force and Navy contingency forces in deployment and tactical operations under realistic conditions of low to mid intensity combat. Currently Fort Polk is supporting the training for the war on terrorism by providing contingency training for the Army's light infantry and special operations forces and by deploying home station and reserve component forces as well.

The JRTC is one of the Army’s three Combat Training Centers (CTC) built to train infantry brigade task forces and their subordinate elements in the Joint Contemporary Operational Environment. Units deploy to Fort Polk to train against it's Opposing Force (OPFOR) in realistic, mission essential scenarios with the 1st Battalion - 509th Infantry (Airborne).  The JRTC training scenario are basically mission rehearsals for actual operations the organization is scheduled to conduct. 

Official website for Fort Polk

Base Information

training at Fort Polk

Fort Polk is located in west-central Louisiana, about 120 miles from Shreveport, 150 miles from Baton Rouge, 250 from New Orleans, and 180 from Houston.

Being a small installation with about 8,000 soldiers,Fort Polk is located in Vernon Parish in West-Central Louisiana, better known as "The Crossroads". Fort Polk has many different facilities and opportunities for soldiers and their families. Educational opportunities, arts and crafts, sports, hunting and fishing, outdoor recreation and other facilities are readily available for the service member and family.

Phone Directory

Facebook Page

Population / Major Units Assigned

Polk Training Combat Troops
Polk Training Combat Troops. .mil

Fort Polk population on-post is roughly 8,500 active duty military and more than 6,000 DoD civilian employees. More than 12,000 military dependents live on or near the Fort Polk Army base.

Units currently stationed at Fort Polk include the Warrior Brigade (Headquarters Command) contains a number of support units with early deploying wartime missions, Medical, Dental and Military Police Commands.

The Joint Readiness Training Center Operations Group

3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division

1st Battalion - 509th Infantry (Airborne)

115th Combat Support Hospital

Bay Jones Army Comunity Hospital

5th Aviation Battalion

Noncommissioned Officers Academy

Visiting / Living on Fort Polk

Polk housing

The hotels at Fort Polk provide everything you need to live, work, and relax while away from home.  All rooms in the temporary lodging have full amenities to include cable television, mini kitchen with sink, microwave, coffee pot and refrigerator. Irons and ironing boards are in each room, cribs and high chairs are available. Laundry facilities and children's playground are on premises as well as school bus stop. Close proximity to Child Development Center, Youth Center, Commissary, Post Exchange, Main Post Chapel and 24-hour Shopette.

The Warrior's Keep has 248 double occupancy rooms for TDY visitors. Warrior's Keep offers all rooms with two twin-sized beds, individual lockable storage, desk and chair, cable television (TV) and bathroom with shower. Close proximity to dining facilities, Chapels and Post Headquarters. Laundry facilities are available. Its rates are $9.50 per night.


All active duty service member with accompanying family members assigned to an installation within 35 miles of Fort Polk are eligible for Privatized Family Housing at Fort Polk. For new move-ins, on the date of occupancy, military members must have a minimum of six months remaining on their current duty assignment. 


Children from military families at Fort Polk attend all area schools in the Vernon Parish communities.  Children of military families who reside on/off post may attend the South and North Polk Elementary schools, Vernon Elementary, Leesville, Pickering or DeRidder, depending upon where they live. All children in grades 5 - 12, residing both on and off-post, may attend schools in Vernon or Beauregard Parishes. The Vernon Parish School Board operates 20 schools with an enrollment more than 9,000 students.

Child Care

The Fort Polk Child Development Center is located in Building 701 on Colorado Avenue.

The CDC provides care for children ages 6 weeks to 6 years of age

In addition to full time child care, the following programs are available at the Fort Polk CDC:

Before and After Kindergarten Care
Part Day Pre-School Program
Hourly Care
Family Child Care- for children ages 4 weeks to 12 years and is very flexible, with many accredited providers available.

Fort Polk MWR Website

Though Fort Polk is a fairly rural area within the center of Louisiana, within a few hours drive you will find several large cities such as Baton Rouge the state capitol home of Louisiana State University, New Orleans, the Gulf Coast, and Houston Texas.