Fort Bia is a garrison base and training base located in the southern midlands of Ares continent. Along with Fort Enyo and Fort Nyx, Fort Bia is one of the three garrison bases on Ares continent that also double as the Strata Military Academy training grounds.
The midlands around Fort Bia are forested, used for training grounds and also logging operations. The base was situated in the south of Ares because the midlands terrain there is relatively uneven which is sub-optimal for ‘real’ industrial logging but perfect for training cadets. Hills, small cliffs, gullies and valleys are all common. These are formed by water run-off and a lot of the region is often wet and muddy. Rainfall is common as is midlands fog. The lumber produced at Fort Bia has a long history verging upon tradition of being poorly cut and low quality, usually used for wood-chips of paper-pulp, and this is due to the use of cadets as lumberjacks and the cutting schedule being determined by curriculum rather than wood growth and quality.
The surface components of the base are a series of entrance points for mechs and heavy vehicles, built into a cliff face and defended by gun emplacements and bunkers, as well as a central landing zone for VTOLs, fixed wing aircraft and airships. Beneath the surface, a network of tunnels connects these access points, spanning several kilometres. The airstrips are roughly central and located at the top of the cliff.
It has been suggested that other than the static defences, and deploying military units, that the main defence strategy of the base is knowledge of the terrain allowing for very accurate artillery fire, while the terrain will make evasive manoeuvring of the targets very difficult.
The intermediate classes of cadets are trained at Fort Bia. Training includes the use of long shifts in forestry mechs to teach ’mech handling and enduring prolonged exposure to real cockpit conditions, including heat. Large scale battle exercises focusing upon forested terrain and uneven ground are a major aspect of classes at Fort Bia. Survival training, infantry tactics and ground navigation are also compulsory classes for cadets in all branches of military training.