The Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Asheville (SSN 758) departed Royal Australian Navy (RAN) base HMAS Stirling in Western Australia, March 20.

While in port, the crew had a busy slate of tours and public engagement activities, highlighted by a visit from Australian Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles and other Australian political leaders.

Asheville was visiting Perth for combined training exercises with RAN submarine forces as part of a regularly scheduled patrol in the Indo-Pacific region.

“Asheville’s visit to Western Australia demonstrates an investment in new operational capabilities, advanced technologies, and idea-sharing with some of our closest Allies,” said Cmdr. Tom Dixon, commanding officer of Asheville. “My crew is committed to the sustainment of a free and open Indo-Pacific region.”

In addition to the tour with the Deputy Prime Minister, the submarine hosted tours for other leading Australian political figures, to include Treasurer Jim Chalmers, Minister for Defense Industry Pat Conroy, plus Western Australia Federal MPs Minister for Northern Australia and Resources Madeleine King and Minister for Defense Personnel and Veterans’ Affairs Matt Keogh.

An underway during the middle of the visit provided a chance for the submarine to embark an additional group of Australian and diplomatic guests, for a rare opportunity to see what life is like at sea onboard a nuclear-powered submarine.

Guests for the underway included U.K. High Commissioner Vicki Treadell, U.K. Consul General Tina Redshaw and Federal Member for Solomon Luke Gosling MP. The guests were also joined by RAN Rear Adm. Matt Buckley, Head of Capability, Nuclear-Powered Submarine Taskforce, Rear Adm. Rick Seif, commander, Submarine Group 7, and U.S. Consul General Perth Siriana Nair.

Many Asheville Sailors enjoyed their time exploring the area around HMAS Stirling, to include restaurants in the Fremantle area, and the sights of Perth.

“I really enjoyed my time in Australia, particularly the restaurants in Perth and Fremantle,” said Lt. j.g. Michael Nix, operational safety officer onboard Asheville. “It was amazing to work with multiple Royal Australian commands as one team to maintain freedom of the seas in the INDOPACOM AOR.”

Asheville is assigned to Commander, Submarine Squadron (COMSUBRON) 15, which is located at Polaris Point, Naval Base Guam, in Apra Harbor, Guam, and consists of four Los Angeles-class attack submarines. The COMSUBRON 15 staff is responsible for providing training, material and personnel readiness support to these commands. Also based out of Naval Base Guam are submarine tenders USS Frank Cable (AS 40) and USS Emory S. Land (AS 39). The submarines and tenders are maintained as part of the U.S. Navy’s forward-deployed submarine force and are readily capable of meeting global operational requirements.

Asheville was commissioned September 1991 and is named for Asheville, North Carolina.