June 3 (UPI) -- The USS Mount Whitney made a scheduled logistics stop in Oslo, Norway, earlier this week, the Navy said on Thursday.
The ship's visit follows the ship's participation in the NATO exercise Steadfast Defender at the end of May.
"Team 20 provided incredible support to Joint Forces Command Norfolk and Commander, 2nd Fleet, providing persistent and reliable command, control, and communications, which enabled the successful execution of Steadfast Defender '21," Mount Whitney's Commanding Officer Capt. David Pollard said Thursday in a Navy press release.
During Tuesday's stop, the crew was not able to disembark due to COVID-19 restrictions, according to the Navy.
But crew members held a steel beach picnic -- that is, a party on the deck -- to celebrate the completion of Steadfast Defender 2021.
The crew also participated in a wreath laying ceremony at the Norwegian monument "Orlogsgasten," which pays tribute to Norwegian mariners who served in the joint fleet and the Royal Norwegian Navy between 1510 and 1945.
"The United States and Norway are close NATO allies and collaborate on a wide range of issues important to both nations and to the rest of the Alliance," Pollard said.
"Allied logistics operations in Norway, evidenced through USS Mount Whitney's routine visit to Oslo, builds upon Norway's ability to receive Allied reinforcements and is critical to credible deterrence and transatlantic security," he added.
The Mount Whitney is a Blue Ridge-class command and control ship forward deployed to Gaeta, Italy, with a combined crew of sailors and Military Sealift Command civil service mariners.