News‎ > ‎

Team Training, November, 2015

posted Nov 17, 2015, 8:55 PM by Ray Bloch   [ updated Nov 17, 2015, 9:02 PM ]
The SAR team met at the Potter Pass trailhead, in the Sierras above Huntington Lake at 8.300 feet altitude, for winter training. This is a trail that gets a lot of activity at all times of year. Because of the drought, there was very little snow at this time of year. This may sound nice, but it lulls hikers to take chances that might otherwise would not take. A fast moving winter storm could change things! In the past, it was common for there to be 5 feet of snow in this area. This year, there was one foot or less accumulation. Never-the-less, it was subfreezing and great conditions for training. Team One sent a group out to recon the Twin Lakes area, about 4 miles away over Potter Pass at 9,600 feet. Team One spent the night out on the trail and worked on snow camping techniques and snowshoe hiking. I saw a photo of these guys around the campfire that night, so I'm proud that they made the tough conditions like home. Team Two manned the Command Post, which is our new SARbulance vehicle. It is not yet certified for missions, so it was a great opportunity to work out the bugs and get it mission ready. Two members manned the CP, making sure that radio communications were maintained and coordinating events. The teams did great and everyone survived well in the extreme altitude and weather conditions. As is to underscore our purpose, a winter storm blew in as we were exiting the area Sunday around noon and quickly inundated the area with snow and ice. Everyone made it down the hill safely without injury.