Volume 2, Issue 1
January 9, 1997
Editors: Chuck and Mary Girven, Mickey Jojola
"That Others May Live..."
Top of the Hill
Pinching Pennies
Public Relations
Bronze Boot Award
This Month's Articles
Boots and Blisters
Who's Who and New
On the Right Track
Web News
Classified Ads
Business as Usual
Gearing Up
Member Spotlight
Special Notes
Top of the Hill by Mike Dugger
I hope everyone had an enjoyable holiday. I had a great time with family and friends in the Midwest, but I'm glad to be back in the New Mexico sun and mountains. Now let's get down to business...

We had a terrific year in 1996, in terms of growth and professionalism of our team. I think we had some great times in the process, too. Witness the whitewater training and the overnight on Capilla peak, to name just a couple. In 1997, I'm looking forward to another productive year, and to enjoying the camaraderie of team members on training activities and missions. We'll keep training focused on providing some important skills improvement, and make it fun in the process. Here's my list of goals that we need to strive for in 1997. This represents a careful look into the crystal ball as of December, 1996. Of course we can make appropriate course corrections during the year, based on new information that becomes available.

First, the state will begin certifying SAR personnel in basic skills this year. Our training is already well-aligned with state certification. To maintain the ability to field a large number of skilled searchers, we should work toward having 90% of the presently active members certified by the end of this year, and have new members certified within one year of joining the team. Incident commanders may also start requesting specific types of resources, based on the needs of the mission. Individuals with the most training and experience will be eligible for more difficult missions. Details of the state's method for typing resources are still in the works, but we have some general ideas about what skills will be required of "type I" responders. We should strive to maintain at least 25% of our active members in this classification. The ability to communicate using repeaters and amateur radio frequencies is an important skill, and based on the team's interest at the December meeting, Cibola will organize study sessions to prepare for HAM licensing exams early this year. I encourage each of you to participate. It's not difficult, and being a licensed HAM can be fun! Also on the subject of member skills, our existing "qualification code" system will be revised this year. The new system will be designed to mesh nicely with the state method of typing, and include special skills possessed by our members, but not captured in the state certification or typing systems.

We acquired a complete set of low angle technical gear late in 1996, and we should become proficient with its use. We'll ask AMRC to help us come up to speed, and welcome the opportunity to work with them on missions using our new gear. We will also continue regular practice with litter packing and hauling, so that we can operate more smoothly on missions when it really counts.

A number of members have expressed an interest in developing a SAR education program for children. We already do a few SAR education presentations each year, but we'll explore formalizing this program so that we have a number of "modules" ready for presentation to different age groups.

Thank you for the opportunity to lead this organization for another year. I am looking forward to another terrific year for CSAR in 1997!
Boots and Blisters by Larry Mervine
December 14, 1996 -- First Annual Cibola Turkey Challenge. We did not have enough team members to have the Turkey Challenge. But the twelve members that did show up litter evac'd Don Gibson through the Cedro Peak course in two hours and forty-eight minutes. The team did an excellent job of assessing Don's shoulder injury and packing. It is important that every team member become proficient in litter evacs. Cibola had many evacs this year. Eleven people on a litter evac is very slim, unless the evac is less than two miles. The Cedro Peak loop chosen for the Turkey Challenge is about four miles. The litter team was beginning to show signs of fatigue. Each member had the opportunity to rotate positions on the litter.

Lets take a minute here and review the positions on the litter. There are five positions on a litter:

  1. Haul line: People pulling the load.
  2. Brake line: People holding the litter to a slow pace down a hill.
  3. Front litter bearers: There to balance and steady the litter. The right front person is the leader of the litter team.
  4. Middle litter bearers: Keep litter balanced and steady.
  5. Rear litter bearers: This position is very important! They balance and steady the litter, but also by watching the litter wheel and making corrections can effect the ease of the other litter bearers.
At anytime, anyone can stop the litter by yelling STOP. There are a few reasons to yell STOP; too tried, an obstacle on trail, litter out of control, a loose strap or a patient needs help.

If some litter bearers are lifting up while others are pushing down will cause everyone to work harder and as a result burnout the entire litter team faster. The best way to learn this is by actually working the litter. We will have at least four litter trainings this year. I expect everyone to attend at least one.

Hike of the MonthBlue Ribbon Trail (#236)0900, January 25-26, 1997
Trailhead:Otero Canyon, South 14, 3.8 miles South of Old 66, West Side
R.T. Distance: @6 milesElevation Min/Max: 6900/7500
Hiking Time @3 hoursHazards: Speeding mountain bikers
Topos: Sedillo, Escabosa
Trail #236 has been re-routed for erosion control purposes. To get to the new route, travel 5 minutes down trail #56. Stay on #56 for a few yards beyond the sign for Trail #15. At the bottom of the arroyo, Trail #56 will continue straight ahead, while Trail #236 (no sign) will make a switchback up the hill on your left. (UTM 374.796, 3877.145) From there, it will switch back a few more times and then finally head 'south' along the high mesa that is west of Cedro Village. About 15 minutes from the trailhead, on the left side of the 'switch' of the last switchback, you'll see the cut tree limbs attempting to block the old route for Trail #236. The trail is somewhat obscure through a few places, but soon meets up with a newly-constructed logging road. From here, just follow the logging road (for an hour) until you come to the obvious junction with an 'east-west' road. There will be a sign on your right, facing away from you, with Trail #236 depicted as heading to your right and indicating that you came from Trail #106! (UTM 375.543, 3873.480) At the junction, you will also notice a sign for Trail #321 off to your left. Going further down past that sign would get you to the entrance to David Canyon. Returning from the junction, note a trail which you passed on the way in, and which goes off to your left. That is actually Trail #236 and explains how you ended up on Trail #106. At various places along the route there will be spur roads and trails. Most of these just rejoin the road further up, but a few lead off to other trails. For this trek, stay on the road - you may want to explore a few spurs on subsequent trips (and in warmer weather).
Business as Usual by John Mindock
Bob and I are dividing up some of the work that has been done by the Secretary in the past. Generally, tasks about membership and attendance will be performed by Bob.

All CSAR members can get orange CSAR business cards from me. Just get me the details. No charge.

The 1996 Annual Report is available. I will bring paper copies to the February meeting for those who request one.

Thanks for re-electing me - looking forward to a great SAR year.
Pinching Pennies by Melissa Smith
I'm looking for someone to volunteer to help with CSAR bookkeeping and gas vouchers with the idea that this person would be willing to run for Treasurer next year. This would be a good opportunity to learn how things work. It would also provide a knowledgeable backup in case something comes up during the year.

Just another reminder about gas vouchers -- PLEASE GET THEM TO ME WITHIN TWO DAYS OF THE BUSINESS MEETING!
Who's Who and New by Bob Ulibarri
In case you have not heard, I have been asked and accepted the position of Membership Officer for 1997. 1996 was a very strong year with regards to new and active membership participation. We have had a record number of people turn out for trainings and missions. I hope the growth of this team will continue throughout 1997.

My main goal for the coming year is to develop and implement a standardized "New Member Orientation" package to establish uniformity at the orientations. I will also have the responsibilities of maintaining the team's meeting, training and mission attendance records. This is a new task assigned to the Membership Officer in 1997. I have also recommended the Membership Officer maintain the 800 MHz radios, so that new members who have had orientation and are qualified as "field ready" will at least have "inter-team communications" on missions.

I am new to the position and welcome any comments or concerns that you may have. Please feel free to contact me at home or at work concerning the membership of the team. I also will welcome any comments once the standardized "New Member Orientation" package is completed. Please contact me directly concerning this package.

We have several people coming up for active membership in the next couple of months. Rosemarie Renn is due for active membership this month. Andrew Parker, Quentin Dirks, Tom Bretz and Mary Girven are up in February. Ella May Robinson, Todd Hamill, Jay Ellington, Robert Marchbanks, and John Schroeder are due in March. A new member's probation period starts at the first event they attend. Congratulations to the new and upcoming members of CSAR.
Gearing Up by Melinda Ricker
There will be a gear logging/tagging party to identify our recent equipment purchases on Saturday, January 18th at 2 pm at the Rickers'. Call 286-0213 if you have questions or need directions. BYOB!
Public Relations by Chuck Girven
On Sunday, January 12th at 1 pm there will be the first meeting for the public education committee at the Girvens'. All team members are invited to attend and participate. We will try to set up guidelines for "canned" presentations. After this we would make them available to team members who are asked to do a talk to a school or group. Some areas already discussed are

  1. What to do if you are lost,
  2. Layering system,
  3. What everyone going into the mountains should have (10 std. items).
If you have any other suggestions please show up. But also we hope you will be willing to help write up these presentations and figure out what handouts or displays need to be created. Educating the public is a vital roll in our SAR services.

Directions to our house: Go West on Montano from Coors Blvd. Turn South at Whiteman (1 block east of Unser, look for Silvan Learning Center), turn West at the second street which is Buenos Aires. Our house on the South side and the number is 6324 (white stucco with brown brick trim at the top).
On the Right Track by Mickey Jojola
Happy new year everyone! I hope that everyone had a good Christmas and a quite New Year.

The K-9 unit had to cancel the December training due to a conflict with travel plans for the holidays. The airport training will be scheduled for the near future. The reason we like to train at the airport is to get the dogs accustomed to large crowds, which simulate crowds at basecamp, and to gain exposure for the dogs and the team. The dogs wear their orange search vests while in the airport. In general we work on obedience such as heeling, sit stays, and down stays while people are walking through the buildings. This helps to strengthen the dog's overall self-confidence around large crowds.

On January 5th we had the "Training Game" at the Berry's house. More on this will be included in the next newsletter.

WARNING! Due to the recent rash of dog poisonings in the Three Gun Spring area it is recommended that you don't take your dogs to that area for at least the next 18 months. Contact Tijeras Rangers Station if you have any questions or see anything suspicious.
Member Spotlight: Bruce Berry
I was born in Albuquerque, NM and raised in Corrales, NM. I went to high school at West Mesa High, college at New Mexico State University and Graduate School at the University of New Mexico. I have been very active in outdoor activities including, hunting, hiking, backpacking, fishing, horseback riding, skiing, scuba diving, and of course search and rescue. I am married to a veterinarian and charter member of Cibola SAR and have no children.

In the early 80's my wife Mary and I had a big goofy blue tick hound by the name of Beauregard. We wanted to do something with him and I also needed and excuse to get away from work (I worked 10-12 hour days and only got paid for 8 hours). So we both joined the New Mexico Bloodhound Search & Rescue Team. I had trained bird dogs as a kid and I thought "How hard can it be to train a SAR dog?" We both trained hard and trained our dog hard. We all found out how hard it actually was to train and become a viable resource. We were called to work both search & rescue operations as well as felon cases for the sheriff and police departments. After a few years the team sort of fell apart, and we quit the team. We were without a SAR team for about six months, but we still wanted to do something like SAR and still trained our dog.

Two people that I worked with approached me and asked if I would be interested in forming a SAR team. Mary and I, with these other people met twice a month for about three months deciding what type of team should we form, and what characteristics that we were looking for in the team. Finally, after much work, six of us formed Cibola SAR (the six were; Mary Berry, Chip Roma, Jim and Melva Albone, Ann Blue and Bruce Berry). All of these people made great contributions to the team and worked (and played) hard to make Cibola SAR a reality. Then the problem of membership, orientation packets (member guide), recognition by the State of NM, possibly tax exempt status (that we now have), getting called on searches, building a reputation, and all sorts of things that nobody ever thought of. To aid this team in getting going Mary and I have served several times in all the offices; President, Vice-president, Secretary and Treasurer. I always dreamt of the day that our team would be 30 people so I didn t feel obligated to go on every search call. I thought that 10 people responding to a mission would be fantastic. I also envisioned a team made up of people that were more interested in others than themselves, gave unselfishly and unconditionally, held high standards, were not out for personal gain, maintained a professional attitude, were fun to be with, were willing to accept people and their contributions, whatever they might be, and were hard workers. There was a time that I thought that I was asking for the moon by having these visions. However, they have come true. Cibola SAR is made up of people that have these ideals and visions. It is a great team and I am proud to be a member.

As I continued in the SAR community, I ran for the New Mexico Emergency Services Council Board. I was elected to the Board and served four years. During three of those four years I planned and executed the May annual conference (now called ESCAPE), and two of those four years I was Chairman of the NMESC Board. I like to think that a lot of the things that are done at the ESCAPE conference, I actually started many years ago. Not that it had never been done before, but that it had never been done since I had been in Search & Rescue (i.e. equipment sales, overlapping board member terms, run the conference using ICS, out of town presenters, general meeting first, classes and playing the rest of the weekend, four different tracks instead of just one or two, etc). I can t take all the credit as there was a great Board of people serving with me to provide for the SAR community.

As Cibola SAR got larger and more people were taking on more of the duties, Mary and I were asked if we wanted to join Urban Search & Rescue. We both joined the New Mexico Urban Search & Rescue Task Force (there is only one in the State). For a few years the team was not that active, but all of a sudden things started happening. I was asked if I would be the Search Team Manager and serve on the steering committee. The development of this team has been exciting and trying at times. The team is doing well and we have made a number of advances. It is also nice to be associated with a team that does so much for others.

I continue with my efforts on both Cibola SAR and the Urban SAR teams as well as work a regular job at Sandia National Labs. I am an engineer there and have recently started a new job doing physical protection work at various sites. I live on three acres in the North Valley with my wife Mary and many pets and attempt to live life to the fullest.
The Bronze Boot Award
The Bronze Boot Award is to show appreciation for exceptional work for a team member or members. It also would be applicable for people who make outstanding blunders or have incredible mishaps (all in good fun)!

Web News by Mary Girven
Well, December was a rather uneventful month as far as the CSAR website is concerned (too many other things going on). The only real activity has been generating this newsletter. I have downloaded all of the software I need to start working on the Albuquerque ROS website (http://www.abq.com/csar). I don't anticipate it being very difficult to implement the functionality we already have on the development site at Sandia (http://bali.ms.sandia.gov/csar). What I really look forward to working on is adding new functionality, information, maybe video, animation, etc., all things I've been hesitant to do until I can bring the ABQ-ROS site up to speed. As always, please let me know if you have ideas on how to make our website better!
NMESC Notes by John Mindock
Registration forms for the Winter Skills Training, Feb. 15/16 are available from John Mindock. Note - the Mt. Taylor Quad is the 15th. The ESCAPE 97 will be at Bonita Park in Ruidoso, May 9/10/11. John will provide registration forms as soon as they become available. Contact Mickey or John if you'd like to help with the ESCAPE, either pre-event or on-site.
This Month's Feature Articles:
  • If you can walk, you can snowshoe
  • Hike of the Month
  • 1996 Statistics

  • If you can walk, you can snowshoe from Backpacker Magazine, 10/94
    How to climb, traverse hills, descend, and get up when you fall down

    There isn't much mystery to showshoeing. First, go out and shuffle along on flat ground because it's the best way to become comfortable with your shoes and the initially awkward showshoe stride.

    And then, after you've mastered level terrain, you'll no doubt set your sights on higher ground. The following techniques will help you get across those ice-glazed hillsides or up slopes that are piled high with windblown powder.


    Climbing Traversing Breaking Trail
    Even a dog is smart enough to follow someone who's breaking trail, but it's surprising how many people insist on bulling through untracked snow until they're sweat-soaked and exhausted. Trade off the lead so no one bears the brunt of trailsetting. When you're first in line, remember that you're making tracks for everyone else, so craft them carefully on ascents and traverses.

    You're bound to take a tumble or two, especially on challenging terrain. When you do, get your feet under you, shed your pack if you need to, roll onto your side, pull your knees up to your chest, and heave upright one leg at a time.

    Ski poles help considerably in deep snow. Place both poles on the snow in an "X" formation and press down in the middle. -- Rob Burbank

    Hike of the Month by John Mindock
    We're reviving the HOM program that had been previously inaugurated (then suspended) a while back. The purposes for the HOM are: Physical Fitness, Trail Knowledge, Gear/Clothing Usage, and Camaraderie.

    In order to negate the need for coordination and multiple phone calls, there will be two pre-defined date/times when members can meet others at the trailhead. These will always be the fourth Saturday and Sunday, 0900, unless otherwise noted in the Newsletter. All members are encouraged to take the hike, either at one of the pre-defined occasions or anytime during the month. To make this more of a training than simply a hike, always carry your search pack, readied for a mission in the area. Also, rehearse with your GPS, identify potential LZ's, notice spur trails and trail junctions, envision potential evacuation strategies and routes, and practice with your map/compass. In addition, look for places that might confuse you on the return trip, and memorize features that will help you find the route back. (On a mission, we'd use trail tape, but don't do that on the HOM.)

    Rather than list the common hazards in describing each HOM, I'll only list the unusual ones in that column. In the Sandias/Manzanos, the following hazards are always to be respected: bears, cougars, snakes, loose/falling/thrown/kicked rocks, low-hanging branches, off-leash dogs (don't worry, they're friendly), and lack of water. In addition, swiftly-changing weather is not unusual.

    Since the HOM is a training, albeit informal, it will appear in the Training Officer's column. Also, since this is sponsored by the team, no minor children nor non-SAR dogs are allowed at the pre-defined occasions. Note: we can use the 800 MHz radios and 155.265 on trainings, so carry radios if you have them. Finally, the estimated hiking time will be calculated as follows: myself, walking alone with full search pack, without stops. The time with a group can be as much as 30% longer. Be sure to include that extended timeframe into your trekking estimates.

    1996 Statistics by John Mindock
    MISSIONS BY MONTH (1996/1995) 
    JAN:1/3,         FEB:1/1,    MAR:3/3,   APR:3/1,    MAY:3/8,    JUN:11/3,
    JUL:5/5,         AUG:6/2,    SEP:5/2,   OCT:5/5,    NOV:5/6,    DEC:2/3 
    MISSIONS BY TYPE (1996/1995) 
    9/7     LITTER EVACS     
    MISSIONS BY DISTRICT (1996/1995)
    15/6    OTHERS
    ATTENDANCE      AVERAGE     HIGH                LOW
    MEETINGS(12)        28      MAY (32)            APR (24)    
    **TRAININGS (13)    17      JUL (31) - UTM      DEC(11) - TURKEY CHLG. 
    MISSIONS (50)       10      04NOV(27) -DAVID C. N/A ***
    ESCAPE96 (21)   
        MEETING:    30+ (4),        25-29 (6),      <25 (2) 
        **TRAINING: 20+ (2),        16-19 (7),      <16 (4) 
        MISSION:    20+ (3),        10-19 (20),     5-9 (18),    <5 (9)
        MEETINGS:   10+ (13),       6-9 (17) ,   3-5 (12),   < 3 (20)
        *TRAININGS: 10+ (8),        6-9 (9),     3-5 (19),   < 3 (26) 
        MISSIONS:   25+ (6),        15-24 (4),   6-14 (18),  < 6 (34)
    Classified Ads (20 words maximum, no services)
    FOR SALE: One pair Extreme cross-country ski boots, men's 10 1/2. Call Randall Wahlert at 296-7709 if interested.
    Special Notes
    Special Thanks to Larry Golden for providing notebooks for the '97 Yearbooks. -- submitted by Chuck Girven

    The newsletter editors are looking for suggestions of feature articles for future issues. If you have any ideas, please let us know. Or if you know of another team that would like a copy, please give me the address. -- submitted by Chuck Girven
    This information was gathered from many sources and presents facts as we believe them to be true. This is not meant to be an official document, but a means to disseminate team information.