Lost and Found... the newsletter of Volume 2, Issue 11
13 November 1997
Editors: Tom Russo, Mike Dugger,
and Mickey Jojola

Cibola Search and Rescue
"That Others May Live..."
Top of the Hill
Mini Lesson
Public Relations
Web News
Classified Ads
Recent Missions
Boots and Blisters
Who's Who and New
On the Right Track
Special Notes
Business as Usual
Coming Attractions
Member Spotlight
Feature Article
Callout Information
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Top of the Hill by Mike Dugger
As the year draws to a close, I will describe where we are with respect to the goals we identified at the beginning of the year, and summarize the accomplishments of the current administration.

At the start of 1997, the New Mexico search and rescue field certification process was just getting ramped up, and I had hoped to have 90% of our active members certified by the end of the year. We made this certification a requirement for field assignment for active members effective December 31, 1997. I am happy to report that 94% of our active members are now certified. We also wanted to increase the number of licensed amateur radio operators on the team, and we almost doubled it, from 8 to 15. I had hoped to replace our outdated system of qualification codes this year too. Qualification codes have not been revisited as of this writing, but we have put in place a new training standard based on field qualification in skills that we use frequently on missions. This standard should allow us to greatly simplify the qualification code system, to identify people with special skills. We have trained on the use of our low angle gear, and I feel that the dozen or so members who participated in this training have a good grasp of how this equipment is used. We have a way to go before I would say that the team is generally proficient with the gear. However, we have worked on our litter packaging and hauling techniques several times, and I think we are all more proficient in this area than when we started the year. Finally, another goal was to create modules for SAR education as part of our preventative SAR, or "PSAR" program. A flexible presentation format has been created, targeting young adults, middle school kids, and people unfamiliar with SAR. This has been used in several presentations already, and appears to be very effective.

Although not explicitly stated as goals in January, there have been several other significant accomplishments during the year. We developed a list of minimum required gear and clothing, based on the state certification requirements, so that new members to CSAR know what minimum equipment they need and can prioritize those extra items that come in handy. Speaking of gear, our public relations officer lead a thorough analysis of some popular GPS receivers, documented their findings in a report, and negotiated a deal for us to acquire GPS receivers at a discount. Where they were once uncommon, there are now many GPS receivers on the team, allowing us to give coordinates of clues or our teams to incident command staff when requested. As mentioned above, we have adopted a training standard, which describes what skills we expect all field responders to possess, and how we determine that they have those skills. We have established a gear cache on the east side of the Sandia Mountains, and a gear deployment procedure to make sure the gear gets to every mission that CSAR is called for. The introduction and evaluation process for new members has been greatly improved by our membership officer, so that all candidates know exactly what is expected of them and their progress toward voting member status is made measurable. Finally, we have detailed the responsibilities of all officers and committee chairpeople required to keep the team running at its present level. This has yet to be accepted as policy, but at least the candidates for next year's administration have some idea of what is required to do the job.

These accomplishments were the product of a lot of hard work by many of our members, in addition to the team's elected representatives. I firmly believe that these actions will continue to improve our team by allowing us to field more skilled volunteers, provide a higher level of service to Incident Command, and directly benefit the subject. Everyone who helped make these accomplishments possible deserves a pat on the back. You have made a significant contribution to the continued success of CSAR. Back to Top
Boots and Blisters by Larry Mervine
On Saturday, October 11, Adam Slavin and Jeff Dohner led our low angle training to help us get familiar with our new gear. About 12 CSAR members attended, and got hands-on experience setting up and using anchors and both 1:1 and 3:1 raising/lowering systems. We are grateful to Adam and Jeff for taking time out of their Saturday to show us how this equipment is intended to be used. We intend to train regularly on low angle techniques in the future. This training will allow us to support technical rescues more efficiently in the future.

Our next training will be provided by Jim "J.D." Martin on Saturday, November 15, at 9:00 am at St. Chad's, on the topic of tracking. We will have a classroom session, followed by some practical experience identifying tracks.

Hike of the MonthThree-Gun Springs to South Sandia Peak0800, Nov 29/30, 1997
Trailhead: Three-Gun Springs. Old 66 East to Monticello Rd., north to Alegre, west to Siempre Verde, north to Tres Pistolas, north to trailhead.
R.T. Distance: 12 milesElevation Min/Max: 6400/9700
Hiking Time 6.0 hoursHazards: The Usual
Topo Maps: USFS map of the Sandias
The first two hours are on the 3-Gun Springs trail to the junction with the Embudito (this is called Oso Pass). Here, take the Embudito trail east for about 40 minutes to the unnamed trail on your left, marked by a rock cairn, that leads up to the peak. (369.79, 3986.42). 20 minutes later you will be on the peak, enjoying the 360-degree views. (369.72, 3987.15) Return the way you came. Note: weather and temperature conditions can be quite different at the peak compared to the trailhead - carry proper clothing.
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Business as Usual by John Mindock
A few weeks prior to the December meeting, each active member will receive a ballot for 1998 Officers via U.S. Mail. The nominees who have agreed to run for the Offices will be listed. If you cannot attend the December meeting, you can mail this as an absentee ballot to PO BOX 11756, ABQ 87192. Please write 'ballot' on the envelope so it won't be opened until the meeting. If you attend the meeting, bring the ballot. There will be extra ballots for those who forget theirs. If you don't vote, others will be choosing your team management for you.

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Mini Lesson by John Mindock

Clothing for SAR - PART 1

SAR personnel are expected to perform their duties in a variety of weather conditions and terrain/flora situations. The clothing they bring with them can enhance their safety and comfort, permitting them to remain in the elements for extended periods of time. With a proper choice of clothing for the situation, the SAR person can concentrate on his primary duties for the mission. This mini-lesson details some of the underlying concepts behind the choice of apparel.

Note - many missions do not challenge the SAR person's clothing choices, so it's not unusual for individuals to come through unscathed while wearing shorts, T-shirts, lightweight shoes, etc. This article is written with the tougher missions in mind.

Purposes of SAR Clothing
One duty of the clothing is to protect the SAR person from injury caused by external conditions. A second, and arguably the most important, is the ability to control body temperature. This paper will detail the first aspect, and a subsequent lesson will delve into the second.

Steep, rough, rocky trails require rugged footwear. Ankle sprains, abrasion injuries, and foot fatigue are consequences of less-than-adequate boots. Neither standard tennis shoes nor the popular canvas-sided high-top hiking shoes are up to the job. Sturdy leather boots are the only variety of footwear that can handle the rigors of SAR. Strong support for the ankle and a steel shank for the inner sole are proven assets in the field. In addition, leather upper panels help protect ankles from hazards that are encountered along the trail.

Inside the boots, it is imperative to avoid blisters, particularly near the back of the heel. The proven method is to wear two pair of socks. The inner pair is thin and slippery, usually polypro or a related synthetic, while the outer pair is a thick synthetic material specifically designed for hiking. These two layers slide on each other, mitigating friction between the boot and the skin of the foot. The outer layer also provides some padding for the pounding that occurs on the long hikes under heavy pack.

Wool socks are a popular choice as the outer layer, but they have a tendency to bunch up when wet, causing friction that may lead to blisters. Pre-hike application of coach's tape or moleskin to the heel area is an excellent idea.

Thorns, branches, cacti, abrasive rocks, and itchy weeds are common in SAR environments. Sturdy outer pants are essential to get through these hazards unharmed. The de facto choice of CSAR veterans are the mid-weight cotton/poly blend military BDU's. Cotton blue jeans would also serve the purpose, but they have temperature-control disadvantages that exclude them from the SAR wardrobe.

Gaiters not only protect from dew, etc., but can help alleviate damage from trail hazards. In addition, they can keep sand, dirt, and stickers from working their way into your boots or clogging up your laces.

Although many mountaineers wear shorts, they are not suitable for the rigors we might face, such as bushwhacking off-trail through heavy growth. In addition to the hazards mentioned above, you can add sunburn and insect stings in association with shorts.

The same sorts of things that assault your legs also attack your torso. A durable long-sleeved shirt is the only solution that is not an invitation to battle scars. Many CSAR members choose the orange cotton/poly blend work shirts for this purpose.

For reasons similar to those mentioned in the above sentences about shorts, a short-sleeved shirt is not recommended for SAR clothing. In warm weather, the long-sleeved cotton/poly blend shirt is often more comfortable than a cotton T-shirt because it tends not to be quite as clammy or clingy.

A standard baseball cap can help keep branches, needles, dirt, etc. off your head, as well as protect your face from sunburn. But a rock-climbing helmet is prudent whenever there is danger of falling rock, slapping branches, or head-high cholla. A bandanna covering the back of the neck will protect that exposed flesh from sunburn or chilling winds.

Leather gloves are requisite when handling the litter or ropes. In addition, you should wear them in areas that have substantial amounts of lava rock, thorns, cacti, etc.

Always wear rubber gloves anytime there is a chance of contacting pathogens. Although the flimsy ones used in hospitals sometimes suffice, they are prone to getting torn in the wilderness. It is acceptable to wear two pair of those, but a better choice is the hardy type used for dishwashing.

UV-blocking sunglasses with side protectors are the safest for your eyes in most conditions, both for glare and windblown dust/pollen. In blizzard conditions, ski goggles (anti-fog variety) can allow you to continue the mission where ordinary sunglasses fail. Sunglasses with dark lenses can do a lot to protect from snow blindness on bright winter days. A neckstrap to ensure that the glasses remain with you is a sound idea.

The orange shirts worn by CSAR serve more than the safety provisions detailed above. They also make the searcher more visible in forested situations. On a number of occasions, personnel from Incident Command and air resources have complimented the team on this increased visibility.

Self-Quiz on SAR Clothing - PART 1

  1. What are two major duties of SAR clothing?
  2. What benefits does sturdy footwear provide?
  3. Name some disadvantages that might arise from wearing shorts for SAR.
  4. What are some positive aspects of wearing a long-sleeved shirt, even in the summer?
  5. Under what conditions should a rock helmet be worn?
  6. When are rubber gloves imperative?
  7. Why would someone wear sunglasses in the winter?
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Who's Who and New by Bob Ulibarri
As Membership Officer, I have the responsibilty to review the phone tree periodically. I will be reviewing the current phone tree for consolidation and adjustment in the next month. If you have suggestions or ideas, please let me know. Also let me know if you would like to be considered for a position at the top of the phone tree.

The officers will be reviewing members' statistics as we come upon the end of the year. We only have one training left for 1997. Those of you who are unsure or know that you have not attended two trainings in the last six months consider this as your notice that we are coming up on our review period. Please make every effort to get your trainings done as soon as possible. If you have not attended two trainings in the past six months you will not be called for missions until you complete two trainings.

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Coming Attractions by Tom Russo
Nobody's on deck for next month's Member Spotlight. Anyone interested? Remember, too, that we have room for a feature article in every issue, and if you'd like to write one just let me know. Newsletter contributions are due on the first of the month.

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Public Relations by Mickey Jojola
Nothing submitted this month. Back to Top
On the Right Track by The Wayside
Nothing submitted this month. Back to Top
Member Spotlight: Terry Hardin
My name is Terry Hardin. I was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico. My wife, Melissa, is also a native of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Melissa's Grandfather started the town of Cline's Corner with the Chevron gas station, restaurant, and wrecker service back in the 1940's.

My father and mother (originally from the Ozark hills of Southern Missouri) were outdoors people so I spent many weekends tromping through the woods in Northern New Mexico next to the continental divide near Cuba and in South Central Colorado. Since then, I have always had a heart for the mountains and the wilderness.

I started rafting as a young kid in the late 1960's up on the Canjos River in Southern Colorado. In 1986 I joined the rafting company 'White Water Adventures'. This company is very unique; it is a Christian Rafting Ministry. We have a lot of fun taking people down the river while teaching them things that you learn from the river that you can apply to every day life. I quickly became a guide and later was certified by Rescue 3 as a 'Swift Water Rescue Technician I & II'. White Water Adventures grew over the years to become the second largest rafting company in New Mexico. After a 'staff only' run of 'The Box' at the peak run off of the season in 1995 (a very high water run off year), my wife is not as big of a fan of dangerous high water rafting as I am. We estimated the waves in the lower end of The Box to be some where from 15 to 20 feet high. I have also enjoyed many other rivers in Colorado (such as the Royal Gorge on the Arkansas River), rivers in Oregon, and rivers in Washington state.

I have always enjoyed the mountains. Over the years I have done a lot of hiking and backpacking. I have either hiked or backpacked into most of New Mexico's wildernesses. At one time, I lead small Christian singles' groups in backpacking adventures into the Jamez and the Pecos backcountry. I also enjoy mountain climbing and have been to the top of most of New Mexico's higher peaks, as well as a few in Colorado.

A friend of mine by the name of Allyn Anderson has been involved with SAR for many years. He would tell me about his work in SAR. Since I had a heart for the outdoors and a heart to help people (due to my Christian background), I would tell him that I wanted to get involved with SAR as soon as things slow down in my life. It happened. Things slowed down in the spring of 1991 when I tore out my knee. After having the knee rebuilt in surgery (with screws and all), I attended the State SAR Conference in Philmont. I meet Bruce Berry there and soon after that I became a member of Cibola Search and Rescue. Later in the summer of 1993 I married Melissa and then I took one year off from SAR work. In the summer of 1994 I was back again hiking down the trails for Cibola SAR.

I seem to keep too busy all of the time. There is never enough time in the day for work and hobbies. I have too many hobbies that I like to get involved with besides SAR. The hobbies range from high performance sports cars, to computers, to some unique but interesting ones such as researching the history, beliefs, and doctrines of different religious and cult groups and researching the scientific aspects of Evolutionism vs Creation Science.

I hope that this information about me helps you get to know me a little better and hopefully in the future I will get to know each of you better while on a training exercise or on a search. See you on the trail!

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Web News by Tom Russo
Our website continues to get hits from all over the world. But it's been a slow month as far as web development has been concerned. I would still like to extend the photo gallery, and am open to suggestions for new content. Get in touch with me if you have SAR pictures you'd like to share or content you'd like to see.

I have also developed a rudimentary mailing list facility for the csar@swcp.com mailing address which I plan to make available soon. It will forward any mail coded with a special keyword in the subject line to all CSAR members if and only if the sender is also a CSAR member --- nobody outside the team could use it. If you do not want your email address to be included in this list let me know.

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NMESC Notes by Mickey Jojola
Nothing submitted this month. Back to Top
Feature Articles by John Mindock

Feature Article 1: Mission Numbers

A Mission Number is more than an accounting mechanism - other mission-related processes are linked to it. When we attend a SAR event which has been assigned a Mission Number, we are protected by certain liability/injury insurance and laws. Reimbursement for fuel and use of the 155.160 radio frequency are other aspects.

Mission numbers are composed of three two-digit numbers (year, district, and sequence). The `district' portion can be one of the thirteen State Police (SP) Districts, or can be "00" or "20". An example of a mission number is "97-05-23", the 23rd mission in SP District 05 during calendar year 1997. Common districts for CSAR are "05 - Albuquerque area", "01 - Santa Fe area", "11 - Socorro and west", and "06 - Grants/Gallup area".

The three basic categories of events for which a state mission number may be assigned are as follows.

  1. State-approved training missions. (District = "00")
    There is an SOP in the State SAR Resource Office detailing the criteria which the training must meet. In general: it must be a realistic scenario, multiple SAR teams must be involved, there must be a Field Coordinator and an Area Commander. Reimbursement for fuel might not be included for this category.
  2. Missions with an aircraft as the subject. (District = "20")
    If an aircraft is known to be missing, or signals from an Electronic Location Transmitter (ELT) are heard, the mission is assigned a number with "20" as the `district'. Per current policy, an incident with a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) would also fall into this category. This mission number remains in effect even when the aircraft (or PLB, for that matter) is found (i.e., the number is not changed to represent the SP District of the find.)
  3. Standard SAR missions.
    A mission is started per the instructions an SP Officer who is qualified to be a Mission Initiator (MI). This designation is a result of specialized education he attended in addition to his law-enforcement duties. Each SP District has an MI on duty (or on call) at all times. When an event fits the circumstances where a SAR mission may be required, the MI for the appropriate District is contacted. Except in very unusual instances, the chosen District is the one that includes the subject's last known location. If the mission moves into another District as it progresses, the original mission number is still in effect.
Thanks to Rick Goodman, State SAR Resource Officer, for information used in this article.

Feature Article 2: Missions in Remote Areas -- October Through April

In the Sandias, we are seldom more than three hours from some sort of safe place where we can get out of the weather. Thus we can get by with a minimum of survival gear. This is often not the case in the western or northern NM mountains (including the Pecos area near Santa Fe). For missions in those areas, you must have enough clothing/gear/food/water to survive for at least 24 hours in the field, handling near-zero temperatures, deep snow, and high winds. You cannot count on lighting a fire and you may not be able to find the trail. Batteries need to be in prime condition, and backup equipment/clothing is a necessity.

Because you may get marooned in a blizzard where driving conditions deteriorate to impassable, your vehicle should contain enough of everything for 48 hours of confinement. As always, it is best to travel in a car caravan to remote missions. We generally meet at the Flying J on nine-mile hill (exit 153) for Grants/Gallup missions, the Los Lunas Diamond Shamrock (exit 203) for missions where we travel US 60 out of Socorro, and at the Bernallilo exit and/or the Triangle on north 14 for missions going north on I-25.

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Disclaimer the Editors
The information in this newsletter was gathered from many sources and presents facts as we believe them to be true. This newsletter is not meant to be an official document, but a means to disseminate team information.