Volume 3, Issue 4
9 April 1998
and Mickey Jojola
"That Others May Live..."
|Top of the Hill
||by John Mindock
Typical mission: Your team walks up a trail for 2 hours. Some other team finds the subject. Your team goes home. No big deal.
So why learn Orienteering, Litter Skills, and Search Techniques? And the skills in the PACE Field Certification? And why purchase and lug around so much clothing/gear?
- Ladrones: no trails, thunderstorms in progress.
- Pecos: 16 hours in deep snow. Trails obliterated. Hypothermia-inducing temperatures.
- Rio Puerco: 3 days in hasty and area search modes over vast territory.
- Sandias: Overnight in snow and cold with hypothermic subject.
- Sandias: Litter evac of climber with severed artery.
On missions like those, YOU could be the critical resource. The 'hero' who saves the subject. The one whose skills decide the happy outcome.
On the other hand, maybe YOU are the one who didn't find the subject because you didn't understand how to perform the proper search techniques. Or YOU didn't feel like carrying the proper gear/clothing so your team cut short their assignment when the weather went sour. Or YOU couldn't remember how to attach a haul line to the litter, so time was wasted while the subject's condition worsened. Or YOU did not cover your assigned search area because you couldn't read the map properly.
Via a lot of time/effort from the instructors, the team presents monthly trainings covering the gamut of SAR topics. They are offered so you can perform competently during the missions where real SAR skills are needed. It is up to you, per your claim to be a SAR para-professional, to learn and practice those skills. It's the time to struggle with the concepts, learn by doing, perhaps failing, subsequently improving, re-trying, etc.
But our training attendance always consists of a core group of 'the same old' individuals plus a small subset of other members of the team. It's time to change that - let's see YOU out there at the majority of the monthly trainings. If you think this is too much to expect of a volunteer, or your lifestyle prevents you from giving the time commitment, maybe SAR is not an appropriate activity for you.
Meet to carpool at Fire Station on So. 14 (marked route 337). The
fire station is 9.7 miles south on route 337 (south 14) from I-40 exit
Leave a car at the Ox Canyon Trailhead along the dirt road, then drive
second car back to Red Canyon Campground--if you choose, to save time
walking back on the dirt road. This is the only way to make a loop
in the area. Saves half an hour. Start up Red Canyon Trail from far
of campground (trail 89). Trail is called Canon Colorado on some maps.
First 1.75 mi follow riparian canyon bottom, a few small waterfalls.
1.75 mi trail crosses out of drainage onto ridge in ponderosa and fir
forest. Opens from forest to meadow and aspen glades near crest
Views to east and west are spectacular. South on Manzano Crest Trail
2 miles to Manzano Peak takes you past Ox Canyon Trail (190) and
Mill Trail (80) where they meet the crest trail. Keep going to short
trail taking you to the top of Manzano Peak (10,098). Return to Crest
Trail and backtrack north to Ox Canyon trail and descend 3 miles to Ox
Canyon Trailhead. Walk back on the road or drive back to the Red
|Hike of the Month||Manzano Peak via Red Canyon & Ox Canyon Loop||0800, Apr 25/26, 1998|
|Trailhead: Red Canyon Campground. Exit 175 (Tijeras, Cedar Crest) from I-40, south on 337 (south 14) to SH 55, right (west) on 55 to the town of Manzano, Forest Road 253 6 miles to Red Canyon Campground. Trailhead at the far end of the campground.|
|R.T. Distance: 9 miles||Elevation Min/Max: 8000/10,098|
|Hiking Time 4 hours||Hazards: I hiked this in a blizzard with lightning a couple of years ago in May when it had been 95 degrees in Abq the preceding two weeks.|
|Topo Maps: USGS Capilla Peak, Manzano Peak, or Forest Service Manzano Mountain Wilderness Map|
Prior to 1995, one person - the Secretary/Treasurer - handled the duties of both positions. Since Cibola was a small team at that time, there was little need for organization of team documents. If a member became involved with a project, they created and maintained their own paperwork.
|Business as Usual
||by Terri Mindock
A drawback to this was that it sometimes proved difficult to track down particular paperwork, or even have it at all if a member quit the team. Also, members were quite often unaware of what paperwork did exist, so they were not able to utilize the information contained in it. There were many times the wheel was reinvented.
During 1994 Cibola began to experience a lot of changes and its business became more complex. It was apparent that the amount of duties for this Secretary/Treasurer would increase, so the team voted at the end of 1994 to split the position into two separate positions.
Another need that quickly became apparent was for all team documents to be maintained in one central location. Not only did it make it easier to track down paperwork, but it was important to retain team documents for current and future members to refer to and learn from. Thus, the new Secretary purchased a hanging-file box and folders, and this has become Cibola's Archive.
Since then, this system has been working very well. In order to maintain the integrity of this system it's important that team members submit their paperwork to me for archiving. Also, if a member has a need to look at a particular document, please let me know and I will be glad to send you a copy.
|Mini Lesson: Basic Knots -- Part 2
||by Tom Russo
In the last thrilling chapter I presented the basic overhand, double
overhand and figure 8 knots. In this part we'll combine those simple
knots to join two ropes together, make loops in lines, and attach
ropes to posts or other ropes.
The Double Overhand Bend
This bend is one you'll encounter often. It is used to join the ends
of a prussic loop, for example. To join two ropes with a double
overhand bend, tie an double overhand knot in one line (line "A")
around the standing part of the other line (line "B"):
Now tie an overhand knot in the line "B" around the standing part of
Dress up each knot and pull on both standing parts. When you're done
the two "X"s should mesh together, and on the other side the four
loops will look like a barrel:
The double overhand bend is also known as a "double fisherman's knot."
Some people appear to be in the habit of abbreviating its name to
"fisherman's knot," but this usage is not standard except among
climbers, and should be avoided. Although it is a bend, it is not
correct to call this knot a "fisherman's bend" because unfortunately
the nomenclature of knots is rooted in maritime use, and the name
"fisherman's bend" is already used for another knot which is not even
a bend, but rather a hitch used for attaching a rope to an anchor
ring. You will probably never encounter it.
The Overhand Bend
This bend is not widely used in SAR, but is a useful way to join two
ropes which may or may not be of the same diameter and you should be
familiar with it. It is also known as a "fisherman's knot" --- you
could use it to join fly line to a leader, for example.
To tie the overhand bend, follow the directions as for the double
overhand bend, but use an overhand knot instead of a double overhand
The Sheet Bend
Not often used by the SAR folk we'll deal with, the sheet bend can
also be used to join two ropes; there are some teams on the web that
advertise this as their preferred bend, but AMRC uses the figure 8
bend and the double overhand bend, so that's what we do. When tied
with one piece of rope and a line with an eye sewn in it it is
sometimes called a "Becket bend."
Here is a simple sheet bend:
This is the double sheet bend, which is somewhat stronger:
The Water Knot
The water knot is used to join two pieces of webbing. It is best
described as a rewoven overhand knot:
Tie an overhand knot in the first rope or piece webbing:
Weave the second piece along the path of the first, so that the bitter end of
each ends next to the standing part of the other:
Dress it up tight, and remember to back it up. Use an overhand knot
as backup; what you will have is a water knot backed up with a split
The overhand loop (overhand on a bight)
A simple way of forming a loop in a line is to form an overhand on a
bight. Grasp a bight and treat it as if the entire collection of rope
were a single line. Tie an overhand knot in this:
A disadvantage of the overhand loop is that it is difficult to untie
after a load has been applied to the loop.
The figure 8 loop (Figure 8 on a bight)
A better knot to use for forming a loop in a line is the figure 8 on a
bight. Grasp a bight and treat it as if the entire collection of rope
were a single line. Tie a figure 8 knot in this:
And don't forget to back it up:
The Prussic 3-wrap
This is used to fasten a length of 8mm cord to an 11mm rope. It can be used
as part of a belay system, a Z system, or just a tie-in point to attach your
harness to a safety rope. The hitch is quite simple to form, but be careful
to dress it up properly or it will not perform as required. It is best not to
let the double overhand bend which joins the ends of the loop be at the center
of the loop when you're done.
I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate both Ryan Jackson and
Jason Metzger on completing their orientation this month. Both look like
they will be strong additions to the CSAR organization. I look forward to
seeing these two in the field in the future. Lets make sure that they are
well taken care of in the field.
|Who's Who and New
||by Mickey Jojola
It's time to start planning for springtime PSAR demonstrations and speaking engagements. Starting with the April team meeting, the PR/PSAR committee will be meeting briefly each month at St. Chad's at 6pm, during the pre-meeting time that has been set aside. We'll go over the "canned" PSAR presentation, and discuss any speaking engagements we've been asked to give at the April committee meeting.
||by Tom Russo
In our constant quest for finding new helpers to help us train our search dogs, we have contacted the regional office of the Boy Scouts of America. Many dog units around the country use Explorer Scouts to help them train, which offers them community service hours as well as an introduction to SAR personnel. The initial response from their office was positive, but we are waiting to hear the final word.
|On the Right Track
||by Mary Berry
The Unit continues to train every week and alternate weekends. The scheduled trainings for April and May are as follows:
Apr 8, 5:30pm Building skills, Snow Park
Apr 15, 5:30pm Building skills, Snow Park
Apr 19, 10am Search skills, Tunnel Canyon
Apr 22, 5:30pm Building skills, Lynnwood Park
Apr 26, 10am Search skills, Pine Flats
Apr 29, 5:30pm Building skills, Lynnwood Park
May 6, 5:30 pm Building skills, Hoffman Park
May 9,10 ESCAPE, Ruidoso
May 13, 5:30 pm Building skills, Hoffman Park
May 20, 5:30 pm Building skills, Montgomery Park
May 24, 10 am Search skills, Placitas area
Looking ahead: Weekend retreat, September
If you have interest in attending any of these trainings, please contact either myself or Mickey Jojola for further details.
It's been a quiet month for web additions. I'm still hoping to get the mission logs and training logs database functions operational soon, but could use a hand. Please contact me if you can spare the time and have some database experience.
Just a quick reminder to send in your registration forms for the ESCAPE
before the deadline to insure you get the reduced rate. The NMESC looks
forward to seeing you at the 1998 ESCAPE!
||by Mickey Jojola
Here's some information on teams we are most likely to meet on a mission.
|Local and Regional Teams
||by John Mindock
Albuquerque Mountain Rescue Council (AMRC)
These are the people who perform technical rescue (mountain-climbing
techniques). They also have many medical personnel and a medical protocol to
work under. In addition, they provide ground searchers and 4-WD capability.
Many of them are Ham radio operators.
Amateur Radio Emergency Services (ARES)
This team works from home, providing logistics support and off-site
communications. They are all Ham radio operators, and are usually contacted
by the Incident Command staff to perform team callouts. They also monitor the
mission frequencies for communicating with personnel enroute. They also
perform other logistical assignments, such as calling the Red Cross.
New Mexico SAR Support (NMSARS)
This team specializes in on-site communications for missions. They also are
the ones who use sophisticated electronic equipment to search for the
Electronic Locator Transmitters (ELTs) of downed aircraft. Some of their
member perform ground search and many do 4-WD search. They also have a few
snowmobiles and ATV's. Many of the local Field Coordinators belong to this
team, as does Rick Goodman, the State SAR resource Officer.
St. John's College (Santa Fe)
This team has many college students and some older members. They provide
technical rescue, ground search, communications, ICS support, in-field
medical personnel, and 4-WD search capability. They are particularly adept at
handling missions in the Pecos in extreme winter conditions.
United World College (Las Vegas)
Another group of mostly college-age members. They specialize in ground search
This is a team of mostly college-age members, specializing in ground search
Bernalillo County Sheriff's Mounted SAR
This is a group of SAR horse owners. They are called for missions in terrain
that fits that capability.
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.
This group is most often called for horses, but they also have an ATV,
4-WD's, and some Incident Base support.