Volume 3, Issue 6
11 June 1998
and Mickey Jojola
"That Others May Live..."
Search and Rescue is not the place for egotists or those weak in character, nor it is the place for those seeking popularity and fame. Rather, Search and Rescue is for those who have a unique desire to help others in need regardless of personal gain. With this in mind I thank you for giving me the opportunity to lead Cibola Search and Rescue. I hope to live up to the above philosophy. Below I listed the goals for the next six months. With your help we can achieve them.
|Top of the Hill
||by Larry Mervine
I am committed to increasing our level of professionalism. To be a professional SAR person, we must be proficient and competent in what we do. To this end we will continue the implementation and improvement of our certification program.
To help new members who join our team and to remind us old members how we operate, the membership guide will be complete and passed out by the end of this summer.
During the last four years many people have attended team meetings. Some have joined and now are gone. We need to focus on a continous recruitment program of serious professional members. I ask for your support when recruitment activities are planned.
Last and so far this year there has been a decrease in missions. It is important that each member has their own physical fitness program. Maintaining a regular program of physical conditioning will give you a head start toward coping with stressful emergencies in hostile enviroments. Rare is the search done in perfect conditions. Also, worse than being in poor physical condition during a search and rescue mission or survival situation is not realizing that you are unfit. Maintaining a regular physical program you will know the limits of your physical condition.
See you out there.
The training event for June will be a mock search. The event will begin at 8 am on June 14, at the Cedro Peak campgrounds. Directions to training base are: from the 4-way stop in Tijeras at old US 66 and NM 14, go south on old NM 14 to Juan Tomas road. Turn left on Juan Tomas, and then another left at the "y" in the road to the campground. We will begin at the parking area just beyond the campground.
|Boots and Blisters
||by Mike Dugger
Our scheduled training topic for June is search techniques, so this will be factored into the search scenario. Please bring your usual search pack, and be prepared for anything, including hasty search and litter evacuation. Please arrive 15 minutes before the training so that you can get your gear ready and we can begin the training on time. Please note that those who arrive more than 15 minutes late for the training will not recieve credit for the training.
Ed Note: This is a rerun of the September 1997 HOM, as there was
nobody available to write a new one for us this month. Members
willing to write one of these for future hikes of the month are
encouraged to contact the newsletter editors.
On the way to the trailhead, you'll pass Quail Meadow Road. FYI - this
is an alternate route to the Strip-mine Trail (not a part of this
hike). You'll also pass the Agua Sarca trailhead, which is also not
part of this hike, but a likely search route for missions in this
Start by going south from the parking lot. A few feet out, there will
be a gray wilderness sign. This is the bottom of the Del Orno route,
which meets the North Crest trail. This route is very steep and
rugged, and has some unsafe conditions. I have excluded it from this
hike, but it would be a likely assignment for a search. Proceed east
along the well-defined North Crest trail. Along the way be sure to
pause and enjoy the scenic vistas to the west, north, and east. About
1.5 hours out, at (369.6, 3905.1) you should see the top of the Del
Orno route as it drops into the arroyo on your right. An hour later
you'll be at the junction with the Penasco Blanca trail (368.9,
3902.8). If you wish, go down that trail a few minutes and you'll
see the white cliff formation that gives this its name. (It's also
called the 'Great Wall of China'). Then return the way you came.
Incidentally, many people drink the spring water near the parking lot.
Still it would be advisable to treat it first, as you should treat any
water in the Sandias.
|Hike of the Month||Tunnel Springs and North Crest Trail
||0730, Jun 27/28, 1998\01998|
|Trailhead: Tunnel Springs near Placitas|
|R.T. Distance: 10 miles||Elevation Min/Max: 6200/8600|
|Hiking Time 5 hours||Hazards: The Usual|
|Topo Maps: USFS map of the Sandias|
||by John Mindock and Mike Dugger
ORIENTEERING - PART 3
This lesson will describe an orienteering compass and its use in the field.
Compasses In General
The earth has a magnetic field surrounding it. In the Northern Hemisphere, a
magnetized needle will point to the Magnetic North Pole, which is somewhere in
Canada above the Great Lakes. A compass uses that phenomenon to help us
determine our direction of travel (heading), as well as directions to visible
landmarks (bearings). There are many types of compass, ranging from the prizes
in cereal boxes to scientific gyroscopic devices. The orienteering compass is
recognizable because it has a rotatable bezel, which alleviates the need to
have the map facing the exact direction as the land it portrays.
The Base Of An Orienteering Compass
The base of an orienteering compass is a rectangular piece of transparent
plastic. On the ends and sides, there are often scales of inches, miles,
etc. that relate to the common scales on maps. A certain distance on the map
is equivalent to an actual distance on land as determined by the scales. On
the base is an arrow, called the direction of travel arrow or
DOT. The DOT is used to depict where you are going or where you are pointing
The Bezel (Dial)
This is a raised circular transparent mechanism having marks on the edge
representing the number of degrees. Inside its perimeter is a set of parallel
lines. The middle line among these has some sort of arrow, pointing to the
north mark on the edge. Let's call the middle arrow the northward
arrow. Inside the bezel is the magnetic needle, with one end which will point
to Magnetic North. It is suspended at the center and is usually balanced so it
doesn't rub against the bezel. The bezel is also usually filled with a liquid
to damp the motion of the needle, so that it settles quickly after some
Holding A Compass
The proper technique for holding a compass depends upon what type of compass
you have. For an orienteering compass without fold-up mirror or any other sort
of sighting mechanism, the best method is to place your elbows comfortably at
your sides, and keep them against your sides. Raise your forearms to the
horizontal position, and lay the compass in one hand, supporting that hand
with the other. Make sure to hold the compass squarely, so that the DOT points
directly away from you. In order to get consistent readings from the compass,
it is important to re-create this position faithfully. Turn your whole body to
modify the direction you are pointing, rather than moving your hands or
arms. For obvious reasons, you need to keep metal objects such as belt
buckles, knives, and pens away from the compass. This may require that you
extend your arms to hold the compass (I guess you could take your belt off,
but that has some disadvantages).
A sighting compass must be held up to your eye so that you may look thorough
it. Some of these have a folding cover with a mirror on the inside. When used,
the cover is opened to tilt above the bezel, and there is a notch on the cover
for sighting. The idea is to look at your target through the sighting notch,
and use the mirror to see when the magnetic needle is properly in place. Make
sure to hold it as level as possible so the needle doesn't drag, and that any
alignment marks such as lines on the mirror or notches on the bezel are
properly lined up.
Calculating A Heading Or A Bearing
Point the DOT arrow in the direction you are travelling. Twist the bezel
until the red portion of the magnetic needle is lined up with the northward
arrow of the bezel. Your heading is the reading of degrees on the bezel's edge
that lines up with the DOT arrow, or a tic mark on the bezel's edge. The word
bearing is used to describe the direction to a landmark, which may
not be the same as your heading, which is the direction you are actually
Calculating A Back Bearing
Since a bearing is the direction from you to some landmark, a back
bearing is the direction from the landmark back to you. It is easily
determined from your bearing by simply adding or subtracting 180
degrees. Depending on what's comfortable for you, an alternative way to
determine back bearing is to simply use the bezel. Twist the bezel until the
southward-pointing end of the magnetic needle (usually black or white) is line
up with the northward arrow of the bezel. The reading which is now indicated
by the arrow or tic mark on the bezel is the back bearing.
Deviation in readings can come from multiple sources, even in the absence of
error-inducing metals in the environment. The act of pointing the DOT arrow at
the landmark, the slight variation of the magnetic needle when lining it up
with the northward arrow, and the actual reading of the small numbers on the
bezel are the most obvious factors. It is not uncommon to notice differences
of five degrees between individuals who are comparing readings. The
combination of a quality compass, careful technique, and some practice can
improve the accuracy of readings.
EXERCISES - ORIENTEERING PART 3
- What sorts of markings are found on the base of an orienteering compass?
- What sorts of markings are found on/in the bezel of an orienteering compass?
- What is the meaning of the phrase back bearing?
- What are some causes of variations in readings?
FIELD EXERCISES - ORIENTEERING PART 3
- Use your orienteering compass to take bearings and back bearings on
various landmarks. Try to look in all quadrants (0 - 90, 91 - 180, etc.). Do
each set three times and note any variations in readings.
- Here's a simple test to get a feel for the combination of inaccuracies in
your compass, your ability to read it, and how accurately you can pace off
distances. The basic idea is to walk an equilateral triangle. This triangle
has all sides of equal length, and 60 degree internal angles. In an open area,
mark your starting point with something, like a piece of trail tape. Take a
bearing on a distant landmark and walk that bearing, while counting
paces. After some distance, say 100 steps, stop and take another bearing 120
degrees from your initial bearing (this is the external angle on the
equilateral triangle). Walk the new bearing for the same number of steps you
did the first time. Then, take a final bearing 120 degrees from the one you
were just walking. Walk along this final bearing for the same number of steps
as in the first two legs. Make sure to turn the same direction that you did
the first time, or you will be walking away from your starting point. After
you have paced off the proper number of steps, how far do you end up from your
Well it may be a little late but give Don E. Gibson a big hand, since he has made the cut (so to speak). Don E. is our newest active member. Congrats Don E. And now on to other business...
|Who's Who and New
||by Mickey Jojola
We are at the end of another 6 month period. If you haven't completed your 2 trainings yet then you have one last chance on June 14th. Letters will be going out (you should have received them before the meeting) informing people of their call-out status. If you have any questions please feel free to give me a call.
At this time there are no new prospective members ready for orientation. If there is anyone ready for orientation give me a call and I will be glad to get on it.
Don Gibson, Mickey Jojola, Jake and Susan Corban met with third, fourth
and fifth graders on Thursday, April 30 at the Edmund Ross Elementary
School in northeast Albuquerque. These kids had a great time and so did
the presenters. In two separate presentations, they learned what to do to
keep from getting lost in the first place. Staying where they can see
others, hiking between grown-ups, and playing within parent-designated
boundaries (this big rock, those trees) were the main points of staying
found. The next message to the kids was to stay put if they find
themselves lost or alone. They learned what cool gear to carry in their
packs each and every time they go out camping or hiking.
||by Susan Corban
While we entertained them with stories, Jake was their favorite presenter.
He barked, wagged, and modeled his orange-wear for the kids. They know
that dogs and people in uniform are searchers and "safe strangers." We
fielded questions from the predictable to the weird. What do you do when
you wake up and there are five snakes in your sleeping bag? Personally,
I'd freak out and go find a bear to hug . . . . Seriously, we did find
that many of the kids had been given misinformation and it was good to set
the record straight. Now that we've tried this, we all said it would be
fun to do again.
If you have a school connection or some scouts or other kids in your
social network, let's arrange another visit. If anyone is interested in
joining these efforts, the presenation outline is all on paper.
Just a quick update on upcoming events with the ESC. There will be a mock search up at Philmont in October, so this is your chance to see if they will make the grade as far as future ESCAPEs. There will also be a helicopter school in either October or November. We look forward to seeing you at these functions. We are having an ESCAPE debreif on June 20 at the Tijeras Sheriff's office. If you have any suggestions or comments please feel free to contact me and I will relay the information.
||by Mickey Jojola
1992 Ford Explorer XL, 5-speed, cruise, 4WD, AC, seat covers, good condition, ~85K miles. Original owner. $9800. Contact John Stephens, 323-9523.
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.
||(20 words maximum, no services)