Lost and Found... the newsletter of Volume 3, Issue 9
10 September 1998
Editors: Tom Russo, Mike Dugger,
and Mickey Jojola

Cibola Search and Rescue
"That Others May Live..."
Top of the Hill Boots and Blisters Who's Who and New
Gearing Up Coming Attractions On the Right Track
Public Relations NMESC Notes Web News
Special Notes Disclaimer
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Top of the Hill by Larry Mervine
Have you looked at the calender lately? Winter is just around the corner. It's time to add extra clothing to our packs. Inexperienced hikers will dress for the warm day's temperature, not realizing that the days are shorter and the temperature can drop 30 to 40 degree once the sun has set. Personally for September and October my light weight polypropylene bottom and tops are replaced with expedition weight. Also add polartec pants to balance with polartec jacket already in my pack. For colder months of November, December, January and February a down jacket, wool balaclava, and mittens are added. Might also check your battery supply. The days are getting shorter and the nights longer.

It was reported last business meeting that the PR committee has elected to promote recruitment as their main focus. We lost a number of active member to other states. And some members left because their job commitment would not allow them the needed time to be active as Cibola members. We also have team members who are active in SAR activities outside of Cibola Search and Rescue. We have a member who was appointed to the SAR review board. One member is the chair-person for NMESC (New Mexico Emergency Services Council). We have two members who are PACE evaluators. The state certifications we all have taken. We also have one FC (field coordinator) and a few sections chiefs. These last two activities are part of ICS (incident command system); all searches in New Mexico are run by ICS.

To maintain our active SAR role in New Mexico search and Rescue and to increase mission attendence we need to recruit new members. If you see someone you do not know, introduce yourself and welcome them to our team.

See you out there. Back to Top
Boots and Blisters by Mike Dugger
Our last training and evaluation took place on Sunday, August 16, at Three-Gun trailhead. We started with an evaluation on land navigation, and then had a litter packaging training immediately afterward.

The land navigation evaluation was attended by Mary B., Jason M., and Don E. Gibson. Steve M. attended as an observer (always welcome), and Larry M. and Mike D. set up and conducted the evaluation. Unlike our last training on this topic where almost everyone had trouble identifying terrain features, the participants in this month's evaluation had no trouble with resectioning to locate their position on a map. This time, maps were provided that had the immeidate vicinity of the target location blocked out, so that it was difficult to use roads, trails, etc. to help locate position. Despite this, all the participants located their position to within 100 meters of the location determined by the evaluators. This "actual" position was determined by resectioning with many points, as well as verification by GPS with a long averaging cycle to help minimize selective availability errors. Participants also had no trouble following bearings between six points in the field. The one area that people had difficulty with this time was estimating distance between the points. This was included in the standard as an important skill, however, we rarely need to accurately estimate such short distances on a real mission. A couple of the participants had to repeat this part of the excercise to determine the distances to within 25% of the actual distance (measured with a rolling tape), per our standard. Their being such good sports about repeating this part of the excercise is greatly appreciated! They all passed, and their evaluation documentation has been entered in the team archive. The fact that the standard has caused us to think more carefully about distances when we are in the field is a good thing. The present requirement is a bit artificial, though, compared to needs on a mission. We should probably have another look at this part of the standard, to see if we can come up with a better way of doing it that looks more like the real thing. This is all part of the fine tuning we knew would be required when we decided to implement the standard. If you have any suggestions, please speak up!

Since I have heard a few questions about it, I thought I would remind everyone that all the documentation pertaining to standards is available on the team web page (and, by the way, they have been since the first time we conducted each evaluation). This includes instructions for evaluators to use in conducting the evaluation, and the checklists used during the evaluation to document the demonstration of skills. Many training handouts and additional resources are available too, to help members master our minimum skill set. And yes, it is obvious that not everyone has access to the web. Everyone DOES get a newsletter, though, and will be assured by reading this article that one of the editors or evaluators would be delighted to provide them with a hard copy of any documents they wish to have from the team web site.

The litter training began right after the evaluation. Several more members came out for this training, and everyone got a chance to practise all parts of the packaging and hauling techniques. Practise makes perfect, and our general level of proficiency on ALL the skills in the standard has increased dramatically from just one year ago.
by Larry Mervine
Starting this month we will reinstate the tradition of having a presentation of some sort at 6:30 before the regular business meeting. None of these presentations will count as a "training" with respect to the two-trainings-per-six-months requirement, but all are encouraged to attend.

Sept 10thClothing
Oct 9thRick Goodman (standards, insurance, Liability and questions)
Nov. 12 Hypothermia
Dec. 10 Clue Awareness

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Who's Who and New by Mickey Jojola
I would like to take the opportunity to welcome out newest prospective member Steve Meserole to the team. Steve has shown a lot of interest and will be a valuable member to our team. Welcome, Steve. For those prospective members who have yet to take the PACE Certification here is your chance. On September 19 at the Philmont Scout Ranch starting at approximately 0900 there will be another of many PACE exams for state certification (as well as CSAR). Anyone interested will need to call the PACE hotline ((505) 388-5493) to reserve a spot. Everyone should already have all the necessary materials to pass this exam as well at the equipment (as it is also required by CSAR!). If anyone is in need of the test materials please give me a call (before 2200). Back to Top
Gearing Up by Mike Dugger
OK kids. I know you have been waiting for this...and now they're here! For your dining pleasure (on missions), direct from the Long Life Food Depot in Richmond, Indiana, MRE entrees and sides. Or, as I like to call them, MRE-lets. This turned out to be a much more practical approach to emergency mission food than buying entire MREs, which are more expensive and contain a lot of stuff we carry anyway, like matches, spoon, and T-P. I've tried to obtain enough variety to appeal to many appetites. For example, we have spinach ravioletti, beef stew, chicken with rice, buttered noodles, peas, corn, and pound cake, to name a few. All with 5+ years of storage life at ambient temperature. Yum, yum. I also bought some heaters so you don't have to use the Wheezer method (don't ask) to have a warm meal on a cold night.

I already keep in supply things like trail tape and AA batteries. If you have any other suggestions for SAR-specific "consummable" gear that the team should provide to its members, please let me know. Back to Top
Coming Attractions by Tom Russo
David Dixon has been assembling a feature article on the SAR Pack for our edification and enlightenment. Way to go, David! That's the spirit: find a topic near and dear to your heart, write about it, and share the wisdom with your collegues. I expect that David's article will be in next month's newsletter, and I encourage you all to follow his example. I know that there are some dormant pens out there with pent-up words of wisdom screaming to be released. We can use feature articles, minilessons and hikes-of-the-month. Contact me if you have ideas for one and are willing to write it. By the way, as our regular contributors are no doubt aware by now (ahem) the deadline for newsletter submissions is 9pm on the Thursday prior to the regular team meeting, but I prefer to receive them earlier to give me time to do those niggling little things that editors tend to do. Back to Top
Public Relations by Susan Corban
The PR committee has launched a recruitment drive to bring new members to Cibola. We'll be conducting presentations anywhere we can squeeze in the door. We'll target outdoor organizations, Open Space and Forest Service programs, and businesses that cater to people who are active in the outdoors. We've also printed copies of a poster promoting Cibola and ordered a banner with the team name for use at presenations and display tables.

While recruitment is our priority, we've been contacted to give educational presentations at several schools and community organizations. Mary Berry was the guest speaker at the Kiwanis Club breakfast meeting on September 3rd. We will actively pursue more educational programs once our recruitment task has succeeded in building the team roster. Thanks to David Dixon, Don Gibson, Larry Mervine, Tom Russo and Melissa Smith, for pitching in with PR committee work. Back to Top
On the Right Track by Mary Berry
Recently, the canine unit has been re-evaluating our air-scent mission ready standards. The original standards were put together by the canine committee, comprised of Mickey Jojola, Jim Calahan, Catherine Wambach, and myself as dog handlers. Standards used by other teams around the country were evaluated, and as you can imagine, they varied tremendously. We developed some standards that were definitely on the high end of those we were comparing. Well, it's been a little over a year now, and we have decided that our air-scent dog standard needs some work.

One of the primary problems is that the search area is 160 acres, with a time limit of 4 hours. The canine unit has found that, in our typical terrain, it is not possible to cover the area in that amount of time without having significant "holes". Also, if the dog indicates scent in an area, but then loses it, there is not enough time to thoroughly re-cover that area.

Another problem has been that it is IMPOSSIBLE to find a 160-acre area that is uncontaminated with other human scent, ie. Innocent bystanders such as hikers, mountain bikers, etc. For an air-scent dog, the search area really needs to be free of all human scent except for the subject.

So, as a result, rather than increasing the testing time, we decided to try decreasing the search area. On Sunday, August 30, we tried a "mock" test for Mickey and "Jake", using a 40 acre testing area. We drove down David Canyon all the way to the Isleta Indian Reservation boundary line to hopefully be far enough away from any other people. Mickey and "Jake" did fantastic, finding the subject in only 15 minutes. In some ways, this was a bad thing, as it didn't give "Jake" the long training problem we had planned. "Jake" was partly able to do such a fast job because of the search plan that Mickey used (good search plan!) After the find was made, we decided to continue searching the area as if the dog were still working. The search area was very dense in some areas with Scrub Oak, and a moderately steep hill was in the center of the area. We found that we covered the area pretty well, with a few small "holes" in 2 hours.

To further evaluate, we plan to do the same exercise in a few other areas before changing the standard. For now, it looks like we will not only be reducing the search area, but also the search time from 4 hours to 3 (?)

After the search problem exercise, we went out to breakfast at the Ponderosa restaurant. Special thanks to new prospective members Steve Meserole, for hiding for Mickey and "Jake", and Terri Prichtel for joining us. Anyone is always welcome to come with us on trainings!!!

Mickey and I are still tentatively planning to have our annual fall retreat. A date has not yet been set. We would like to do it, but won't if it's just the two of us. Anyone interested??? Back to Top
Web News by Tom Russo
I would like to remind everyone that training resources exist on the website; there are handouts for some past trainings, links to resources provided by other organizations, and as Mike pointed out above, evaluation checklists that are used during evaluations for our certification program. Members are encouraged to download these items to assist in preparing for certification. Now I am aware that not every Cibola member has entered the 1990's yet, and some folks can't get at the Web. If there is anyone in that set who needs to get at the website, many of us who do have access would be delighted to help you get the information you seek.

Instructors: if you wish to develop a training handout for trainings you wish to lead, I can help you turn it into a web resource. This has the advantages of making the handout available before you go out and Xerox it, possibly decreasing the number of copies you have to make, makes it part of the team's training archive, and it looks neat, too.

Remember to check out our "Other Interesting Web Sites" page now and then. There are some great links to other teams, especially those with training resources. David Dixon has been looking around for some more sites, so look for this page to grow soon. Back to Top
NMESC Notes by Nancy O'Neill
The '99 ESCAPE is shaping-up with Soccoro in the lead position. They have offered us the best facilities and prices, so far. If you would like to help me in anyway, shape, or form (i.e. instructors), please let me know.

The Mock Search at Philmont on September 19th and 20th is still on. There will also be a PACE Evaluation happening on Saturday; for more information on this, call the PACE hotline at 505-388-5493. Kay Sinclair is still taking reservations for the Mock Search, so if you'd like to see Northern NM at its best, call her between the hours of 9am-9pm; contact me or Mickey if you need her phone number. Back to Top
Special Notes
Remember that CSAR requires PACE certification for field responders. There are two evaluation sessions coming up. You must call the PACE hotline at (505) 388-5493 to register and receive your study materials. -- submitted by Tom Russo

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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.