Lost and Found... the newsletter of Volume 6, Issue 2
8 February 2001
Editors: Tom Russo, Mike Dugger,
and Susan Corban

Cibola Search and Rescue
"That Others May Live..."
Top of the Hill Boots and Blisters Business as Usual:Meeting Minutes
Pinching Pennies Who's Who and New Public Relations
Medical News Mini Lesson Web News
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Top of the Hill by Tom Russo , President
We certainly can't complain that we've had too many missions this past month. All the more reason for us to keep getting together and practicing all of our skills.

James has set up two great trainings this month, Search Techniques on Sunday the 11th of February, and a winter overnight bivy on Saturday, the 24th. Please show him your support and attend as many trainings as you can. While we only require two trainings every six months, the few subjects we do get asked to help deserve better than minimally practiced skills.

Jeff Phillips presented a "strawman" callout worksheet at our January meeting, and the team generally agreed that his suggestion should be implemented. I have written database programs to generate those worksheets, and we are now set to use the new worksheet instead of the old "deploying now, can deploy later, cannot deploy" scratch paper.

All pager 1, pager 2, and tops of trees are asked to keep a current worksheet on hand to record voicemail responses. We ought to have a brief review session soon on how to handle callouts as a team pager handler. In the meantime, please read the old "pager minilesson" on the team website, and familiarize yourself with the new callout worksheet. It can be accessed as "callout worksheet" under "member information" or from inside the "mission recording worksheet" page under "Pager Handler Info."

David began a nice tradition at our January meeting, asking all attendees to wear name tags. With so many new faces every month, it would be good to keep names attached to them on a regular basis. Part of what makes this team strong is the camaraderie we've worked so hard to build over the years. Thank you, David, for helping get our new members into that culture!

It has occasionally been mentioned at meetings that there has been a long-standing tradition of team members going out to dinner at a local restaurant after meetings. But we have seldom made a point of making sure that all members knew it was open to all. Starting in February, our final item of business before adjourning will be to choose a place to eat, and invite everyone, new and old. I hope this will tighten the bonds between our members even more.

Play safe! Back to Top
Boots and Blisters by James Newberry, Training Officer
Our January training on basic winter skills made me rethink what I carry in my pack. I hope it opened some other eyes as well. We had 17 hardy souls brave the elements to attend a cold and blustery training. Thanks Mike Dugger!

To carry the winter training theme one step further, the annual WINTER BIVY has finally been finalized. The snow was so good at the Ellis Trailhead area that I decided to move the bivy to there and to the weekend of Feb. 24th and 25th. (so our Quad athletes can come play too). Be prepared, it will be cold.

February's regularly scheduled training will be on Search Techniques, taught by Joyce Rumschlag at Bear canyon (east end of Spain), 9 am on the 11th. Joyce always does a bang-up job. I highly recommend that everyone attends. Its rumored that the little green pots might even show up.

Feb. 21st is the sign up date for the NMMC rock climbing school. See the NMMC website at http://www.swcp.com/climbrocks/ for more info.

The next evaluation will be search techniques on March 4, 2001 at Embudo trailhead at the East end of Indian School. 9 am Sharp!

March 10, 2001 training will be on litter handling, lead by Mickey Jojola. I'm told it will be one of the most interesting litter trainings Cibola has had in a while. Be there or be square!

One last Thought from the VP: "Live to Train - Train that others may live" Back to Top
Business as Usual:Meeting Minutes by Jeff Phillips, Secretary
What makes Cibola Search and Rescue a successful team? Random House defines a team as a number of persons associated in some joint action. We are over 40 persons associated in joint action but success is not part of the definition. Is mediocrity also an option?



Tom welcomed members: Dennis Barnhart, Michael Bridges, Doug Davenport, David Dixon, Paul Donovan, Paul Dressendorfer, Mike Dugger, Art Fischer, Tony Gaier, Danielle Groeling, Aaron Hall, Terry Hardin, Adam Hernandez, Charlie Irland, Mickey Jojola, Steve Kolk, Brian Lematta, Larry Mervine, Chris Murray, Andy Nielsen, Nancy O'Neill, Jeff Phillips, Ellie Robinson, Joyce Rumschlag, Tom Russo, John Tomlinson

Familiar faces: Curtis Crutcher, Erick Wankel, Lili Ziesmann, and Mike Ziesmann, and new attendees: Erik Boyer, Janice Campos, David Chapek, Larry Ebaugh, William Hawk, Steve Hochmann, Abel Madrid, and James B. Matteucci.

Tom then had everyone in attendance introduce themselves and tell their status on the team.


David explained that the use of orange name tags at the meeting was an attempt to increase members' knowledge of others on the team and would be used for a few months. David welcomed Danielle Groeling as the newest prospective member. He then identified the 5 newest active members; Michael Bridges, Steve Kolk, Doug Davenport, Steven Buckley and Ed Mighetto.

David reminded members of the 3-2-1 and certification requirements in order to become and remain active and field certified.


Jeff reminded members to sign in at all events and mentioned that anyone who attended the December meeting but was not listed in the minutes should let him know. Jeff reminded members to pass documents for the archives to him. Finally, Jeff announced plans to write letters of thanks from the team.


Brian reported that 2000 was a good year financially, the team was under budget for the year. He added that Mike had done a fantastic job with the books. Brian informed members that he was in the process of closing the old checking account.


No report as James was absent. A brief discussion of the Winter Skills training scheduled for Saturday, 13 January, 2001 ensued.


Brian announced the next meeting would occur on Sunday, 04 February, 2001 at 1300 at a place to be determined. He invited all to attend.


Chris mentioned that he has the usual perishable supplies available.


Larry announced the next PR meeting will be on Thursday, 25 January, 2001 at 1830 at the Frontier restaurant. He said discussion will be on successes and ideas for the new year.


Nancy reminded WFRs she needs a copy of NM EMS Cards for the database. SOAP note distribution and potential changes to the form was discussed. SOAP notes should be forwarded to Jeff, the Secretary, within 10 days of the mission. Jeff will handle the distribution of the form. Potential changes to the form included making it only two pages, adding a signature line, and adding a line for the name of the Incident Commander. Finally, the "NM DPS SAR Injury and Liability Release Report" form was discussed. Some WFRs have been required to complete this form and sign it at Incident Base. Nancy made a copy available for all WFRs so they can make themselves familiar with the form.


Mike Dugger reported that Robert Lathrop was no longer associated with SAR and therefore not the contact for PACE related information. The next PACE examination will be at the ESCAPE in May. We expect to have more information about ESCAPE at the next business meeting.


Pager duty. Tom is pager #1 and James is pager #2 for January. Tom reminded members to sign up for pager duties, we need Pager #1 for February. Chris Murray emphasized that members should not be discouraged from signing up for Pager #2 duty because of the responsibility for the gear cache.


David proposed an amendment to the member guide to increase the amount allowed to be spent without membership pre-approval. Passed unanimously.

Jeff presented a prototype Callout Worksheet as a potential solution to recent concerns. A web-based form will be created by Tom and should be tested for a few months.

Brian discussed by-laws in the context of reporting to the state corporation commission. Back to Top
Pinching Pennies by Brian Lematta, Treasurer
The team has received a most generous $500 contribution from Keith Hayes, the gentleman who injured himself during last December's Land Navigation training. In a letter to CSAR, Mr. Hayes has expressed his thanks and gratitude for the "extraordinary care and response" he received after his accident. He describes his litter evacuation as "an adventure to say the least," and says that he is indebted to "all of you who remained focused on my care and comfort as you fought the fatigue of a difficult trail through the trees and then the long haul of a heavy liter on the utility cut." He thanks many members by name, including Mickey, Dave, James, Nancy, Art, Jeff, Vicky, Tom and Paul.

Mr. Hayes suffered ligament damage to his ankle, and also fractured his fibula about two inches below the knee. A surgically placed screw should have been removed by the time this edition of Lost ... and Found is published, and he should be out of his cast and off crutches.

Mr. Hayes described his donation as "meager compared to the care and effort that everyone provided me." In fact, it may represent the single largest donation the team has ever received from a rescue subject. Tom Russo has written a thank you letter to Keith on behalf of the team. Both letters are available for you to read, if you like. Back to Top
Who's Who and New by David Dixon, Membership Officer
Ed Mighetto and Doug Davenport became our newest active members last month but didn't get mentioned in the newsletter. (They missed the deadline by a day). They got "patched" at the January meeting, but here's a big welcome for them in print. We hope to see both on missions and at trainings for a long time to come.

We are also losing three members who resigned in the last month: Steve Meserole, Brian Murray and Nancy O'Neill. We appreciate everything they did for Cibola and wish them well.

I would like to take my column space to review membership requirements. Of course all this is covered in the Member Guide, but hey, who has time to really read all that stuff and be ready for missions at the same time? So here's my part to keep you knowledgeable and up to date. Read carefully now and don't fall asleep.

After orientation you become a prospective member and have a minimum of six months and maximum of one year to complete the following: pass all 3 evaluations, attend 3 meetings and 2 trainings, and pass the PACE exam. Once you become a member, Cibola encourages you to follow our 3-2-1 guideline of 3 meetings, 2 trainings, and 1 mission every six months. But the important responsibilities are a minimum of 2 trainings every six months (Jan.-June, July-Dec.) and passing the 3 evaluations in the calendar year. You will become unavailable for missions (Not Avail.) if you do not attend the minimum 2 trainings in six months, and will lose your membership if you do not attend 2 more trainings in the next six month period. You become available again as soon as you attend those 2 trainings. To stay field certified for missions you must pass the 3 evaluations every calendar year. If you do not do so you are not field certified (NFC), and can not go into the field until you pass the evals you are missing. Active members that are available but NFC can still work incident base and get credit for missions by calling the hotline.

One of my jobs as membership officer is to keep track of all this member information and every six months do a review with the other officers. It's not fun to send out letters but that's the last step if some requirements are not met. I might call someone if they are in need of an upcoming event (to keep from sending you a letter!) but it is obviously your responsibility to keep yourself on track. In addition to knowing these membership requirements and keeping up with trainings and evaluations you can also check the online records in the "Members Only" area after an event to make sure you were given credit for it. Lastly, don't forget to sign in at trainings and make sure your sheet is turned in at evaluations. We all want to stay active and field ready for missions.

There will be a PACE exam at the Dona Ana Sheriff Grounds in Las Cruces on Saturday, February 24 at 10 a.m. That is the same day as our winter bivy but the exam may have precedence over a training for some of you. See or contact me as soon as possible if you are interested in attending. The next scheduled exam after that is at ESCAPE (the annual SAR conference) in May. Back to Top
Mini Lesson by David Dixon
Mini-Lesson: The SAR Pack - Part 2

The SAR Pack (Part 1) appeared as a Mini-Lesson in the October 1998 issue of the Cibola newsletter. It is available online in the non-member section. It was an overview of the SAR pack by season, contents, and included some pack tips. I encourage you to read it. In this part I will not talk about all the specific pack contents outlined in Part 1, but will expand on important aspects further gleaned from an additional two and a half years of search and rescue participation. As with the first article, the contents of the following are based on NM state requirements and Cibola SAR philosophy, but also the opinions of the author.

Pack Type

In Part 1, I covered the 2 types of backpacks, internal and external. Some of our members use an external but most of us consider the internal the better type for SAR use. Certainly much of our mission time is spent hiking on open trails, and externals are better for this. And they do keep you cooler. But internals fit closer, don't move around as much and as such are better suited to off-trail scrambling, ropes and litter hauling, the other things we end up doing.

Before buying a pack make sure you try it on loaded with enough weight and adjust it according to pack instructions. Most good packs are meant for a specific size torso. Measure yours (or have the store do it) and make sure the pack fits your size. The pack should ride and tighten well right on your hips. If you find one that seems right, wear it loaded around the store. If the torso doesn't feel right, if the straps don't work well, if the sternum strap is too high or other important structural needs keep it from fitting right put it down and keep looking. If the store doesn't know how to measure your torso, if they don't seem to know about packs or have a problem with you filling it and wearing it around, go to another store. Also, unless you've tried on the one you're ordering don't buy from mail order or online. You'll probably end up sending it back. A good pack should have all of the following: a wide, padded waist belt, padded back and shoulder straps, adjustable sternum strap, torso adjustments, compression straps, some external pockets and loops and be of strong nylon construction.

There are two types of internal packs to consider, top-loaders and panel-loaders. Both have advantages and disadvantages. Top loaders have one, deep main compartment which makes it a stronger pack but also makes accessing items on the bottom a pain. (To make this an easier task keep items you don't use as often on the bottom.) Panel loaders have a large main zipper in the front, which makes getting at pack contents easier. But the zipper weakens the pack and if it breaks in the field you're screwed. Make sure this type has compression straps to relieve tension on the zipper.

How much is a good pack? You don't need to spend hundreds. REI and other sources have fine quality internals for around $100. On the other hand you probably aren't going to find a decent pack for a lot less.

Pack Size and Weight

An appropriately supplied SAR pack should weigh between 25-40 pounds depending on the season. Any less and you're probably not fully equipped. Any more and you're probably taxing your ability. My moderate season pack is right at 30 pounds. I add 5-8 lbs. to that for my winter pack. This weight is not necessarily light for someone not used to carrying a pack. Cibola and NM state assumes you are in good shape and can handle the load. Also, you might leave room for the possibility of carrying needed supplies or water from incident base to the field.

A good pack size for this weight range is 2500-3500 cubic inches. You don't want a pack that is too small with stressed seams, nor one that weighs more with lots of extra room. I have an extended trip pack of 5200 cu. in. that is just too big even for all my incidental winter gear. If you bring a big pack as a backup, though, it could be used for carrying ropes, water or other supplies to a subject. But not if its loaded with too much weight.

Most sources will recommend a pack that is no more than 30% of your weight. But realize that is 66 lbs. for a 220 lb. man, a weight many big boys couldn't carry for miles, especially while handling a litter, even if they are in the best of shape.

Loading and Wearing your Pack

Heavy items should be evenly distributed over your waist and near your back. Keep less used items like first aid kit and bivy at the bottom of your pack with things you use all the time at the top. After you have loaded your pack, set it upright and shake it to settle the contents. If space is needed this will give you a little more room for that extra item. After that, tighten it down with your external compression straps to make it more compact. This will make it ride better and relieve stress on any zippers. Too put it on, raise it to your thigh and swing it onto your shoulders, tighten shoulder straps first to raise the pack to your hips, tighten the waist, attach the sternum strap and then go back and adjust the shoulders. It should be tight but not too constrictive on your body.

It really helps to have some items like compass, paper/pencil, and GPS readily available. Consider adding an extra pouch at the chest or waist for these small and oft-used items. Most of us have also discovered the convenience of a water tube and nozzle. I use a couple of liter bottles in my side pockets.

Seasonal Packs

As covered in Part 1 you should carry equipment and supplies relative to one of two seasons. I call them moderate and winter packs. As mentioned, moderate covers approximately April to September and winter includes October to March, relative to New Mexico. In thinking about what items to take during any season your primary factor is temperature. Even though most of your pack contents don't change from season to season you will be adding some items during winter - especially clothing. Another important factor to always consider is to be prepared for an overnight no matter what the season, and being comfortable using your pack contents.

Moderate Pack

When thinking about your moderate season clothing layers don't forget that if you are out overnight you'll probably be at a higher elevation where temperatures could get much lower than down in the flatland. A wind would lower the temperature even more. Consider clothing accordingly and don't skimp on your layers. I carry a minimum of a light first layer and medium weight second (and of course 3rd layer raingear). I also have another light or medium top to replace a sweat-soaked one or to add another layer if it gets chilly. The question to ask yourself again is, "Will I be warm enough for any condition I encounter, including nightfall, wearing everything I have?"

Even in summer your arms should be protected from sun and brush. Try a synthetic T-shirt covered with a light non-cotton or blend long-sleeve top. Button sleeves allow you to roll them up at times. (There is a reason Arabs wear loose, flowing, white garments).

Winter Pack

Your clothing needs change in winter. You should turn to your heavy or expedition weights as a middle layer. That doesn't mean you shouldn't hike in a medium or even light set. Even in colder temperatures you'll find a light first layer with a medium top or even windbreaker sufficient. But as soon as you stop you must have another dry set, preferably heavier, to change into. In fact, don't forget to change. After any hike you'll be wet as even synthetics don't wick all your sweat. It is also better to replace a wet top than to put another dry one over it.

What should your winter clothing layers be? There is no perfect combination that fits everyone for either season. It will take some trial and error on your part to finally decide. What you ultimately take away from incident base will also be reflective of the mission, terrain, weather and other conditions at the time. What generally works for me as a winter minimum is a light or medium weight first layer, expedition weight second and wearing or carrying a medium to heavy weight fleece insulating top and raingear. I hike in the medium or light weight and fleece if it's cold and make adjustments if it's warmer. In most stationary situations the dry expedition weight fleece and raingear is sufficient when stopped. You should also have on fleece or wool hand and headwear. Some might be comfortable hiking in just a medium weight or medium plus core-warming vest combination. If severe conditions are expected or if you get cold easily you should consider adding a down jacket. As you have heard before nothing warms like down. But beware! If you are in wet conditions, and this includes snow, you should cover the down jacket with your rainwear. If it becomes wet from the outside or inside it will be a heavy, useless, heat sucker. Your bottom doesn't lose heat like your torso and layering needs are probably less down there. I can usually get by with a light or medium first layer, expedition second plus raingear. Just the expedition under your rainwear might be enough. Always wear your gaiters in snow and even rainwear bottoms. Fleece can pick up snow like a magnet and then melt. Not so with nylon or slicker blends.

The one winter item that always comes into question is a sleeping bag. Here again you need to consider weight and size. A bag, even a light down one, still might be too big to stuff into your winter pack. If it will fit and doesn't max out your weight by all means carry it. It may end up saving the life of a hypothermic subject. I have taken mine on only a few missions though. In most cases I have my down jacket in serious winter conditions and it serves me as a torso sleeping bag. Wearing all my layers including the down jacket will keep me warm in all but the most severe of conditions. I can even survive, albeit a little uncomfortable, a cold night in these layers huddled in my bivy bag.

Another item worth mentioning is a stove. As with the warmth of a sleeping bag, warm liquids will do wonders for the hypothermic subject. There are many stoves on the market, but most are a pound or more not including fuel. Add another pound for an aluminum pan and food items and weight again becomes a factor. The answer most of us have found is the collapsible, tablet type (Esbit is one brand). If you stay with a small pan or sierra cup and a light menu of teas, broth and sugar drinks you can get the whole unit to a pound. I also carry a dehydrated meal that only weighs a few more ounces.

General Gear

Here are some gear items not on our standard list that I've learned I can't be without.
Gaiters: Get a strong, high top pair and use them all the time.
Helmet: Ok, you're not into climbing, don't carry a harness and are just there to help pull. If you're under any rocks, if there is anything or anyone above you, or you're just there to pull, you need a helmet. Carry it whenever there is the possibility of need. Hey, it's only your head.
Binocular or Monocular: I have used mine every year to search for someone or something. Small and cheap works fine.
Foam pad: A piece of thin, closed cell foam about the size of your torso (mine is only 15"x30") weighs only a ounce or two and is enough to keep the cold, bumpy ground from your tired bod. Use the folding z-rest type and you also have some great splinting material. (WFRs take note).
Maps: Start acquiring a set of topos of our prime areas and keep them in your extra bag. Never count on incident base to supply any.
Sunglasses: Protection from sun and branches. The bigger the better.
GPS: Someone on your search team needs one. It might as well be you. I just saw the eTrex on sale for $99.
Spare Pair of Glasses: This is for me (and anyone else over 40) . If I'm without my reading glasses I can't read maps, period. (I'm assuming you have a 1st pair).

Pack Tips (Part 2)

  1. Clothing with pit zips or mesh underarms work great to vent sweat while hiking. Look for them when buying any of your layers.
  2. I stressed the use of zip-loc freezer bags in Part 1 and can't repeat it enough. Stuff everything in your pack into different sizes, squeeze the air out while rolling them up, and snap a heavy rubber band on it. In addition to waterproofing, they shrink your contents, make packing easier and you can see what's in them. Make sure all your maps are also in them.
  3. Keep a bandanna handy while hiking to wipe sweat off your face and neck.
  4. Consider carrying the manuals to your radio and GPS, especially if you're not as familiar with them as you would like. Better yet, make copies of the most important instructions and take those instead.
  5. Instead of taking up pack space, larger items that can be rolled up like foam pads or bivys can probably be lashed on the outside of your pack. Keep extra straps handy for these and other items like your helmet.
  6. I have found it best to keep my radio batteries plugged into the charger all the time. Too often time or cold has drained them.
  7. Speaking of batteries, the same applies to your headlamp batteries. Check them often, especially if your pack stays in your cold vehicle all the time.
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Public Relations by Larry Mervine
Our next PR meeting is February 22nd at the Frontier Restaurant, at 6:30PM. Last month we had a lively discussion about which PR programs were working and to continue with much the same PR programs as last year. Anyone is welcome to attend. We like to hear about any about new ideas that could help build team membership. We will also be placing posters and brochures at different locations. If you have any locations in mind that we can place a poster or brochures, please let me know. Back to Top
Medical News by Mike Dugger
Our CE (continuing education) coordinator resigned from the team last week, which leaves us without one as of press time. Medical providers are required by the state of New Mexico to continue their training by obtaining a refresher course and a certain number of medical training credits before renewing their registration with the state. Most of our medical providers are WFRs (Wilderness First Responders), but we also have EMTs (Emergency Medical Technicians) and a nurse. Other skilled medical providers may join us in the future, such as paramedics and physician's assistants. The responsibility of the CE coordinator is to determine and communicate the CE requirements of each type of medical provider on our team, make our medical providers aware of opportunities to obtain CE credits through internal and external training, and schedule opportunities for new and existing medical providers to meet their registration or certification requirements.

It has been about 9 months since the last group of WFRs completed training. Fortunately, we still have plenty of time for these folks to meet their continuing education requirements before their registration expires. Appointment of a new CE coordinator is receiving top priority by our officers, and I'm sure that before the March business meeting we will have a new CE coordinator. Our previous CE coordinator has been asked to pass along all the information she collected regarding CE coordination and medical credits to the secretary, so that the next CE coordinator does not have to collect all of this information again. Back to Top
Web News by Tom Russo
Mike Dugger has joined the CSAR Web Staff and has begun editing team web pages, adding content, and doing routine maintenance. Bravo Mike! And Larry Mervine continues to help keep the cobwebs out of the directory with routine maintenance.

Mike has recently updated our photo gallery with new training photos, added a training debrief page for the December Land Nav training/Keith Hayes mission, and added a handout for the January Winter Shelters training. And Mike has also begun to take on most of the newsletter duties that I've been handling for the last three years, from nagging contributors about the deadline to prepping the final edition for copying. I truly appreciate that Mike and Larry have taken such an interest in helping with the site.
The team website can be accessed at http://www.cibolasar.org/
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Disclaimer and Copyright notice the Editors
The contents of this newsletter are copyright © 2001 by their respective authors or by Cibola Search and Rescue, Inc., and individual articles represent the opinions of the author. Cibola SAR makes no representation, express or implied, with regard to the accuracy of the information contained in these articles, and cannot accept any legal responsibility or liability for any errors or omissions that may be made. Articles contained in this newsletter may be reproduced, with attribution given to Cibola SAR and the author, by any member of the Search and Rescue community for use in other team's publications. TML>