Sunday, January 21, 2007

CMRU Winter Travel & Rescue

Well, yesterday I was able to go on my first CMRU (Corvallis Mountain Rescue Unit) training day.  Jason, Nate, I and a few others drove up to Santiam Pass on route 20 to meet up with Bob who would be our resident instructor.  Before I go on let me say a few things about Bob:
    Bob has won National Ski Patroller of the Year more times than anyone.  He has been doing mountain rescue for the past 20+ years and it the most knowledgeable person I've ever met about any travel/rescue/survival in the mountains.  I would happily trust my life to him in any situation and I feel privelaged that I am going to learn high mountain rescue from him over the next 5 to 6 years.
    It was a relaxing day of learning how to use our GPS to locate waypoints in the woods.  It was my first time snowshoeing in the pass and I thought it was truly beautiful.  There was 6+ feet of snow on the ground and no brush like in the East Coast bushwacking.  When we found our final locatioin to meet up we dug a snow shelter and Bob showed us how to analyze the snow for avalanche danger.  We then wrapped Bob in a sled and pulled him back to the car in a mock rescue situation.   
    Overall I learned a great deal and we were only in the woods for about 5-6 hours.  I can't wait until the next saturday of training next month.  Hopefully someday I'll be as knowledgeable as Bob and can teach others as well as he does.


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