Mountain Rescue- Dedication Factors

With the decision to become an active part of Riverside Mountain Rescue Unit (RMRU) come several factors that change ones life to a greater or lesser degree. First, is the desire to help persons lost, injured, stranded in areas considered "Inaccessible" by the media, et. al. This desire burns brightly in some members, and it costs nothing in time, money, or effort. The following factors do have costs:

Participation can be hardest when a callout occurs and we must tear away from work, family activities, warm bed, or our own recreational backpacks. Callouts do not occur during rare times we wish one would occur.

Money is a big factor as we look at a number of expenditures necessary to be well equipped and otherwise prepared to function with RMRU:

Packs - need at least two, cost $300,00 to $469.00 for good ones.
Sleeping bags - need two, cost $300.00 to $600.00 for good ones.
Tent - up to $600.00 to $800.00 for all-season, models
Boots - for summer, $200.00 to $300.00, for winter, up to over $500.00
Parka - shell, $300.00 and up, insulated, up to $500.00 plus
Pants - $200.00 and up.
Flashlights - need several, big expenditure, plus battery replacements.
Other items include sleeping pads, bivvy covers, climbing gear, foods, stoves & fuel, cooking utensils, knives, vehicle upkeep, and so on. "Deals" are sometimes available.

Effort runs in the realm of determination and motivation for physical conditioning, not letting home projects lag, familiarizing oneself with road heads and mountain trails and topography, and generally staying abreast with mountain rescue methodology.

Training is the process that merges, integrates, and implements safe, efficient, and successful missions through the above factors and the actual in-the-field exercises to learn and practice how mountain rescue is done, performed and accomplished. So, what phases do we work on? First aid (subject care); search methods; map & compass & GPS; tracking; helicopter operations; familiarization; technical rescue on cliffs where anchors to the cliff, rigging with ropes, pulleys, brake bars, various camming clamps, ascending and descending devices, and carabineers are utilized, having been backpacked to the scene. Of course, there's Base Camp where our vans with equipment are, along with vital communications capability, record keeping, and directions from the Operations Leader.

Normally, we conduct one formal training a month, during a weekend. There are frequent informal sessions as well. Consider, over almost forty years or our existence, we've conducted nearly 400 formal trainings- - they are great - - always looked forward to with eager anticipation.

Hopefully, this has been an informative glimpse of who we are and what we do.