Winter Hike Training
Learn to properly traverse multiple environments in winter conditions. This may include blowing snow, steep icy conditions, and extreme temperatures.
Occasionally during a search it is necessary for the searchers to remain in the field overnight, and occasionally this occurs during the winter. This training simply simulates such circumstances. A foundational understanding of winter backpacking and winter wilderness camping is required before participating in this training. Anyone wanting to learn these skills must find a certified member to instruct them before the training. Anyone participating in this training not already certified must attend a “pack check” prior to the training. The “pack check” will help ensure that you are properly supplied for the expected conditions.
All the gear necessary to hike 5 miles and camp at high elevation during the winter. There is no magic list for what all this means so it is strongly encouraged that you discuss this with our experienced members. A good place to start is to make sure you own all the required gear for the SAR Tech III level. Here are two links you may find useful for determining what gear you may need:
Whatever you feel will make the experience more enjoyable, but remember you will be carrying it for 5 miles, possibly in deep snow. The idea is to survive with what you would normally have with you.
This is a basic awareness class for learning to identify avalanche conditions. Usually taught near treeline in deep snow, participants of this class must bring appropriate equipment and be in appropriate physical condition. This class is very important to participate in winter searches. Avalanches pose a very real threat to the lives of searchers. Members must learn to identify when avalanche risk is present so that it can be avoided. This class is usually taught on Hoosier Pass in either January or February.
Sunglasses, Gear required to dig in the snow for several hours.
Avalanche Probe, Avalanche Shovel (metal or high quality lexan polycarbonate recommended), Avalanche Beacon