Wednesday 1 December 2010

Winter is here!

Boy, is it beautiful (and very cold here). Not quite the same amounts of snow as the North and the East but it is still stunning and Pen y Pass causing its own problems for normal vehicles on the morning commute!

Tilly, our fourteen and a half year old collie is loving her warm Hurrta Jacket. These have to be the best designed dog jackets ever. I would thoroughly recommend them. Doesn't she look smart! (and warm).

me and the LLMRT in action

I ran a Mountain Rescue Casualty Care course along with Gerry and Will, fellow team members, for Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team and a few extras from Ogwen and Cave Rescue. It went well and we had lots of fun with scenarios. Hearing new members comment on the detail of knowledge required at this level I remember how overwhelmed I was on my first Cas Care course over fifteen years ago. I would never have dreamt that one day I would be teaching on the course myself!

I leave you with some scenic photos of Snowdon and Cloggy

Friday 19 November 2010

Mountain Rescue First Aid

This weekend I am attending and teaching some sessions on the Mountain Rescue Casualty Care course for my rescue team (Llanberis MRT). It is a requirement that all MRT members have a first ais qualification of some sort. Many have a minimum of REC Level 2. However, if you wish to specialise in First Aid then a higher qualification is required such as the Emergency Care in Mountain Rescue (ECMR) at either Intermediate or Advanced level, or the Cas Care course.

Good luck to a friend of mine, Joy Grindrod, who is being assessed for the Lake District Search Dogs this weekend with Cluanie's sister, Einich.

Wednesday 17 November 2010

A long,tiring but successful weekend!

Cluanie and I were assessed for Novice  Mountain Rescue Search Dog at the weekend. After flunking our first area (my fault as I allowed myself to be overwhelmed by the size of the area in Cwm Ffynon), we then managed to pass all the following four areas. Not an easy task, as we then had no room for error and had to pass the rest of the areas. It was not easy to pick myself up from failing the first area, but fortunately Cluanie did not know we were on assessment and nerves were not on her agenda! She went about searching in her usual keen and efficient manner. As a result, on Sunday afternoon we were awarded the coveted red search dog tag.

Cluanie and I with our assessors overlooking our final seach area.

It is sad to say that the more search dogs you train, the harder the assessments actually seem. Cluanie is now my third Mountain Rescue Dog, and none of the assessments seem to get any easier!

In the mean time Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team was out on an epic rescue of two stuck climbers.

Tuesday 26 October 2010

Busy two weeks

Cluanie and I attended our SARDA pre-assessment weekend. Cluanie worked well finding all the bodies (the people who hide on the mountain-side for us to find!) but is getting quite lazy in her returning to tell me. She prefers to stand at the body and bark (makes sense to an intelligent dog; why return all the way to the handler when they are in sight!). Unfortunately this is not good enough for assessment and so we need to put a bit of work in before now and the main assessment in November.

This last weekend we were called out to a search in Colwyn Bay to look for a missing person. We got to search quarries that the general public do not have access to, so it was an interesting afternoon. Fortunately the man turned up safe and well.

Yesterday I was enjoying the autumn sun and colours on Snowdon, leading a walk for Rhyd-y-Creuau FSC Centre. The rocks were covered with verglass and the night temperature had reached -6 C at Rhyd-y-Creuau. The views were stunning for miles around. By the afternoon the beginnings of the front could be seen with cirrus clouds in a line across the sky and the wind was getting stronger.

This morning we wake to the sounds of gales and rain; yes, typical Half Term holiday weather! I'm off to Llangollen for two days to teach Outdoor First Aid to UCLAN (University of Central Lancashire) Outdoor Education students. Looks like I'm not going to miss much, weather-wise!

Thursday 14 October 2010

The change is here

Finally, the weather has clagged in. Snowdonia has been so lucky over the first half of this week, basking in glorious sun and warmth whilst a lot of the rest of the UK has been cloudy. In the meantime I have spent three day's walking some of the lesser known peaks.

On October 18th the Basic Life Support and Resuscitation changes are due to be announced by the Resus Council. I will keep you posted!

Final Throws of Autumn

Snowdonia has been stunning over the past few days. I've been making the most of it before the weather breaks and the cloud sets in. I had intended to add some photos of the conditions to the blog but discovered my card reader will not accept an SDHC card, so the photos will have to wait.

      I also decided to get out with the dogs and get Cluanie and myself as fit as possible before our Mountain Search Dog Assessment for SARDA Wales in November. Cluanie is a three year old border collie who currently is at Novice Lowland Grade.