Category: Essay

Articles that I spent more than average time and research on, notable for thoroughness.

The Autoimmune Expedition

A few years ago, around about the time I started this blog, I was selected with a group of other rescue people to form the helicopter rescue team for the downhill skiing venue at the Vancouver – Whistler 2010 Olympics. That’s

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Smart Phones and Battery Life

I’ve written previously about how you shouldn’t use smart phones for backcountry navigation. In that article I made some claims about battery life. My article was reposted (not my me) in a forum, and some of the replies to that

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Personal Locator Beacons from the Rescuer’s Perspective

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A case study of a recent rescue in Southwest BC My SAR Team just completed a rescue of three stranded hikers in the DeBeck Creek area north of Coquitlam, on the west side of Pitt Lake. If this sounds familiar

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Finding Someone from a Helicopter

The call At 4am June 13th, 2007 my pager went off, waking me from a very deep sleep. The pager goes off all the time, but this early in the morning it’s almost always a bad thing. People tend to

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Why you shouldn’t use Smart Phones for Backcountry Navigation

Smart phones are everywhere. By “Smart Phone” I’m referring to any mobile phone that has additional functions, but specifically for the purposes of this article a smart phone is any phone that has a GPS or A-GPS function. My assertion

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Frequency of SAR Incidents

Most SAR teams maintain records of each incident independently from PEP, but even if they didn’t I’m sure they would all agree; there are more SAR incidents in the summer than in the winter. Further, calls come with greater frequency

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Distribution of SAR Incidents in BC

I was at a meeting last night and heard a SAR member state a bald claim that the Southwest region of BC has more incidents than the rest of BC combined. I was pretty sure this was not the case

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SAR Numbers from other Provinces

For years I’ve been told that British Columbia has more SAR incidents than the rest of Canada combined. This sounds hard to believe, as BC has 4 million people (13% of Canada) and only comprises about 10% of the total

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How to Kill Yourself Snowshoeing

In 2009 my SAR team did a rescue on Eagle Ridge which made me realize something that all snowshoers need to know. I’ve noticed a trend in backcountry incidents that deserves mention; it has a clear cause, can be avoided

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On Getting Lost (Part 2): Corner and Edge Cases

First some definitions: missing is when someone you know can’t be found. Lost is when you can’t find yourself (you don’t know where you are). A missing person may not be lost. As I’ve mentioned before, there are several reasons

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