On the Memorial

Entries in SB Mountain SAR (13)


2015 MRA Re-Accreditation

To be a fully accredited member of the Mountain Rescue Association a search and rescue team must pass a test in each of three disciplines: Technical rope rescue, snow and ice rescue, and wilderness search and tracking management that includes an ELT search. To maintain accreditation, each team must pass a re-accreditation test every five years. The California Region of the MRA has chosen to follow a re-accreditation cycle of every three years, so each year California teams test in one of the three disciplines. This year was technical rope rescue, and it was hosted by Sierra Madre Search and Rescue in Joshua Tree National Park. Next year it will be snow and ice, and Inyo County SAR is hosting.

In San Bernardino County there are two fully-accredited SAR teams: West Valley SAR and the Cave Rescue Team. There are two associate member teams who are progressing toward full accreditation. Wrightwood SAR has completed the search and tracking accreditation, and San Bernardino Mountain is preparing for their technical rope rescue accreditation.

My team improved dramatically during our quest toward full MRA accreditation. We firmed up our leadership, honed a few new skills, and became a more effective resource for our region. I highly recommend accepting the challenge. It will be difficult, and time consuming, but you will be better for it. Broadening your SAR involvement with teams throughout the state and country is an inspiring endeavor. You learn that many teams struggle with the same issues, and may have helpful solutions. It is an extrememly helpful network. Also, if you think you are too small, keep in mind that we did it with a roster smaller than 15.


Personal Vertical Skills (PVS) Class

Hosted by:

San Bernardino Mountain Search & Rescue TeamSBSAR photos
To sign-up for the class you must have completed your BSAR Certification.

Class Dates:

August 20, 22, 27 & 29 from 1800-2200 hrs.


September 8 @ 0700 hrs. Mojave Narrows


Classroom location will be emailed to students who sign up. Test location is still to be determined and will be emailed out to those who are signed up.


This will be a large class, therefore ask your team to have their Basic Rope Technicians (BRT) and Intermediate Rope Technicians (IRT) sign up to help assist. Note in the sign-up if you are a new student, re-cert, BRT or IRT helper (helpers also note all the sessions with which you will be helping.)
To sign-up for the class you must have completed your BSAR Certification.

Sign Up

Click the link below to send an email to Jack Nelson at his SBSAR.ORG account.
  • First and last name
  • Team affiliation
  • contact phone #.
You will know you are in the class when you get a reply email back saying you are signed-up.

September PVS

SB Mountain SAR is in the process of hosting a personal vertical skills (PVS) class. The check-off is this coming Saturday, 9/22/2011 in the Heart Bar area. The photos below are a classroom session in preparation for the test. Keep in mind that PVS is required for BMC.


SB Mountain SAR Hosting PVS Class

SB Mountain SAR is hosting a PVS class Tuesday and Thursday beginning on September 6. You can read the flyer for details. Contact Justin Wheaton at his email address to sign up.


SB Mountain SAR Fundraiser

The San Bernardino Mountain SAR Team is hosting a "Night at the Improv" fundraiser on September 7. Read the flyer for details.


Recent PVS Graduates Demonstrate Rope Prowess

SB Mountain SAR , along with members of the Cave and Technical Rescue Team, and Wirghtwood/Phelan SAR, hosted a 6 evening personal vertical skills course. members from Rim of the World SAR, West Valley SAR, West Valley Mounted Posse,  and Dave Nicolet himself, also attended the course. 

Belay Workshops: Catching a Live Fall

From Photos
An important skill, a life saving one at that, is a rope belay. It is a skill emphasized and taught in SAR. However it is skill that thankfully is rarely used. Cognitively, it is a perishable skill. Teach a person to belay. A year later, he/she may or may not recall the details of how to do it. Have the person actually catch a fall, the learning goes much deeper.

Click to read more ...


Two Missions on Baldy

West Valley SAR received a call Friday night for some overdue hikers in the Baldy area whose family said that they were going to "walk the creek". The missing 21 and 13 year old were to return at dark, and when they failed to show, their family notified authorities. Sheriff's Aviation was also on scene and was successful in locating the missing hikers in Stead Canyon. Throughout the night, a ground team attempted to locate the hikers, but due to the brush, and lack of response to their shouts and whistles, the searchers were not able to establish contact. At first light, Sheriff's Aviation launched a rescue ship which was successful in hoisting the two hikers and their dogs. After a chilly night, and a short helicopter ride, the two hikers were released to their family.

View Two Baldy Missions on 11/27/2010 in a larger map

Just as the air crew was gathering their gear, Baldy Fire caught a call for an unconscious hiker on the hut trail. The report said that by-standers were administering CPR, and that the patient was not responsive. Members of Baldy Fire, San Bernardino County Fire, and AMR made their way up the trail, while members of the Cave Rescue Team and San Bernardino Mountain Rescue Team quickly joined them after gathering a litter, litter wheel, backboard, and oxygen bottle. 
Rescuers continued CPR and employed an AED, but the collapsed hiker never regained a heartbeat. Sheriff's Aviation returned to the Baldy area after fueling, and lowered a medic and litter. One member of San Bernardino Mountain Rescue Team and one Baldy Fire crew member walked the deceased hiker's girlfriend down the trail, while the remaining SAR members and fire crew packaged the hiker, and assisted in the hoist.




SB Mountain SAR Passes Rope Rescue Evaluation

Congratulations to the SB Mountain SAR Team for successfully passing their rope rescue evaluation. The team successfully raised an injured hiker approximately 200 feet up an embankment in Cucamonga Canyon under the close watch of the Rope Rescue Oversight Committee (RROC).


Rescue Near Baldy, Below Sugarloaf Peak

View Dotti Rescue in a larger map

West Valley SAR received a call early Monday morning for two hikers who had become stuck after an unsuccessful retreat from Sugarloaf Peak. The hikers were located in a drainage about 1200' below the peak, exhausted, and unable to proceed safely. With the help of Sheriff's Aviation the hikers were located, and a team of 3 made their way to the hikers' location. The climb to the hikers was a steep talus slope common to the area, but the true difficulty was the heavy "buck brush" in a 200' swath between drainages. The first team on scene took approximately 2 hours to traverse this patch of brush. Team 2, comprised of members of the Cave & Technical Rescue Team and the Mountain SAR Team scouted a route at first light. It was determined that this team could avoid much of the brush if they climbed to a band of rocks approximately 200' above the stranded hikers, then dropped into the drainage. As it turned out, this was the easier route. After approximately 2 hours of climbing, Team 2 reached the hikers and the two teams began to assess evacuation options.

Not long after Team 2 arrived, the command post was notified that 40-K was inbound to assess a possible helicopter extraction. The slope was rather steep, but the air crew was able to load all passengers via a hover step. 3 trips were required to get everybody back to Cow Canyon Saddle. The hikers were tired, but relatively unharmed.