A radio. I’ve reached (just over) half way on the 18 month Aspirant Training Programme for Edale Mountain Rescue Team (EMRT).
For the first 9 months Aspirants can only attend call-outs if accompanied by a Full Team Member (aka ‘FTM’) or if it is a Search (the vast majority of EMRT call-outs are to a casualty at a known location … we call those a Snatch).
You have to attend a lot of stuff and pass an exam in casualty care to be allowed on the call-out list. So now i can attend everything.
As part of the aspirancy i’ve kept a log of the activity, duration, and mileage of my volunteering commitment since joining the team late last Summer. It averages out at over 45 hours per month.
It’s a strange hobby because fundamentally what you’re hoping for is to be tested in dealing with trauma in a crag or big hill setting. There is a very very significant depth of experience on the Team and the bar is set deliberately high. This morning we checked, cleaned, restocked, and repacked all of the team equipment after 6 call-outs in 4 days. Then just before lunch time (during the torrential deluge), we deployed to give emergency medical care to a very seriously injured climber on a gritstone crag, and evacuated him to the road.
Returning to Base like drowned rats we did a hasty kit sort before deploying to a walker with a lower leg fracture in Edale.
Returning to Base like twice drowned rats we set about drying and cleaning and sorting the kit and ourselves out. The humour was high and much tea was consumed.
I had my lunch at about 8pm.
Nine months left as an Aspirant, including several exams and many many hundreds of hours of commitment. Countless cups of tea too. Turned out nice again.