You may have noticed the AST’s Helo One flying around the resort yesterday. Patrol teamed up with Alaska State Troopers for some helicopter training. Pilot Mel Nading briefed us on the way he needs thing done around the helicopter. After briefing, we put the dogs in the ship.
Once the dogs had a chance to explore in and around the helicopter, Mel spooled up and the dogs and handlers did practice loads with the rotor spinning. Zooka and Fundy were delivered to a mock scenario in Ptarmigan Gully. Both dogs recovered well from the stress of chopper transportation and found our buried patroller.
The training was the culmination of a conversation that started at the Top of Two four years ago. With dog teams, personnel well-versed in first-aid, and avalanche hazard evaluators, our patrol is in a good position to positively affect the outcome of a backcountry incident.
Alaska’s backcountry rescue response will continue to evolve and we are excited to be a part of it.