TONTO RIM SEARCH AND RESCUE SQUAD, Inc.
STRAWBERRY, AZ 85544
self-supporting, not-for-profit group of volunteer citizens
dedicated to improving safety in the Arizona wilderness.
under the authority of the Gila County Sheriff's Office
Sheriff, Adam Shepherd
TRSAR Squad meets monthly
General Public Welcome
2nd Thursday @ 7:00 - 9:00 PM
Payson Public Library Meeting Room
328 N. McLane Road - Payson, Arizona
for the PDF version of this newsletter
SAR Conference, Heber 2013
by Susan Starr
Our usual SAR K9 Conference of the last two years in Flagstaff was
combined this year with the state SAR conference in Heber. It was
somewhat abbreviated from what we were used to - which was four
straight days of classes and fieldwork - down to two days. But in
conjunction with the statewide conference, it had to be smaller to
be part of the overall format.
The only two participants from TRSAR was myself and Wyman Kendall
from the Mounted Posse. We had our dogs entered into the same Friday
course, "Tracking and Trailing". This was regular and normal stuff
for Ringo and Toulouse, but this was going to be very new for
Cassie, Mounted Posse's dog. She is trained in air scenting, but
Wyman wanted her to learn nose-to-ground trailing.
Our instructor, Vi Brown, was from "Southwest Rescue Dogs", which is
the SAR dog organization from Pima County. She started out with two
exercises I absolutely was excited to see: they set off colored
smoke bombs on the basketball court to show how scent drifts. Greg
Reed and I have talked often about how much we wish we could see
scent, as if it was colored smoke and we could watch it drift and
pool. This was amazing to see what we had been talking about
actually done. The other exercise she demonstrated was the "scatter"
of the 10,000 raft cells you lose with every step you take. The
instructor had spread out multi-colored glitter in about a two foot
path and made each one of us humans try to follow that path. It was
a visual demonstration for humans of what a dog's nose "sees".
Then we started to work our dogs. Ringo and Toulouse both did a good
job on short, clipped tracks, but they are very used to practicing
this sort of track. Then it was Wyman's turn with Cassie. She
initially ran the track air scenting and did the whole track very
quickly. But then we started to redo the whole track asking her to
track/trail, not air scent.
Our instructor at this point was Martin Premble, a K9 police officer
and instructor from Kent, England. He is here in the states going
about to different SAR conferences getting new information to take
back to England. Martin gave us quite a bit of new insight into what
we were doing.
Martin and several of us were observing Wyman working Cassie on
tracking/trailing and it was a struggle for both the dog and the
handler, but with Martin's guidance, both Wyman and Cassie worked
the trail, and in time, Cassie got her reward. It took about 25
minutes, but that is a good training track time for a dog that
hasn't done real nose-to-ground trailing before.
The next day was training only, no tracking/trailing classes so we
set up our own tracks for our dogs. I asked if Martin would observe
Toulouse and me doing a track. Bill from La Paz County set me a
track, which went around a ball field and into a dense forest area.
Toulouse had a good start, but then got "stuck" out on the ball
field, meaning he could not figure out how to get beyond the fence.
Martin kept telling me Quit talking to your dog! leave him quiet to
let him make up his own mind. Martin asked me if my dog was still
working and I said he is, so Martin had me bring him back to the
last good scent, and then Toulouse went around the outside fence,
through the scrub and found Bill in a ravine. Martin's evaluation
was my dog was doing well but I needed a lot of work, especially on
handling the leash. He was right about that.
The last track I did was with Ringo - I had another SRDI handler,
Klaus, set a blind track for Ringo. They normally don't do blind,
unclipped tracks, but I asked for one for Ringo, that involved one
single problem: go up a fire break, make a turn at the top and don't
tell me which way you are turning. The problem for Ringo was to make
a committed turn to the left or the right. Ringo started well, but
about 100 yards into the track he stopped dead and looked at me. As
Martin the Englishman had been trying to reinforce in me, I shut up
and waited for Ringo to make a decision. Eventually he turned up the
fire break at top speed, make a left at the top and found Klaus
about fifty yards away. I was very pleased with my dog who did what
was requested: He solved the problem.
This K9 conference was not as intense as the last two I have been
to, but I met new people with new ideas and learned a lot. I was
very proud of Ringo and Toulouse; those two wild and crazy guys make
me look good, while all I am doing is hanging onto a 15 foot leash
for dear life. Every step on the path of learning is a good step.
Note from Gary: Training:
The Board wants to review the schedule Tuesday before the regular
meeting Thursday. Then, if there is any additional items/changes
that come up at the Thursday meeting the Board wants the final
updated schedule for publishing on Friday. That will reduce the any
multiple drafts that may confuse members.
PDF version of this Training
Tonto Rim Search and
May Training Schedule
Mothers Day - May 12
Self Study- Reminder - Read "Arizona Basic
Search and Rescue Manual" as requested by the
Sheriff's Office. The manual is on disc that was
recently handed out at the SAR meeting. If you
need one it can be requested at the next
Dog Training. Susan Starr 480-278-3806
Times and locations to be announced. Contact
May 11 Saturday May 18 Saturday May 23 Thursday
June 1 Saturday June 8 Saturday
Man Tracking. Jim McMillion Home 928-476-2078
May 15 1500 hours Wednesday Houston Mesa Road
and FS 198 (4.5 miles from Route 87). Watch for
May 18 1530 hours Saturday Tonto Natural Bridge
½ mile off Rt. 87. Watch for traffic cones.
Rope Training Roger Miotto 928-978-0783
18 0830 hours Saturday Place: Rye Bridges -
Instructor: Roger Miotto
Navigation. Jim Oelerich 602-370-9785
May 16 1730 hours Thursday Tonto Natural Bridge
Training materials; Obtain a USGS Map of either
Payson area or Strawberry.
Course Objectives; 1) Locate victim on the map
2) Plot route to given position on map
3) Use GPS to obtain latitude and longitude and
First Aid/CPR Dave Burhart 623-640-0353
18 0900 hours Saturday American Legion, Highway
June 22 0900 hours Saturday American Legion,
Incident Command System Self Training "Required"
All members are required to complete a
government required training in the Incident
Command System/National Incident Management
System. A certificate is issued following
training needs to be turned in to the Squad
Commander. To access the self training go to;
Select IS-100.b and IS-700 located in the right
column and click "Take This Course" located in
right column and complete the self study. There
will be an exam at the end of the course.
Training Coordinator: Gary Morris 602-803-7366
May 15, 2013
If you haven't already gotten new business cards with
Sheriff Adam Shepherd listed instead of former Sheriff John
Armer, contact Mike Taylor.
Copyright © 2014 Tonto Rim
Search and Rescue Squad