Home Search Links
About Us
Board Officers
Contact Us
Frequently Asked Questions
TRSAR Dog Team
SAR Training Schedule
Mission Index
Fossil Creek Index
Project Lifesaver
Donation Information
Topo Quads
SAR Coordinates 2014
Coordinates Archives
Wilderness Survival
Current Payson Weather


May 2013


P.O. BOX 357

A self-supporting, not-for-profit group of volunteer citizens dedicated to improving safety in the Arizona wilderness.

Operating 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


Click here 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 is available


Tonto Rim Search and Rescue
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 meeting.
Dog Training. Susan Starr 480-278-3806 kansasstarr88@yahoo.com
Times and locations to be announced. Contact Susan.
May 11 Saturday May 18 Saturday May 23 Thursday June 1 Saturday June 8 Saturday

Man Tracking. Jim McMillion Home 928-476-2078 Cell 928-970-2451
May 15 1500 hours Wednesday Houston Mesa Road and FS 198 (4.5 miles from Route 87). Watch for traffic cones.
May 18 1530 hours Saturday Tonto Natural Bridge mile off Rt. 87. Watch for traffic cones.

Rope Training Roger Miotto 928-978-0783 rogerrescuesarge@msn.com

May 18 0830 hours Saturday Place: Rye Bridges - Instructor: Roger Miotto

Navigation. Jim Oelerich 602-370-9785 jim.oelerich@gmail.com
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 confirm it

First Aid/CPR Dave Burhart 623-640-0353 david@cprarizona.com

May 18 0900 hours Saturday American Legion, Highway 260.
June 22 0900 hours Saturday American Legion, Highway 260.

Incident Command System Self Training "Required" Reminder

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 mercurymorris@hotmail.com
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. miket@trsar.org



Back Home Next


Copyright 2017 Tonto Rim Search and Rescue Squad