OCC Final 
Sunday, August 26, 2012, 09:14 PM - AMRC
Posted by Administrator
The Operational Core Curriculum class final was this weekend for AMRC. Last year, I was the new guy, hardly knew what a cam was, and certainly wasn't comfortable running missions.

This year I was the rescue leader for the first scenario along with Tim. We dispatched the team at 7pm for Diablo Canyon and caravaned to the IB. I took Team 2 out, worked down the southside of the canyon using active attraction, and meet up with Team 1 at the patient about 250 m up a talusfield. The patient had sprained her ankle so Brian and Carrie took good care of her (hot ginger tea) while the remaining teams setup two low-angle lowers. Lot of hard work to get out with a smooth but tricky hand-over-hand pass to the wheel. After that it was back to the IB. Total mission time from arrival: 2:45. Little slow but not bad for new folks.


After the training (around 1am), Mike asked me if I wanted to go caving with him. I asked if it was a "cave of wonders," and with the affirmative reply, it was right back out into the wilderness. We eventually located an entrance that was so small our helmets couldn't fit without being removed. It did open up for a little bit and we chased a string around for a while before coming to a 50 ft drop. We rapped off a chockstone and found another (huge) entrance. You didn't even have to duck for this one! Caving in the middle of the night is interesting because you can't tell where the entrances/exits are until you're standing outside.

Back inside we ascended the rope and worked our way to another rappel. A couple nuts and a cam were tossed in a crack and off I went. When I got to the lip I was shocked that the vertical drop nearly used all the 100' rope! This really was the cave of wonders! We continued to explore for another 1/2 hr, got cliffed out again at the edge of a huge room, and then found another neat, very tight passage that eventually led to entrance 2. A long and painful prusik ride up the 100' of 8 mm back to the squeeze - and we were out. We hiked back down the mountain and into a quiet campsite at 5am. Brushed and threw out my sleeping pad and bag and got a nice sub-2 hr night's rest.

The next day, the operation members tested out the new folks on knots and knowledge. We set up a few fixed static lines on Styx for ascends/rappels and I was happy to on-sight Minion. There was one huge block that I nearly pulled out of the wall though, so that gave me a nice scare.

After a siesta and a mechanical advantage test. (Can you build a 7:1 system using 3 pulleys?) it was back into the heat. In the high angle scenario, I went over the edge and clipped the main and belay to the heat stoke patient. Overall, the lower went very well. Leigh helped administer food and water before the patient could be loaded into the litter and IVed. The low angle work was super slow, but we eventually got out cruising with the wheel and under Justin's direction.

"Patient complaining of cramping in calves, nausea, and headache. Better pull up WebMD."

Partied it up with the new members and BBQed some brats and burgers. Not quite as fun the first time through the class, but it was still a great weekend.

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