went my truck onto I-495 in the early morning darkness on Saturday. With
197,650+ trouble-free miles on it, I knew I could trust it to bring me to the
Holy Land in time for a 7:30:00:00AM EST arrival for the annual MRG Patrol
Refresher. Steve Pardy was always a stickler for being on time and that
Reports had it that people were hoofing in from App Gap
to earn some turns on the whopping 2" on grass. In fact, I just got an
e-mail from a "spotter" hiking from Lincoln Peak to App Gap which mentioned that
"one of my photos was of the set of tracks at the top of MRG,
someone just couldn't wait.".
Some new things at MRG are some new "WizLoc Adjustable
Extrication Collars" that we are trying out (I liked 'em when I saw 'em at
patroller meeting at Belleayre 14 months ago) and some Kendrick Traction
Splints. The latter are really sweet, but I personally like the Sager
Splints a little better. With the Sagers, it's a 1 piece and the gauge at
the bottom ensures you apply the right amount of traction. Bit
like I said, I do like the new Kendricks - the old Hare and Thomas splints which
has served first aid well over the years have been outclassed. Some new
water bars and erosion control measures have been implemented as well as some
new re-gen zones on Upper Panther and some trees planted along lower Chipmunk
(well, I guess it's called Gazelle, now).
One thing that has not changed is the Pro Patrol
roster. The turnover in this department has been very low over the past
few years. In fact, much of the entire patrol has remained
intact. I think this explains why we work so well together and why
we efficiently flew through everything during the weekend ......AND we have fun,
Lift evac practice today went very well for me as well
as the written portion of the CPR test. We did CPR/AED/Heimlich stuff
today 'til we were blue in the face.
After cleaning up the Basebox, there was still 3 hours
of daylight left, so Rocky and I charged up Stark Mountain to progress on a line
we worked on almost 2 months ago. It's really an overgrown older line -
very often, I have clipped some dense stuff only to discover some very worn old
stumps and other evidence of clipping from years ago.