The first Inyo Search and Rescue (SAR) Winter Race kicked off last week on Jan. 31, with 40 participants, and 100 percent of donations going to benefit Inyo SAR. Originally pioneered by Sage to Summit, the volunteer-staffed Winter Race Series is now in its second year. This year Inyo SAR is proud to have support (and more importantly, prizes!) from many local businesses such as: Sage to Summit, Great Basin Bakery, Black Sheep Coffee, Blue Lupine health food store, Skratch Labs, Hammer Nutrition, Manor Market, Eastside Sports, Ann Piersall Hats, and Burger Barn!
The top three finishers in the men’s 5k race on Jan. 31 were: Dan Yarborough (1st) with a time of 19:04, Nick Buckmas (2nd) 19:18, and Frank Klein (3rd) 21:29.
The top three finishers in the women’s 5k race were: Kelly Devine (1st) with a time of 21:33, Elizabeth Otto (2nd) 21:51, and Karen Schwartz (3rd) 24:31.
Inyo SAR is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization, under the direction of the Inyo County Sheriff’s department, located in Bishop, California.
The team is called upon in emergency situations to assist members of the public in distress in all areas of Inyo County. Inyo SAR also assists Search and Rescue teams in other counties of California when additional rescuers are needed for large scale or complex missions.
Inyo County is home to the highest and lowest points in the lower 48 states … Mt. Whitney at 14,495 feet above sea level and Badwater Basin at 282 feet below sea level in Death Valley. The Eastern Sierra is a rugged and sparsely populated area of California with diverse geographical terrain and extreme weather conditions. It is a popular tourist destination with over 5 million visitors annually.
The team responds to an average of 50 emergencies per year, the majority of these occurring on the Mt. Whitney trail during the summer months.
The Inyo SAR team is trained in three broad disciplines of search and rescue:
- Technical Rock Rescue
- Winter / Avalanche Rescue
- Search & Tracking
Certification in these disciplines is done by the Mountain Rescue Association (MRA), of which Inyo SAR is a member organization.
Members of the team also receive ongoing training in basic first aid and CPR, water rescue, communications and incident command. Individual members train in specialized areas such as K9 search, scuba diving, advanced rock climbing, EMT, Wilderness First Responder (WFR) and other areas of expertise.
Membership is open to any person over the age of 18 who has the desire and willingness to help others in need. No specific skills are required and training is provided to all members throughout the year. All activities are undertaken on an opt-in basis and no-one is expected to participate in any activity beyond their level of comfort and safety. Individual and team safety is the primary concern of every team member.
If you live in Inyo County and are interested in joining Inyo SAR, please attend our General meeting the first Thursday of the month at the Posse Hut (the first building on your right off of the Bishop Airport road) at 7pm.
The next Inyo SAR Winter Race will be held March 14.