Evening training exercise takes advantage of wintry conditions upon the local moors

We took a break from the last stages of our Mountain Rescue Casualty Care Training tonight (the dreaded exams will soon be upon us) to take advantage of the wintry conditions still present on our local moorlands.

Twenty eight team members assembled at 20.00hrs at the high point of the road between Belmont and Rivington, known as Hordern Stoops, to be faced with the exercise scenario of a missing female Fell Runner (Our Training Officer Elaine Gilliland had gone and got herself lost!) somewhere on Winter Hill.

Conditions were excellent, clear skies, fantastic views and a very chilling wind (Minus one still air temperature but considerably colder with the wind and at ground level – which was to lead to problems later!)

Four search parties were despatched, along with SARDA Dog Boris and Trainee SARDA Dog Bella, to locate Elaine, with a surprising amount of hard packed snow still present on the north facing escarpment of Winter Hill adding ‘fun’ to the proceedings.

Elaine was successfully located just before 21.00hrs, when news came of our help being required by team friend Carl Silver (See Incident Report 35) with Deputy Team Leader Geoff Seddon duly despatched to offer such.

Some ‘Distress Flare’ practice took place, (After first informing GMP and Lancashire Constabulary) and then it was a stretcher carry of Elaine off the snowy summit of Winter Hill and down back to our vehicles, when the hill parties were advised of an RTC near to our vehicles (Again see Incident Report 35) with the immediate consequence of the exercise being suspended, and all members getting back to Hordern Stoops as soon as possible (Team member Ken Oakes not favouring the direct route back chosen, as it entailed a very wet boggy patch of moorland)