August 29, 2015

From Baxter State Park Facebook Page Aug. 29, 2015 11:15 a.m.

From BSP Facebook post Aug. 29, 2015 11:15 a.m.
Search effort continues for overdue hiker in Baxter Park.
Baxter Park Rangers, Maine Warden Service personnel, Maine Forest Service aircraft, Civil Air Patrol, and volunteer search and rescue personnel searched on Friday, August 28 for a 78 year old Virginia hiker who failed to return from a Thursday, August 27 hike of the OJI-Coe-Marston Trail loop in Baxter State Park.
Eighty people are now engaged in an expanded search for John Lyon of Dumfries, VA. Search resources include ground searchers, dog teams, and fixed wing and rotor aircraft. Lyon was last seen on the Mt. Coe Trail north of the peak of Mt. Coe around 1:30 pm on Thursday before leaving his three hiking companions, also from Virginia, to hike ahead.
The Maine Warden Service has established a Command Post at the Marston Trailhead on the west side of Baxter State Park approximately 16 miles north of Togue Pond Gate on the Park Tote Road.
The Marston and Mt. Coe Trails have been closed to public hiking to facilitate the search effort. Parking at the entrance to the Slaughter Pond Trail has also been suspended for the period of the search.

August 20, 2015

Wilderness First Aid Class Offered Oct. 3-4

Wilderness First Aid
by: Wilderness Medical Associates

Date: October 3-4, 2015

Location: Kingfield Fire Department, Kingfield, Maine.

Time: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday & Sunday

Cost: $199

Photos from 2010 WMA, WFA class at Industry FD and from the WMA WFR class at CVA in 2014.

The best and most comprehensive course of its kind to offer relevant and realistic first-aid training for seasonal outdoor activities or short term wilderness endeavors and pursuits.  Wilderness First Aid is a two-day introduction to general medical concepts and basic life support skills. It is targeted to the outdoor enthusiast on day trips or short adventures. The course is taught by professional instructors with significant patient care and backcountry experience.

Taught by: Wilderness Medical Associates

Sponsored by: Franklin Search & Rescue (FSAR)

Course topics:
Patient Assessment System; CPR; Circulatory System; Nervous System; Respiratory System; Fractures, Stable Injuries; Splints 1-Extremities; Hypothermia; Hyperthermia and Heat Illness; Near Drowning; Lightning Injuries; Wounds and Burns; Anaphylaxis; Lifting, Moving Extrication; Patient Carries; Backcountry Medicine


This course is scheduled for two days or 16 hours of instructional and practice time. Upon successful completion students will receive certification in Wilderness First Aid and Adult CPR.

Students will receive the following books on this course:

  • Wilderness First Aid Guide
  • SOAP Notebook;
  • The Outward Bound Wilderness First-Aid Handbook


Successful completion with certification is based on 100% attendance, satisfactory performance on homework assignments and written quizzes, demonstrated proficiency with practical skills, and a successful grade on a final written exam.


Students must be at least 16 years old to participate in this course. Those under 18 years of age require the written consent of a parent or guardian.

To register:
Contact FSAR team member Melissa Shea:

(207) 319-9583

August 16, 2015

FSAR Rescue Trailer

When FSAR first started over a decade ago, we had no gear-team gear at all. Over the years, as the organization evolved and grew, FSAR has acquired tools and equipment to help us better fulfill our mission. This equipment has been stored in our storage cabinets at the Kingfield Fire Department.  Last fall with the generous support of FCEMA, we were able to purchase a box trailer.  The trailer now houses the bulk of the team gear which can now be transported right to the staging area of an incident. Earlier this month, John, Pat and Barry began phase 1 of the trailer outfitting process by laying out and fabricating tie-downs, straps, shelving and anchor points for our key pieces of SAR gear.  Pat also attached the FSAR decals to the trailer sides. 

We would like to include additional logos and recognition of FSAR team supporters. The Franklin County Emergency Management Agency (FCEMA) purchased the trailer and the new generator, their graphics will be displayed on the trailer.

The FSAR board is looking for feedback on other supporters we might want to include on the side of the trailer. Suggestions so far have been:

  • Kingfield Fire Department
  • Sugarloaf Employees Charitable Trust
  • Kibby TIFF
  •  Franklin County Fireman's Association

Who should we include?

August 11, 2015

Moxie Falls Search Monday, August 10, 2015

FSAR, along with all MASAR ground search teams, and the MESARD SAR Dog team, was activated around 3 a.m. Monday morning to assist the Maine Warden Service in the search for a missing 29 year old woman. She had gone white water rafting earlier in the day and had joined some friends in the short hike to view the falls. She was last seen by her friends around 4:30 Sunday afternoon on an observation platform, in a bathing suit, overlooking Moxie Falls. When her party returned from swimming below the falls, she was gone.

4 FSAR members responded to the call with the new FSAR rescue trailer. A group of 10 MASAR searchers had just been given their search grid assignment and were packing up to head out when the phone call came in that the woman had been found alive. She was found at the confluence of Moxie Stream and the Kennebec River which was right in the middle of the search grid we were given.

Delighted about the happy ending to the search, 8 MASAR searchers hiked down to view the falls which were beautiful.

A good write up of the event is here:

About 10 MASAR members were headed out for the first grid search, when the call came in that she had been found.

Peter from MDI SAR talks with Lt. Adam while the missing woman's family celebrates in the background.

Checking out the falls after the successful conclusion of the search.

July 13, 2015

Little Bigelow Carry-Out July 8, 2015


Activated:  2 PM
Clear of the scene: 5:10 PM

FSAR was requested to respond by CVFD to assist in the rescue & evacuation of a male hiker in his 60s with a possible broken finger and a knee injury as a result of a fall on A.T on Little Bigelow Mtn.

When FSAR arrived, the patient had already begun the litter ride off the mountain. Due to the large amount of responding rescuers, we were able to switch-out littler handlers frequently. This contributed to lower rescuer fatigue and increased safety and also to a relatively quick evacuation. Assisting in the carry-out was: NorthStar Ambulance, New Portland FD, CVFD, MWS, MFS, and FSAR. In addition, the Chewonki School counselors and campers, who encountered the injured hiker soon after his fall, assisted by transporting the patient's dog back to the trailhead and then distributing waters to the rescuers on the trail.  

We used the FSAR 'wheel' to move the litter for the second half (more flat and smooth trail) of the carry-out and it worked beautifully. FSAR fielded a respectable 4 rescuers for the call.

Everyone made it back to the trailhead without injury.

Total litter carry was approximately 1.5 miles.


FSAR at Baxter SP July 3-7

FSAR At Baxter
July 3-5 2015

  • Jimmy July 3-5
  • Mit  July 3-5
  • John R. (July 3-7)

Mileage from KFD (1 way) 165
John drove all the way from central PA to do the Baxter gig!

We arrived at the Togue Pond Crew Cabin around 3 p.m. on Friday, moved in and oriented ourselves. SAR duty is a bit surreal in that most everyone is visiting the park to hike big mountains; SAR members love to hike big things but we cannot!  We are asked to hold back and be within 60 minutes of our vehicle in case there is a call and we are needed.

Over the weekend, we visited 4 campgrounds, Roaring Brook, Abol and Dacey Pond and Katahdin Stream.  We checked out the trail heads, chatted with the campground rangers, and talked with many park guests. We chatted with law enforcement rangers Rob, Mike W. and Stewart and the Togue gate personnel. We were always in the FSAR bright orange ‘uniform’ which got people’s attention!

We spent Saturday morning conducting some rope rescue evolutions at Little Niagra Falls in the south western part of the park. In this training we worked with rock pro (cams & nuts) to create anchors, did belay practice and did some rappelling with a few different types of hardware. We swapped over to a 3:1 mechanical advantage raise system. We stopped a number of times to talk with park guests and to explain why we were in the park. People were appreciative of our volunteer efforts.

Both evenings, John and Mit went canoeing, we all prepared some delicious communal meals, talked about RR gear, listened to some great mountaineering stories and did some knot training. One of us slept in a hammock, another in a backpacking tent under the pines next to the Pond and one slept in the bunkhouse. After a theft incident last year, we removed all of our gear from the tents in the morning and kept it locked up in the bunkhouse during the day.

Jimmy was always on (good humored) litter-garbage patrol and picked up a fair amount of trash wherever we went including a used diaper and a used Q-tip (ewww)!

We had beautiful sunny and partly cloudy weather. Daytime temps. were in the 70’s and nighttime temps we in the comfortable 50’s. We encountered a few light sprinkles on Sunday but not enough to knock down the road dust.

We were sent on a mission by the information center ranger who smelled smoke Sat. evening.  We toured the abutting day-use park at Togue Pond and found one family had build a (smoky) campfire in the BBQ pit to cook on. We had a nice chat with them and reported back that all was well.

We went on 4 separate short hikes to: Little Niagara Falls, Abol Falls, Katahdin Stream Falls and stone steps and to Sandy Stream Pond where we saw a larger-than-life (animatronic?) moose feeding in the water.

It has become clear to me that unless we are actively responding to a call in the park, the primary mission of SAR personnel is to be park ambassadors for the visitors. To answer questions, to talk about safety, hiking min. required equipment (flashlight, water, turn around time, good preparation) and be friendly and helpful.

Having driven all the way from PA where he is working this summer, John decided to stay 2 additional days in the crew cabin at Togue Pond. He continued SAR duty, carrying a radio all the time and doing some hiking.

Overall it was a great weekend! -Mit

FSAR radios charging in prep for weekend duty.

 Jimmy used the weekend to learn some new photography skills with his new camera. 

We ate well! 

 Evening paddle.

 Jimmy was awakened by a pair of amorous pileated woodpeckers. 

 Catching a glimpse of the Double Top from the Hunt Trail.

 3:1 and Little Niagera

 Jimmy conducts one of the most important roles we have, visitor relations which always included some safety talk. 

 One of BSP animatronic moose displays.

 Jimmy really got the hang of the long exposure flowing water shots. 

 3:1 with break prussik.

 Looking into North Basin from Sandy Stream Pond.

Little Niagera. 

Jimmy and John set rock pro.  


 There was always a good story being told by someone. 

 Double Top from Dacey bridge.

Dacey Pond with Katahdin.