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Just when you thought you'd seen it all. (Or what is the weirdest thing you've seen patrolling? - Page 5

post #121 of 128
Thread Starter 

It's not weird, it's not really sad either.  It just happens from time to time.  

The guy with the injured knee knew why he had to wait.  Chances are, it did not bother him all that much.  I really doubt that he wanted to change places.

Originally Posted by NorSkiRuns View Post

Dunno whether this is wierd or sad:


But I was once riding a lift and saw a team of patrolmen doing triage on a hill.  There were two, nearly simultaneous accidents about 50 yards apart on the same hill.  One accident involved a bad knee injury - the other involved a broken pelvis.  After a quick review of the injuries - they dedicated themselves to the pelvis.


I felt badly for the knee injury who had to lay there for an extra five minutes or so for the second team to arrive while the first team tended to the broken pelvis.


post #122 of 128


Originally Posted by Dean View Post

It's not weird, it's not really sad either.  It just happens from time to time.  

The guy with the injured knee knew why he had to wait.  Chances are, it did not bother him all that much.  I really doubt that he wanted to change places.

It's just priorities.  Same priority system I taught my kids for eating veggies; worstest firstest.


I'm not a patroller either but I have been the guy with the injured knee that had to wait in a remarkably similar situation.


3 years ago I was at Tuckermans Ravine and tore my ACL & MCL.  About the same time around 100' away, I guy did a rag doll fall and broke his pelvis.  The Forest Rangers/Patrol were told I had a knee injury but I was otherwise OK.  They got the broken pelvis in the sled and once they got him to The Sherburne trail in the sled, one came back for me.  After a quick assessment (we were all pretty sure it was my acl) he put a splint on my leg and gave me a choice: The sled would be back in about 2-3 hours and the Cat was down for repairs.  I could either wait for the sled or try to hike out.  I would only have to get to HoJo's and then a snowmobile ride to the visitor center.


I chose the latter and what normally would have been a 15 minute walk, ended up taking me 2 1/2 hours.  I was using my ski poles for stability and fell a couple more times.  Each time it hurt more than the last.  Once to HoJo's, I waited a little bit more and got a ride to the bottom on the back of a snowmobile.  Felt bad for my friend as he had to hike my pack and skis to HoJos and then go back for his and take the Sherburne all the way down (2.5 miles of moguls!).


Parts of the trail wasn't that bad but some of it was an incredible challenge; physically and mentally (how the heck am I going to get down that with only one leg working?!).  There were a few areas that I knew if I slipped, I could easily fall 30 feet or so.


The Patrollers and Rangers made the right choice in taking care of the guy with the broken pelvis.  He was in way worse shape than me.  I'm sure they would have made the similar decisioin even if I had gotten hurt first.  I left in my firends car and the other guy left in an ambulance.




post #123 of 128

Also at Tuckermans Ravine we had this incident:


About 25 years ago I was traversing the steep upper snowfield above the headwall and the near vertical lip by turning

my feet sideways and digging the toe of the ski boot into the snow.  This careful slow prodding annoyed the guy behind

me so I stepped aside. This guy continues on at a faster pace but I notice no use of the boot toes and the edges are barely

digging in.  I yell after him that he ought to consider digging his toes in.


He ignores my comments and after continuing 20 feet he slips. Starts an uncontrolled slide face down  the full length of the upper

snowfield then over the lip then the full length of the lower headwall past Lunch rocks to a   point 5 feet from where the snow ends

into huge rocks. In lotal lockjaw mode I watch him laying there motionless 1/4 mile away thinking he is dead or seriously injured.


Then to my complete amazement gets up slowly and appears to have little or no injuries.


post #124 of 128

I'm a rookie at a southwest ski area where we get many folks who've quite literally never seen snow before.  Last week, I'm in the head at the base and a guest says "That sounded like a gunshot".  Shortly afterwards in the patrol room, the radio chatter gets interesting, with security reporting 'firearm recovered, S.O. deputies en route code 3' near the bottom of the hill in between two of our popular intermediate runs.  Apparently these folks (not US citizens incidentally) thought it was just fine to build a snowman and blast away in between runs as they were outside the city limits.  S.O. arrives, speaks their language, confiscates weapon, writes citation, scene over.  None of the other patrol staff (150 years or so combined experience) ever heard of such an incident.  Is there a radio harness that will hold a Glock?

post #125 of 128
Thread Starter 

Well, it does happen to the best.... and the not so best.  Sometimes it even happens to me.  It was -20 degrees Celsius and the a bit of fresh powder had fallen, but the fresh snow was very sticky.  In these conditions, a few of us at our little hill were heading down at my usual speed, (given the time of night and the fact that there were no clients, my usual speed could be described as breakneck) when I hit a very very VERY fast patch.  So I braked hard, caught an edge and ended up going down the hill backwards.  At ludicrous speed.  In the terrain park.  (at this point, I think you can see where this is going)  So down I went, in as someone in this thread has accurately described as a yard sale fall.  Poles and skis everywhere.  The other patrollers came after me, stopped, watched me get slowly up, and being patrollers, started laughing their heads off.  At least, they did ask me if I was OK first.  So then the butt of their laughter decided it was time to leave, so I tried to put on his skis, with tried being the operative word.  The uphill ski went on effortlessly, but the downhill ski proved problematic.  So I leaned with the slope, slammed my foot down and tried to ski away... except that my foot never got into the binding.  So the lean continued and I ended up doing a passable imitation of a freshly cut pine tree... a slow majestic fall followed by a very ungraceful slide down the hill a bit.  To add insult to injury, some joker then got on the radio and asked, 'Do you need the patrol?'  My partner replied, 'Oh no, it's ok, we're already on the scene.'  

At I least I added entertainment to a really slow night.

post #126 of 128
Originally Posted by Mdskier View Post

I'm not a patroller but this happened in the patrol room years ago at Sun Valley.


Earlier on a late season day I fell in soft mush and lost my prescription glasses on a double black

run near the bottom of the River run lift. I searched to no avail then returned with spare glasses to

search again, but found the run closed.  Turns out they close it most every spring day at noon when

the mush gets too deep.


I went to the patrol hut at top to ask if they had a metal detector and/or if I could search the closed run.


The patroller said I  might do it but I'd better not since a bear in hibernation (right near my glasses!)

was about to emerge for the year.  The other patrollers broke out in roaring  laughter  and pointed to a newspaper

article on the wall. I read from the news clip that the patroller I was talking to was once skiing past this bears den, the

bear came out and ran after him skiing down the hill, and someone got a picture of it.


Bear is still guarding my glasses!


bump.  Can't make this stuff up. 30 yrs ago I was a patroller 1 year in VA till the area closed.:rotflmao: 

post #127 of 128

I was on volunteer patrol at Stevens Pass in the 70s.  It was sweep time, night skiing, after 10:00 pm.  My group was sweeping an intermediate lift (Brooks).  We were about 1/4 of the way down when we came across a single skier who had been abandoned by his "friends" who took him to the top of the lift for his first time at the end of the night.  It was his first time skiing and his equipment was not adjusted correctly so that he kept blowing out of his bindings.  He was going nowhere fast.


Some of the more senior patrollers tried to help him navigate, but he had lost his cool and was in no mood to learn to ski at that time.  The SOP for this situation was to put him in a sled and get him off of the hill, but the nearest toboggan was about 1/4 mile away uphill, the chair was shut down, it was cold, it was dark, it was foggy, and we were thirsty.  One of those senior guys (a pro patroller, I think it was the then patrol director) decided to load the guy on his back and ski him down.  My buddy and I were given his skis and poles and told to carry them down.  So, off we go...


Meanwhile, one of the sweep crew from another lift finished their business and skied by the bottom of their lift, which had the light controls.  He waved a friendly wave to his buddy, the lifty, who mistook the wave and shut down the lights for the entire hill.  After all, he'd been waiting in the cold and it was about the right time.  However, our entire sweep team was still on the hill, at night, with clouds and fog so no moon or starlight.  It was BLACK and they couldn't turn the lights back on for about 20 minutes for some technical reason.


The two of us (my buddy and I) were assigned a back trail that was not lighted, but got enough bleed-through illumination that it was sometimes used at night.  When the lights went off we couldn't see anything at all.  We were in the middle of a trail cut from dense forest; one that was not groomed and was full of bumps.  Needless to say, we stopped.  After a while we were able to discern the slightly darker trees at the side of the trail, so with judicious snow plowing and very careful progress we got ourselves out of there.  It was not fun and we extensively used our nautical vocabulary to indicate our emotional state.


Meanwhile, when somebody figured out that one entire lift's worth of sweepers was unaccounted for, people freaked and an army of snow vehicles swarmed the hill looking for us.  Apparently the guy who was riding on the director's shoulders was pitched off when the lights went out and needed a different type of rescue, but, fortunately, he was not injured.


The director lost his job not long after this incident, but I was just a lackey and never found out if it was a contributing factor.  I suspect that it was.

post #128 of 128
^Wow. That qualifies as a shitshow, no question.
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