Monday, May 15, 2023

National Police Week


National Police Week

This week, National Police Week, is dedicated to honoring the brave men and women who selflessly serve and protect their communities everyday. National Police Week is always held during the week of May 15th after President John F. Kennedy, in 1961, declared May 15th as National Peace Officers Memorial Day.

National Peace Officers Memorial Day


In 1962, President Kennedy proclaimed May 15 as National Peace Officers Memorial Day and the calendar week in which May 15 falls, as National Police Week. Established by a joint resolution of Congress in 1962, National Police Week pays special recognition to those law enforcement officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty for the safety and protection of others. Remembering Michael Staples (USFS, Chippewa N.F.), Kristine Fairbanks (USFS), Jason Crisp (USFS), Margaret Anderson (NPS), Ryan Weltman (NPS, from MN), and Kristopher Eggle (NPS) and all Law Enforcement Officers from all agencies who have given their lives in the line of duty.

Thursday, April 20, 2023

National Volunteer Week 2023: Discover the Forest With Us!

The Backcountry Trail Patrol Association, is a not-for-profit organization formed in 1996 as the North-Central Mountain Bike Patrol (NCMBP), which provides the U.S. Forest Service, Isanti County (MN) County Parks and other requesting agencies with volunteer manpower dedicated to protecting trail users and forest resources through service and backcountry safety education. The primary role of the Backcountry Patrol to serve as "Ambassadors to the Forest". The Patrol also assists by providing first aid/medical support at events related to and taking part on park and forest lands.

Mountain Bike Patrol volunteers patrol many of the Chequamegon Area Mountain Bike Association trails on the National Forest. Originally created as a program of the NCMBP, the Backcountry Patrol initially started in 1999 by helping to develop, promote, and patrol the Simpson Creek Trails on the Chippewa National Forest in north-central Minnesota. It incorporated as a separate entity in 2003, and assumed the non-event related functions of NCMBP later that year. Over time, the patrol also took on the event coverage roles of NCMBP as well.

Patrol members count the number of visitors, check for hazardous conditions, and educate, assist and inform all trail users. They also perform light trail maintenance, pick up trash and are available to provide first aid/medical and basic mechanical assistance to any forest visitor. In the winter season, these activities may be done using fat-bikes (mountain bikes with 4-inch or wider tires). snowshoes or cross-country skis.

Volunteer with BTPA! 

Chances are you’ve run into some of our Volunteer Patrol members in their bright red jerseys on the trail, but did you know that you could become a volunteer yourself? We are recruiting volunteers for this year and we have a late start on training because of all the snow this winter.

Members of the Mountain Bike Unit patrol team are a dedicated group of men and women who not only enjoy the activity of mountain biking, but also possess a desire to proactively promote awareness and responsible trail use for hikers, cyclists, and equestrians on the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest Great Divide District and Isanti County Parks

At its most basic, a trail patrol volunteer has a responsibility to schedule a minimum of eight hours of patrol each month between Memorial Day and the Chequamegon Mountain Bike Festival in mid-September. his may be done on the trails, or as a part of event coverage. During any given patrol, they may be called upon to perform a wide variety of duties; from supplying directions and offering maps and information, to giving basic first aid, to encouraging or exacting compliance with the  rules and regulations — even contacting and coordinating the resources needed to respond to emergency situations that may arise.

The patrol is not law enforcement, but they do work in partnership and communication with the authorized law enforcement agencies and as such are responsible for observing and recognizing any acts that may constitute a potential health hazard to the safety of forest resources and visitors.

For more information on patrol membership, contact any patrol member or email "BACKOUNTRY (at) TRAILPATROL.ORG"

Wednesday, November 2, 2022

Hypothermia (From US Forest Service website)



hypothermia stepsWhen exposed to cold temperatures, your body begins to lose heat faster than it can produce. Prolonged exposure to cold will eventually use up your body’s stored energy, resulting in hypothermia, or abnormally low body temperature.

Body temperature that is too low affects the brain, making the victim unable to think clearly or move well. This makes hypothermia particularly dangerous since a person may not know it is happening and won’t be able to do anything about it.

Hypothermia is most likely at very cold temperatures, but it can occur even at cool temperatures above 40 degrees Fahrenheit if a person becomes chilled from rain, sweat, or submersion in cold water.

Victims of hypothermia are most often:

  • Elderly people with inadequate food, clothing, or heating
  • Babies sleeping in cold bedrooms
  • People who remain outdoors for long periods — the homeless, hikers, hunters, etc.
  • People who drink alcohol or use illicit drugs.

How do you prevent hypothermia?

  • Before you spend time outside in the cold, do not drink alcohol or smoke.
  • Drink plenty of fluids and get adequate food and rest. Water helps turn calories into heat and food high in carbohydrates helps keep you powered.
  • Wear proper clothing in cold temperatures to protect your body. These include:
  • Mittens, not gloves.
  • One word: Layers. The outermost clothing layer should be wind-proof and water-resistant; inner layers should be wool or synthetics that are warm when wet. As you get hot and sweat, you can shed a layer or two and still feel comfortable.
  • Two pairs of socks. Wool socks will keep your feet warm even if your boots are wet.
  • Waterproof hiking boots.
  • Scarf and hat that cover the ears to help you avoid major heat loss through the top of your head

What should you avoid?

  • Extremely cold temperatures, especially with high winds. Find shelter.
  • Wet clothes.
  • Poor circulation, which is more likely from age, tight clothing or boots, cramped positions, fatigue, certain medications, smoking, and alcohol.
  • If you have diabetes or circulatory problems, see your doctor regularly and maintain good health habits in order to reduce the risk of blood vessel complications that may put you at risk for hypothermia.

What are the symptoms?

  • Drowsiness
  • Weakness and loss of coordination
  • Pale and cold skin
  • Confusion
  • Uncontrollable shivering, although at extremely low body temperatures, shivering may stop
  • Slowed breathing or heart rate

What should you do?

Take the person’s temperature. If it is below 95 degrees the situation is an emergency, so get medical attention immediately. If medical care is not available, begin warming the person, as follows:

  • Move to a warm room or shelter.
  • Remove any wet clothing from the victim.
  • Warm the center of the body first — chest, neck, head, and groin — using an electric blanket, if available, or warm compresses. Use skin-to-skin contact under loose, dry layers of blankets, clothing, towels, or sheets.
  • Provide the victim with non-alcoholic warm beverages – but no alcohol – to help increase body temperature. Do not try to give beverages to an unconscious person.
  • Keep the person dry and wrapped – including the head and neck – in a warm blanket even if the body temperature has increased.
  • Stay with the person until medical help arrives.

Do not do the following:

  • Do not assume that someone found lying motionless in the cold is already dead.
  • Do not use direct heat (such as hot water, a heating pad, or a heat lamp) to warm the person.
  • Do not give the person alcohol.

How serious can it get?

A person with severe hypothermia may be unconscious and may not seem to have a pulse or to be breathing. CPR should be administered in that case and continue until while the victim is being warmed, until the victim responds or medical aid becomes available. In some cases, hypothermia victims who appear to be dead can be successfully resuscitated.

Source: Forest Service research; National Institutes of Health