(CBS4) – As more and more people move to Colorado, rescue crews are seeing their calls increase in the high country. To help, Alpine Rescue Team will be training a new prospective member class beginning in December 2021. This several month training process will prepare individuals with the various skills and knowledge necessary to safely participate in searches and rescues within the counties they will serve: Jefferson, Gilpin and Clear Creek.

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“We’re looking for people that are willing to be trained for all the skills that they need. They love being in the mountains, they want to help other people, and they have the flexibility and they are choosing that life choice to put this into their lives,” said Dawn Wilson with the Alpine Rescue Team.

Currently, the nonprofit organization has 60 members who respond any day or time of the year, at the request of the sheriff’s office. Most often, responding to a 911 call of someone who is lost, injured or stuck in the backcountry. There is no charge for these services, and the prospective members will all be volunteers. Alpine Rescue Team’s services were requested 137 times in 2020, and its members provided over 17,000 hours of volunteerism to the community.

(credit: CBS)

Interested individuals do not need to be experts in navigation, rock climbing or skiing. The team is looking for those who enjoy being outdoors, are willing to learn mountaineering skills, and most importantly — are willing and flexible enough to help others in need in the mountains, no matter the day nor time.

“It’s a lifestyle choice, not just a volunteer thing. It’s not something where you can volunteer once a month. We do training six times a month and missions come any day, any time of the day. So this is a lifestyle change when you commit to Alpine Rescue Team,” Wilson told CBS4’s Dominic Garcia.

More information can be found on Alpine Rescue Team’s website: www.alpinerescueteam.org. Those interested in applying need to attend one of three mandatory informational sessions – August 24th, September 20th, October 18th at 6 PM – where the application will be distributed.

Jesse Sarles