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First Aid Course

Mountaineering-Oriented First Aid

This course is scheduled for February 21-23, 2020. A 2.5 day course to teach you the basics of dealing with injuries and illness in the backcountry, away from professional medical assistance. Prerequisite to graduation from basic climbing, intermediate climbing and other courses. Please sign up for all 3 sessions.

COVID-19: Learn about our most up-to-date guidance for participants and leaders on our COVID-19 Response page. All participants and leaders must agree to the COVID-19 Code of Conduct before participating in this Mountaineers course.

Location of Training: Mountaineers Kitsap Program Center, 1550 Rocky Point Road NW, Bremerton, WA 98312.

Instructors: Dr. Keith Gates, Gretchen Ta, Jerry Logan, Jeff Galey

 Course Goals:

  1. Presentation and discussion of considerations in patient care in a wilderness setting with extended prehospital care times.
  2. Practice in teams, with hands-on activities utilizing typical field equipment, caring for actor patients. 

Prerequisites:  Either a current first aid certification or the certificate generated from taking the American Heart Association's “Heartsaver® First Aid Online Part 1” online training (see ).

Class Outline:

Day 1:


     Rescue considerations
     Difference between WFA, WFR, WEMT, DiMM
     CPR/AED recommendations
     Scope of practice WFA
Patient Assessment BLS, Scene Safety, BSI, Medical Legal (Good Sam Law) 
Circulatory System/shock/ACS
Respiratory System
Day 2:
Nervous System
Spine injuries
Musculoskeletal injuries
Practical application:
     bandaging, splints, lifts/carries, airways (NPA/OPA)
Day 3:
Allergic reactions/anaphylaxis/auto injectors
Heat/hypothermia with avalanche considerations/cold injury/altitude
Common Medical Problems
Psychological First Aid
Medical Kits
Written Exam
Competency: As a result of participating in this training, members will heighten awareness and gain skills necessary for patient care in remote environments.  
Course Requirements

This course has no scheduled activities.

Required Equipment

Course materials:

The course text is NOLS Wilderness Medicine, 6th ed, Schimelpfenig.  Recommend reading  the entire text prior to the classroom session (see Course Outline below).

The following texts will be used as reference materials during the training and discussions.

  1. Mountaineering First Aid, 5th Ed. - Mountaineers Books; Carline, Lentz, Macdonald.
  2. Guidelines for Wilderness Emergency Care, 5th Ed. – Wilderness Medical Society.
  3. Field Guide to Wilderness Medicine, 3rd Ed – MOSBY; Auerbach, Donner, Weiss.
  • What to bring- Equipment required: Standard overnight packs.  Students should be prepared for rain - some scenarios are staged outdoors.  You will get dirty so dress appropriately.  Additionally, students need to bring a first aid kit with a few (at least two) triangle bandages/cravats (; bandaging materials (which can be made from old sheets or other excess material or elastic bandages); several pieces of cloth that can be folded into 4”x4” dressings; and trauma scissors (something like Sunday there will be scenarios that will require cutting off clothes to help determine the extent of patient injuries; make sure you have a safe means of cutting clothes. Other items typical in a pack and useful for first aid: a headlamp, ground tarp, things to splint- walking sticks, ski poles, things you normally carry and of course the ten essentials.
  • Did I mention: Wear warm clothes and bring rain gear on Sunday as some  scenarios may be outdoors. 
  • Meals: The Mountaineers will provide snacks, coffee, and hot water, however students will need to provide their own meals. There are some options within 1-2 miles 
Course Materials

You must register for this course to see course materials.