Sunday, June 25, 2017
The Week of the Bike
The last week I got to be in the bike patrol training that was put on by the rangers in the valley. It took place from Monday to Wednesday and consisted of bike familiarization, balance work on the bike, and teaching basic tactics when running a patrol on the bikes. It was a very interesting and fun time, and it allowed me to get some time back in the mountain bike seat as I haven’t been able to do any mountain biking in years. The training took us all over the valley showing locations where the bike was an essential tool that the patrol officer can use to make the patrol more efficient and allow for him to reach areas the vehicles can’t go. On Tuesday while doing some patrols on the bike after our balance section we were called first to a possible raft in the water which took is all over the valley looking for this raft. From there we had a child who lost her group in one of the hotels taking us on the other side of the valley. Then after reuniting her with her group we were called to a scene where a biker had taken a bad fall while biking where he wasn’t supposed to be and had to be carried to the ambulance and then air lifted out of the park. I got to assist in the carry out of the subject then had to ride over to the landing zone and work the security for that, making sure none of the visitors walked out into the field we were trying to use. The training was very fun and allowed me to learn new skills while also getting real world experience in skills I learned during the school year.
Thursday I got to go out with the Intercept team that the park has to look for marijuana grows inside the park boundaries. For this we bushwhacked out almost 2 miles in some of the densest brush I have every attempted to hike in. After making it to our position we looked across the canyon at the suspected location of the grow. On our way back we took a detour and looked for a lost tripod that the brush had claimed the week prior.
Friday I spent the day with the traffic guys helping to direct the thousands of visitors who come into the valley daily. This was tough work and called for high levels of patience and composer in order to keep your cool while having to deal with some of the things the visitors do. I spent most of my day talking to the visitors at the crosswalk and helping them find their way in the park and in the surrounding areas. It was fun to test the knowledge of the area that I had after only four weeks in this section of the United States.
The weekend my roommates and I went to a local lake and rented a canoe so that we could go to a couple well known swimming spots that the lake has to offer. We also had a summer solstice cookout and had people from all different divisions of the park stop by and for some food and conversation. This week was fun and packed but is nothing like what next week has in store.