Q&A with author Hal Clifford
Do young rescuers get too enthusastic?
Are team members all volunteers?
I would like to know if the rescue team is volunteer or if the team members receive compensation. Also, how would I find out about possibly volunteering or applying?
Charles Imig, Jr.
Hal responds: Most rescue teams are volunteer, and all those associated with the Mountain Rescue Association are volunteer. The Falling Season is a book about precisely this subject--what brings people to the Aspen team, and how they manage to work together, however imperfectly. The simplest analogy is that mountain rescue teams are like volunteer fire departments, albeit a little slower and less likely to get burned.
In most states the county sheriff is responsible for search and rescue operations. If you want to get involved where you live, contact your sheriff and find out what his or her arrangement is. You may find there's a volunteer team in your area.