This non-profit, all-volunteer organization partners with the Inyo County Sheriff’s department,to provide search and rescue services to all reaches of Inyo County, CA.
The team is called upon in emergency situations to assist members of the public in distress in areas inaccessible by paved roads. We also assist Search and Rescue teams in other counties of California when additional rescuers are needed for large scale or complex missions.
Inyo County is home to the highest and lowest points in the lower 48 states … Mt. Whitney at 14,495 feet above sea level and Badwater Basin at 282 feet below sea level in Death Valley. The Eastern Sierra is a rugged and sparsely populated area of California with diverse geographical terrain and extreme weather conditions. It is a popular tourist destination with over 5 million visitors annually.
The team responds to an average of 50 emergencies per year, the majority of these occurring on the Mt. Whitney trail during the summer months.
The Inyo SAR team is trained in three broad disciplines of search and rescue:
- Technical Rock Rescue
- Winter / Avalanche Rescue
- Search & Tracking
Certification in these disciplines is done by the Mountain Rescue Association (MRA), of which Inyo SAR is a member organization.
Members of the team also receive ongoing training in basic first aid and CPR, water rescue, communications and incident command. Individual members train in specialized areas such as K9 search, scuba diving, advanced rock climbing, EMT, Wilderness First Responder (WFR) and other areas of expertise.
Membership is open to any person over the age of 18 who has the desire and willingness to help others in need. No specific skills are required and training is provided to all members throughout the year. All activities are undertaken on an opt-in basis and no-one is expected to participate in any activity beyond their level of comfort and safety. Individual and team safety is the primary concern of every team member.
Inyo SAR operates almost entirely from donations made to the team. If you would like to make a financial contribution, please visit our Donate page.
To learn more about how to join or help Inyo SAR click here.