Responding First

It’s been quite a week.

I was ice-climbing in Vermont and fell on my ice-pick, resulting in a pneumothorax.

I was mountain biking in Utah, acquired a head injury when I crashed, and then fractured my wrist.

I was horseback-riding in West Virginia when my loyal steed, Mr. Bojangles bucked me off, leaving a nasty bruise below my sternum and a twisted ankle.

JUST KIDDING… sort of.*

leg
This is not real!

Back in October, I decided to sign up for a Wilderness First Responder course. For the past 10 days, I have spent countless hours learning how to provide medical care in the backcountry. It’s involved an inordinate amount of book-learning and countless real-world scenarios. I can confidently reduce an anterior shoulder dislocation, splint a wrist using a jacket, and treat high altitude cerebral edema. I brushed up on my CPR skills, learned about handling snake bites, and acquired a ton of other medical knowledge/skills.

The course was intense, but invaluable. Who knows when I’ll need to help out a fellow outdoor enthusiast during the second part of my trip? Who knows when I’ll need to provide skilled assistance to someone in an urban setting? Who knows when I’ll have to practice on myself?

actvar
Snapping a quick selfie with my CPR buddy, Actar

* I am, in fact, completely kidding. In the scenarios we acted out during the course, however, I played the patient who had all of these crazy, and unlucky, experiences.

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