EMERGICARE MEDICAL TRAINING, LLC
(Minnesota Special Transportation Services)
Backcountry Trail Patrol Mountain Bike Special Event Team
In 1995, three rangers from the newly formed Anoka County Park Ranger Bicycle Patrol (A First Responder and two EMTs) were asked to assist with safety and First Aid at the Twin Cities' first mountain biking expo, at Buck Hill in Burnsville, MN. Riding the trails, the patrol came across a young woman in severe respiratory distress, suffering from an asthma attack. While one ranger initiated medical care for the woman, a second raced down the hill to summon paramedics and the third safely diverted bike traffic onto a side trail, away from the scene. When the paramedics arrived, the rangers helped them carry their equipment up the hill to the scene, package the patient and carry her back down to the ambulance. During the 2.5 mile trip to the hospital, the patient went into respiratory arrest two times, but the medics were able to revive her successfully, which the event director to this day attributes to the rapid intervention of the patrolling rangers on the scene. That auspicious start showed that there was a need for volunteer mountain bike patrollers at events and on the trails in the region. Early the next week the Lead Ranger contacted NORBA, which had started the National Mountain Bike Patrol program a few months before, and the North-Central Mountain Bike Patrol became the sixth member of the new NMBP.
In 1996, after working some local events, the patrollers were invited to help out at the Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival, a race that draws 2500 racers and at least that many spectators and supporters. In the course of sweeping the shorter, 16 mile portion of the race, the patrol members assisted with injuries ranging from a chin laceration to a spectator who was run over by several bikes when she wandered out on the race course and fell off her bike. When the race was over, the event's EMS director told them, "Even if we forget to call you next year, show up!" and thus began the patrol's continuing involvement with the Midwest's largest mountain bike race. After that, requests started coming in from other events ranging from social rides like the Minnesota Ironman Ride, and the St. Paul Bike Classic, to the BLAST, Minnesota State Championship and Wisconsin Off-Road Race series. When the NORBA National Championships qualifier races were held at a ski resort near Red Wing, MN, NMBP patrollers from Minnesota and Wisconsin were there, and were first on the scene when a rider went down in a sudden thunderstorm, and helped evacuate him on an ATV, when the 4x4 rescue truck became stuck in the deep mud. The patrol worked the race all three years that it was held in Minnesota. In 1998, North-Central was invited to assist in the "crown jewel" of Minnesota sporting events, the 10,000 runner Twin Cities Marathon, where patrollers ride the 26-mile course from Minneapolis to St. Paul and the state capital grounds with the runners. In addition to their normal first aid equipment, each teams of two riders carries an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED) and have been on hand for numerous medical events, including a cardiac arrest and numerous heat exhaustion cases in the unseasonably warm 2006 race.
In 2004, the old North-Central patrol, which had already spun off two new patrol groups in Wisconsin, split into two patrols that work in more specific geographic areas; the Twin Cities and the northern National Forests, but they all still come together to work the major events. The Backcountry Trail Patrol coordinates NMBP participation in the major events like the Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival, the Twin Cities Marathon, and in the winter as ski patrol, the City of Lakes Loppet Urban Ski Marathon. Although the Backcountry Trail Patrol is normally thought of as a mountain bike patrol, the roots of the patrol go back to 1992, when the same park rangers who would start the bike patrol three years later, were given responsibility for the volunteer ski patrol in the Anoka County Parks. The rangers and volunteers went to training with the Hennepin (now Three Rivers) Parks volunteer patrol and the National Ski Patrol at Wild River State Park, and what would become the Backcountry Trail Patrol was born. The local units handle races and other events in their respective locales. All patrollers are trained in First Aid and CPR, and many have First Responder, Emergency Medical Technician and Wilderness Medical certification as well. If you are interested in being part of this all-volunteer team effort. or would like to arrange for mountain bike Special Event Team assistance of your event, please Click to send us e-mail
Click Here to read the article on Patient Assessment for EMS bike teams
Emergicare is proud to sponsor the Backcountry Trail Patrol Mountain Bike Special Event Team