Virginia SAR Conference
When
April 19-22
Where
Holiday Lake 4-H Educational Center
Price
$50 - $300
weeks
4
6
days
0
6
hours
1
0
minutes
4
7
seconds
3
4

“Attending the Virginia Search and Rescue Conference I was amazed to see how many courses were available and the high standard the various search and rescue groups were trained to. At the conference they had overnight wilderness survival training, first aid courses, even a course on self-defence for SAR responders, this was in addition to tracking and signcutting courses, canine and equine SAR and more!”

- Sue Pritchard, New South Wales, Australia, State Emergency Services

Expert Speakers

We've got some of the leading SAR experts in the country in one place just for you! With talks ranging from basic first aid to advanced tracking, we have sessions for everyone!

Mike Maggard

Black Diamond Search & Rescue

Billy Chrimes

Search & Rescue Training Specialist

Virginia Department of Emergency Management

Bob Allam

Piedmont Search & Rescue

Mason Copeland

Tidewater Search & Rescue

Beautiful Venue

Holiday Lake 4-H Educational center is located within the confines of Appomattox-Buckingham State Forest in Virginia. The land was cleared as farmland in the 1880s before being returned to its forested state in the mid-20th century.

Schedule

Our event this year will run over 4 days.
We have special 2-day sessions on Thursday and Friday, and a wide range of talks and presentations on Saturday and Sunday.

April 20, 2017

08:00  -  12:00
New Classroom

Land Navigation Session 1

Two-day workshop that presents the practical land navigation skills needed by the SAR Responder. Workshop consists of classroom instruction as well as outside field exercises. Suggested Equipment: Compass, UTM/USNG plotter. GPS optional.

Click for more information on 'Land Navigation Session 1'
08:00  -  12:00
Dining Room North

Amateur Radio (HAM) Technician Class Session 1

This ham radio class covers the Technician class license, the most basic of the three current license levels. Here’s how this will work. * Get the printed book now. (https://www.amazon.com/ARRL-Ham-Radio-License-Manual/dp/1625950136) * Study the book between now and the first class session. Take several free sample tests online (http://www.eham.net/exams). It does not matter how badly you […]

Click for more information on 'Amateur Radio (HAM) Technician Class Session 1'
08:00  -  12:00
Dining Room South

Terrain Navigator Workshop Session 1

This 16-hour workshop begins with the basic functions and builds on the capabilities of the Terrain Navigator Pro Software’s ability to support and manage the needs for mapping during a search and rescue incident. Users will learn how to integrate GPS information and other software / internet based tools to aid in the planning and […]

Click for more information on 'Terrain Navigator Workshop Session 1'
08:00  -  12:00
Dining Hall Upstairs

Lost Person Behavior Session 1

This course will present the most recent advances in lost person behavior, the latest research, new models of behavior, and several new behavioral modes. Presented by Robert Koester an international leader in search and rescue research, the participants will go into details of actual search missions and the profiles for different groups from abduction to […]

Click for more information on 'Lost Person Behavior Session 1'
08:00  -  12:00
Bunkhouse Kitchen

SOLO Wilderness First Aid Session 1

The SOLO Wilderness First Aid 2-day (16 hrs.) class addresses issues of basic rescuer safety. The patient assessment system, the foundation of the course, trains students to determine what is going on with backcountry patients. Other sessions provide instruction in traumatic situations. Environmental emergencies such as hypothermia and heat injuries are dealt with in great […]

Click for more information on 'SOLO Wilderness First Aid Session 1'
08:00  -  12:00
Amphitheater

Two-Day Semi-Tech Course Session 1

This course provides those personnel with the basic knowledge and skills needed to perform a semi-technical rescue and EVAC using rope, hardware, and systems. Topics of this class will cover the construction, use and care of rope, rope equipment, hardware, construction of mechanical advantage systems, knots, belay and safety systems, anchor systems, and patient packaging. […]

Click for more information on 'Two-Day Semi-Tech Course Session 1'
08:00  -  12:00
Outside

Wilderness Survival for SAR Personnel Session 1

Starting with lecture and hands on skill development, each day ends with a Survival Scenario to test your skills. Designed to familiarize both your body and mind to the stress of a real-world survival situation, this gives you the unparalleled advantage of having “been there, done that” when the time comes. Cost: additional $100.00 for […]

Click for more information on 'Wilderness Survival for SAR Personnel Session 1'
08:00  -  12:00
Nature Center

Crime Scene Preservation Session 1

This course is for the professional Search and Rescue (SAR) volunteers who would be first arriving on a possible crime scene. This class will give an overview of the steps those responders would need to take, so that the crime scene would not be compromised. Description: A two day course focusing on crime scene preservation: […]

Click for more information on 'Crime Scene Preservation Session 1'
13:00  -  18:00
New Classroom

Land Navigation Session 2

Two-day workshop that presents the practical land navigation skills needed by the SAR Responder. Workshop consists of classroom instruction as well as outside field exercises. Suggested Equipment: Compass, UTM/USNG plotter. GPS optional.

Click for more information on 'Land Navigation Session 2'
13:00  -  18:00
Dining Room North

Amateur Radio (HAM) Technician Class Session 2

This ham radio class covers the Technician class license, the most basic of the three current license levels. Here’s how this will work. * Get the printed book now. (https://www.amazon.com/ARRL-Ham-Radio-License-Manual/dp/1625950136) * Study the book between now and the first class session. Take several free sample tests online (http://www.eham.net/exams). It does not matter how badly you […]

Click for more information on 'Amateur Radio (HAM) Technician Class Session 2'
13:00  -  18:00
Dining Room South

Terrain Navigator Workshop Session 2

This 16-hour workshop begins with the basic functions and builds on the capabilities of the Terrain Navigator Pro Software’s ability to support and manage the needs for mapping during a search and rescue incident. Users will learn how to integrate GPS information and other software / internet based tools to aid in the planning and […]

Click for more information on 'Terrain Navigator Workshop Session 2'
13:00  -  18:00
Dining Hall Upstairs

Lost Person Behavior Session 2

This course will present the most recent advances in lost person behavior, the latest research, new models of behavior, and several new behavioral modes. Presented by Robert Koester an international leader in search and rescue research, the participants will go into details of actual search missions and the profiles for different groups from abduction to […]

Click for more information on 'Lost Person Behavior Session 2'
13:00  -  18:00
Bunkhouse Kitchen

SOLO Wilderness First Aid Session 2

The SOLO Wilderness First Aid 2-day (16 hrs.) class addresses issues of basic rescuer safety. The patient assessment system, the foundation of the course, trains students to determine what is going on with backcountry patients. Other sessions provide instruction in traumatic situations. Environmental emergencies such as hypothermia and heat injuries are dealt with in great […]

Click for more information on 'SOLO Wilderness First Aid Session 2'
13:00  -  18:00
Amphitheater

Two-Day Semi-Tech Course Session 2

This course provides those personnel with the basic knowledge and skills needed to perform a semi-technical rescue and EVAC using rope, hardware, and systems. Topics of this class will cover the construction, use and care of rope, rope equipment, hardware, construction of mechanical advantage systems, knots, belay and safety systems, anchor systems, and patient packaging. […]

Click for more information on 'Two-Day Semi-Tech Course Session 2'
13:00  -  18:00
Outside

Wilderness Survival for SAR Personnel Session 2

Starting with lecture and hands on skill development, each day ends with a Survival Scenario to test your skills. Designed to familiarize both your body and mind to the stress of a real-world survival situation, this gives you the unparalleled advantage of having “been there, done that” when the time comes. Cost: additional $100.00 for […]

Click for more information on 'Wilderness Survival for SAR Personnel Session 2'
13:00  -  18:00
Nature Center

Crime Scene Preservation Session 2

This course is for the professional Search and Rescue (SAR) volunteers who would be first arriving on a possible crime scene. This class will give an overview of the steps those responders would need to take, so that the crime scene would not be compromised. Description: A two day course focusing on crime scene preservation: […]

Click for more information on 'Crime Scene Preservation Session 2'

April 21, 2017

08:00  -  12:00
New Classroom

Land Navigation Session 3

Two-day workshop that presents the practical land navigation skills needed by the SAR Responder. Workshop consists of classroom instruction as well as outside field exercises. Suggested Equipment: Compass, UTM/USNG plotter. GPS optional.

Click for more information on 'Land Navigation Session 3'
08:00  -  12:00
Dining Room North

Amateur Radio (HAM) Technician Class Session 3

This ham radio class covers the Technician class license, the most basic of the three current license levels. Here’s how this will work. * Get the printed book now. (https://www.amazon.com/ARRL-Ham-Radio-License-Manual/dp/1625950136) * Study the book between now and the first class session. Take several free sample tests online (http://www.eham.net/exams). It does not matter how badly you […]

Click for more information on 'Amateur Radio (HAM) Technician Class Session 3'
08:00  -  12:00
Dining Room South

Terrain Navigator Workshop Session 3

This 16-hour workshop begins with the basic functions and builds on the capabilities of the Terrain Navigator Pro Software’s ability to support and manage the needs for mapping during a search and rescue incident. Users will learn how to integrate GPS information and other software / internet based tools to aid in the planning and […]

Click for more information on 'Terrain Navigator Workshop Session 3'
08:00  -  12:00
Dining Hall Upstairs

Lost Person Behavior Session 3

This course will present the most recent advances in lost person behavior, the latest research, new models of behavior, and several new behavioral modes. Presented by Robert Koester an international leader in search and rescue research, the participants will go into details of actual search missions and the profiles for different groups from abduction to […]

Click for more information on 'Lost Person Behavior Session 3'
08:00  -  12:00
Bunkhouse Kitchen

SOLO Wilderness First Aid Session 3

The SOLO Wilderness First Aid 2-day (16 hrs.) class addresses issues of basic rescuer safety. The patient assessment system, the foundation of the course, trains students to determine what is going on with backcountry patients. Other sessions provide instruction in traumatic situations. Environmental emergencies such as hypothermia and heat injuries are dealt with in great […]

Click for more information on 'SOLO Wilderness First Aid Session 3'
08:00  -  12:00
Amphitheater

Two-Day Semi-Tech Course Session 3

This course provides those personnel with the basic knowledge and skills needed to perform a semi-technical rescue and EVAC using rope, hardware, and systems. Topics of this class will cover the construction, use and care of rope, rope equipment, hardware, construction of mechanical advantage systems, knots, belay and safety systems, anchor systems, and patient packaging. […]

Click for more information on 'Two-Day Semi-Tech Course Session 3'
08:00  -  12:00
Outside

Wilderness Survival for SAR Personnel Session 3

Starting with lecture and hands on skill development, each day ends with a Survival Scenario to test your skills. Designed to familiarize both your body and mind to the stress of a real-world survival situation, this gives you the unparalleled advantage of having “been there, done that” when the time comes. Cost: additional $100.00 for […]

Click for more information on 'Wilderness Survival for SAR Personnel Session 3'
08:00  -  12:00
Nature Center

Crime Scene Preservation Session 3

This course is for the professional Search and Rescue (SAR) volunteers who would be first arriving on a possible crime scene. This class will give an overview of the steps those responders would need to take, so that the crime scene would not be compromised. Description: A two day course focusing on crime scene preservation: […]

Click for more information on 'Crime Scene Preservation Session 3'
13:00  -  18:00
New Classroom

Land Navigation Session 4

Two-day workshop that presents the practical land navigation skills needed by the SAR Responder. Workshop consists of classroom instruction as well as outside field exercises. Suggested Equipment: Compass, UTM/USNG plotter. GPS optional.

Click for more information on 'Land Navigation Session 4'
13:00  -  18:00
Dining Room North

Amateur Radio (HAM) Technician Class Session 4

This ham radio class covers the Technician class license, the most basic of the three current license levels. Here’s how this will work. * Get the printed book now. (https://www.amazon.com/ARRL-Ham-Radio-License-Manual/dp/1625950136) * Study the book between now and the first class session. Take several free sample tests online (http://www.eham.net/exams). It does not matter how badly you […]

Click for more information on 'Amateur Radio (HAM) Technician Class Session 4'
13:00  -  18:00
Dining Room South

Terrain Navigator Workshop Session 4

This 16-hour workshop begins with the basic functions and builds on the capabilities of the Terrain Navigator Pro Software’s ability to support and manage the needs for mapping during a search and rescue incident. Users will learn how to integrate GPS information and other software / internet based tools to aid in the planning and […]

Click for more information on 'Terrain Navigator Workshop Session 4'
13:00  -  18:00
Dining Hall Upstairs

Lost Person Behavior Session 4

This course will present the most recent advances in lost person behavior, the latest research, new models of behavior, and several new behavioral modes. Presented by Robert Koester an international leader in search and rescue research, the participants will go into details of actual search missions and the profiles for different groups from abduction to […]

Click for more information on 'Lost Person Behavior Session 4'
13:00  -  18:00
Bunkhouse Kitchen

SOLO Wilderness First Aid Session 4

The SOLO Wilderness First Aid 2-day (16 hrs.) class addresses issues of basic rescuer safety. The patient assessment system, the foundation of the course, trains students to determine what is going on with backcountry patients. Other sessions provide instruction in traumatic situations. Environmental emergencies such as hypothermia and heat injuries are dealt with in great […]

Click for more information on 'SOLO Wilderness First Aid Session 4'
13:00  -  18:00
Amphitheater

Two-Day Semi-Tech Course Session 4

This course provides those personnel with the basic knowledge and skills needed to perform a semi-technical rescue and EVAC using rope, hardware, and systems. Topics of this class will cover the construction, use and care of rope, rope equipment, hardware, construction of mechanical advantage systems, knots, belay and safety systems, anchor systems, and patient packaging. […]

Click for more information on 'Two-Day Semi-Tech Course Session 4'
13:00  -  18:00
Outside

Wilderness Survival for SAR Personnel Session 4

Starting with lecture and hands on skill development, each day ends with a Survival Scenario to test your skills. Designed to familiarize both your body and mind to the stress of a real-world survival situation, this gives you the unparalleled advantage of having “been there, done that” when the time comes. Cost: additional $100.00 for […]

Click for more information on 'Wilderness Survival for SAR Personnel Session 4'
13:00  -  18:00
Nature Center

Crime Scene Preservation Session 4

This course is for the professional Search and Rescue (SAR) volunteers who would be first arriving on a possible crime scene. This class will give an overview of the steps those responders would need to take, so that the crime scene would not be compromised. Description: A two day course focusing on crime scene preservation: […]

Click for more information on 'Crime Scene Preservation Session 4'

April 22, 2017

08:00  -  09:45
Dining Room South

Alzheimers Searches

Alzheimer and Autism, the difficult searches!!  Learn and understand the reasons behind the extreme urgency of these searches, their uniqueness, and why we are on the way to an epidemic of both!

Click for more information on 'Alzheimers Searches'
08:00  -  09:45
Bunkhouse Kitchen
08:00  -  11:45
Dining Hall Upstairs
10:00  -  11:45
Dining Room North

GPS Utilization and Management

Think you know how to use your GPS?  Bring your GPS and attend this two-hour track for helpful hints, and problem solving.  Go through the course and learn how your GPS can be another tool in your toolbox.

Click for more information on 'GPS Utilization and Management'
10:00  -  11:45
Dining Room South

Autisim Searches

Alzheimer and Autism, the difficult searches!!  Learn and understand the reasons behind the extreme urgency of these searches, their uniqueness, and why we are on the way to an epidemic of both!

Click for more information on 'Autisim Searches'
10:00  -  11:45
New Classroom

Searching for Clandestine Graves

Since 2003, Virginia has seen a steady increase in the number of searches for human remains and clandestine graves being the primary effort of the search.  As a professional resource all aspects of SAR personnel from the search team member, base personnel, up to and including the Search Mission Coordinator, should know what to look […]

Click for more information on 'Searching for Clandestine Graves'
12:00  -  13:00
Dining Room
13:00  -  14:45
Dining Room South

GIS for SAR

An overview of advanced tools using both open source and subscription/licensed software packages to assist with multi-operational period searches.  Terrain analysis for cell phone pings, terrain feature offsets, mobility analysis, as well as uses for GIS in disasters will be a few of the topics covered.

Click for more information on 'GIS for SAR'
13:00  -  14:45
Amphitheater

Stop the Bleed

A nationwide course sponsored by National Association of EMTs based on the need to train US citizen how to control critical bleeding caused by any activity.

Click for more information on 'Stop the Bleed'
13:00  -  16:45
Outside

Land Nav Exercise

Need a refresher? Forgotten it all?  Come to this 4 hr Land Nav refresher and sharpen your skills, or learn something new!

Click for more information on 'Land Nav Exercise'
13:00  -  14:45
Dining Hall Upstairs

Community Involvement

Many jurisdictions find themselves overwhelmed with untrained and unaffiliated volunteers when it comes to high profile missing persons cases. It is human nature to want to help, but it can place a substantial burden on the already stressed search and rescue and law enforcement professionals. This presentation will discuss strategies for developing relationships with community-based […]

Click for more information on 'Community Involvement'
13:00  -  14:45
Bunkhouse Kitchen

Dave Canterbury’s 10 C’s of Survival Adapted for SAR Personnel

This presentation is designed to demonstrate The 10 C’s of Survival, as designed by “Dual Survival” star, Dave Canterbury, and presented by Donald Green.  The 10 C’s (Cover, Combustion, Cutting, Container, Cordage, Canvas Needle, Cotton, Cargo Tape, Compass, and Candling) are intended to provide a person with the tools needed to survive if they get […]

Click for more information on 'Dave Canterbury’s 10 C’s of Survival Adapted for SAR Personnel'
15:00  -  16:45
Dining Room South

What to Do if You Are First On Scene

This session presents actions an initial responder can take to get the mission off to a good start for when the Search Mission Coordinator arrives.

Click for more information on 'What to Do if You Are First On Scene'
15:00  -  16:45
Equine Camp

SAR K9 Meets SAR Equine

This course is designed for SAR K9s that have never been exposed to SAR Equines or as refresher for past attendees.  The goal of this course is for K9s to work on task with their handlers, without the K9 being distracted by horses within their work zone or track.

Click for more information on 'SAR K9 Meets SAR Equine'
18:00  -  19:00
Dining Room

April 23, 2017

08:00  -  09:45
Dining Room North

Critical Incident Stress Management

This program is designed to help SAR personnel understand Stress in general, and how to manage it prior to a Critical Incident, and what to do afterwards.  Discussion will also cover how to read it in another searcher and find help before a valuable resource is lost.

Click for more information on 'Critical Incident Stress Management'
08:00  -  09:45
Dining Room South

Supplementing Your USGS Topographic Maps

According to the USGS, the average topographic map was last revised in 1979.  These maps still are the best and most consistent source of 24,000 scale quad maps, but a lot has changed in the last 40 years. This course will cover alternative mapping sources, including websites and apps, to help you identify new developments, […]

Click for more information on 'Supplementing Your USGS Topographic Maps'
08:00  -  11:45
Outside

Tracking Evaluations

VDEM Tracking Evaluators will be conducting several evaluation stations at the annual conference including Tools, Aging, Sign Interpretation, Signcutting, Sign Squares and others. You are welcome to participate in one or more evaluation stations whether you have an interest in certifying as a tracker, or even if you are just curious about trying some tracking […]

Click for more information on 'Tracking Evaluations'
10:00  -  11:45
Equine Camp

Capabilities and Deployment Tactics of Equine SAR

This course provides incident commanders, search managers and search and rescue (SAR) team leaders with basic awareness and benefits of deploying mounted SAR(MSAR) responders. Attendees will obtain operational and tactical knowledge of MSAR best practices of passive and aggressive search techniques within wilderness, rural, suburban, and urban mission environments. Participants will also come away with […]

Click for more information on 'Capabilities and Deployment Tactics of Equine SAR'
10:00  -  11:45
Dining Room North

Community Involvement

Many jurisdictions find themselves overwhelmed with untrained and unaffiliated volunteers when it comes to high profile missing persons cases. It is human nature to want to help, but it can place a substantial burden on the already stressed search and rescue and law enforcement professionals. This presentation will discuss strategies for developing relationships with community-based […]

Click for more information on 'Community Involvement'
12:00  -  13:00
Dining Room

A Place to Stay

Meals are buffet-style and included with registration. Lodging is also included with registration. Lodging is open air cabins with mattresses and you need to bring your own linens.