Search and Rescue Course

Get a glimpse inside the world of search and rescue with this one-of-a-kind four day course. You’ll experience a highly practical syllabus which we can bring to you thanks to an exclusive partnership with the Northumberland Mountain Rescue team who work with us to broaden your expedition skillset.

Learn both the technical and medical aspects of search and rescue through simulations and practical exercises before putting all you’ve learnt into one full day’s training with the Northumberland National Park Mountain Rescue Service.

CPD Award: We estimate 20 hours CPD will be awarded for the completed course by The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.

“Brilliant course really well run, lots of very engaging activities and hands on experience that was great fun and really reinforce learning.”
Search & Rescue course attendee

Improved outcomes, innovation and performance are at the heart of SAR team skills – all elements which can be successfully used within a clinic or hospital setting too.

Key facts

Whether you’re interested in the work of Search and Rescue (SAR) teams, looking to broaden your expedition skillset, or simply want to be better equipped for emergencies at the crag or mountainside, this search and rescue course has something for you. What’s more, this course will have content with significant relevance for traditional pre-hospital and in-hospital settings.

Location: Northumberland National Park

You must be one of the following:

  • Medical or Allied Health Professional
  • Medical & Healthcare Students
  • First Responder
  • Aspirant and qualified Mountain Professionals

You need:

  • Basic navigation skills
  • A good level of fitness
  • Basic knowledge of expedition planning

CPD Award: We estimate 20 hours CPD will be awarded for the completed course
Awarding organisation: Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh

What’s included:

  • Tutoring, accommodation and meals
  • Safety equipment

What’s not:

  • Travel costs
  • Travel insurance (for international travellers)
  • Personal equipment
  • Additional drinks and food purchased from the bar

What to expect

The best work comes from team collaboration. This search and rescue course brings together World Extreme Medicine with Mountain Rescue teams working together to offer you the best of their experience.

From rivers to mountain tops, you’ll learn the fundamentals of mountain rescue, with both technical and medical skills covered. The theory will then be built into practical technical rescue sessions and medical simulations.

Improved outcomes, innovation and performance are at the heart of SAR team skills – all elements which can be successfully used within a clinic or hospital setting too.

During the search and rescue course, we’ll have the honour of being joined by SAR professionals Pete Roberts and Carl Hamilton, who have spoken globally about their research in this area and the practical application of the theory.

On the final day, we have the privilege of joining the Northumberland National Park Mountain Rescue Team (NNPMRT) on a full training exercise. You’ll work directly with NNPMRT team members in their training exercise, testing all the skills you have learnt and further developing your abilities in rescue situations.

Course content

  • Overview of Mountain Rescue
  • Medical Care in Remote Settings
  • Communications
  • Navigation
  • Personal Equipment in SAR
  • Swift Water Rescue
  • Managing Casualties in Water
  • Mountain Rescue Equipment
  • Search and Rescue Techniques
  • Technical Ground Casualty Management
  • Crag Rescue
  • Casualty Packaging and Extrication
  • Mountain Rescue Case Studies
  • Primary Survey
  • Managing Trauma in the Mountains
  • Mountain Rescue Scenarios
  • Full Training Exercise with the Mountain Rescue Team

What you need to know

Set between the Cheviot Hills and Wooler market town, the Wooler Youth Hostel is an ideally situated base for this course.

Wooler Youth Hostel can be accessed via the A679 there are strong transport links from:

Newcastle Airport – 46 miles

Edinburgh Airport – 69 miles

Berwick-upon-Tweed train station – 16 miles

Wooler bus station – 0.3 miles

We highly recommend arriving the day before the course.  You can book additional B&B accommodation for Wednesday night at Wooler Hostel by contacting us at [email protected].  The extra charge is just £40 a night.

When making travel plans, we find a super helpful site.  Here you can discover various door to door travel options both internationally and from within the UK.

Finally, Please ensure that you follow the kit list and bring adequate kit. Unpredictable weather is common, poor kit can be dangerous and could preclude you from activities. You will be outside for at least at least 4 hours each day, the list below is an essential minimum requirement for the course:

  • Waterproof shell jacket and trousers (gore-tex or similar)
  • Base layers for lower and upper body
  • Walking/softshell trousers
  • Fleece layers
  • Insulated jacket (synthetic recommended)
  • Sturdy walking boots
  • Beanie hat
  • Spare clothing in case you get wet
  • Warm gloves
  • Leather work gloves (for rope work)
  • Climbing harness
  • Helmet
  • Day pack and waterproof cover
  • Dry bags
  • 1L Water bottle
  • Compass
  • Whistle
  • Headtorch
  • Personal toiletries including a towel

For any kit you do not have and are not able to purchase, contact:

Outdoor Hire

Expedition Kit Hire

As you will be sharing rooms with other people, we recommend ear plugs and eye masks if you are light sleeper!

Feedback from previous courses

What went well on your Search & Rescue course?

“Engaging, plenty of opportunity for practice and questions, approachable instructors.”

“Well structured: starting from basics to ending with all skills put together, great faculty/mountain rescue volunteers.”

“Everything. Honestly a top grade course with outstanding staff. I learnt so much I’m hoping to take skills back with me to the road.”

What was the single most valuable thing you learnt from your Search & Rescue course?

“I learnt a lot about human factors and how being in an austere environment can massively effect how you think.”

“The importance of planning to avoid wasting resources and clear team communication.”

“That I am capable – thank you.”

About us

World Extreme Medicine trains, supports and informs medics looking to expand their skills and tackle new challenges.

A chance conversation about the impossibility of finding good expedition medics resulted in our Founding Director, Mark Hannaford creating the very first, bespoke Expedition Medicine course in the UK – over 20 years ago. Since then, we’ve spent the last two decades providing on-demand education, on-location training, international conferences, and expedition support for people outside normal medical environments.

Our network of around a quarter of a million experts, practitioners and instructors is here for you – inspiring, informing and connecting you with like-minded people and new opportunities.

Whether you’re a doctor, nurse, dentist, vet, paramedic, medical student or allied health professional, you can join us and discover new frontiers of your practice both at home or in the field.

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