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Map Problems

In October 1982, the first issue of SAR Dog Alert came out under the auspices of NASAR, the National Association of Search and Rescue. Judy was the editor with Hatch assisting. Both had taken NASAR's course Managing the Search Function – now renamed Managing the Lost Person Incident. Both of us believed the table-top exercises with maps and a scenario were one of the best learning tools for search managers: incident commander, plans chief, logistics chief, operations chief. And we believe, since dog handlers so often are on their own, the insight into search management, is valuable for them as well.

The best way to use these problems is to read the information, consider lost person behavior based on the category of subject, whatever life history is available, weather conditions, experience, etc. Segment the search area. Determine POA, resources needed. Go into as much detail as you can before you consult the solution.

All of these searches are real. None have been fabricated. They were submitted by readers of SAR Dog Alert from all over the country. Judy included the first map problem under the heading FIND 'EM! in the 7th issue of Alert in June, 1983. Now, you go find 'em!

LAKE LAGUNITAS - WMA 91-yr-old, solitary elderly hiker overdue
MAACAMA - WMA 22-yr-old schizophrenic


Lake Lagunitas    
FIND 'EM! San Rafael, CA Quadrangle  

SUBJECT: Ludwig Magener WMA 91
Good physical condition, takes frequent hikes and swims regularly.
Last seen 25 July 82 at 1300 hrs; left his wife at Lake Lagunitas parking lot (PLS on map) to hike for a couple of hours; last observed setting off up a steep firebreak toward Inspiration Point directly north of Gardner Lookout on East Peak (marked X on map). Wearing light cotton pants, polo shirt, cotton fishing hat, glasses; did not take his day pack or lunch.

WEATHER: 85°, 0-3 mph wind, clear.

TERRAIN: Steep coastal mountain range; dense chaparral (manzanita, etc.) with Redwood and Douglas Fir in canyon bottoms (shade and water).

ACTION: When Mrs Magener reported to the State Park Rangers, one ranger hiked to Inspiration Point, west across North Side Trail to Rifle Camp where he was picked up on the Rocky Ridge Road. No sign was seen of Magener. Search teams were called for the morning of the 26th.


Lake Lagunitas Map
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Healdsburg, Jimtown, Mark West Springs, & Mount St. Helena, CA quadrangles)

15-16 March 1982


Extensive history of schizophrenia; mental and physical condition deteriorating (had not eaten or slept in 48 hours); might try to hide; declared he was "Going to find God."

Last seen by other members of Unification Church camp (Camp Maacama red arrow) when he exited a camp bus on Hwy 128 at about 2015 and fell down an embankment to the creek; witnesses said they heard him swimming in the creek in street clothes and Vibram-soled boots.

40°, stormy, ½ inch of rain during the night.

Steep canyon with rocky creekbed; after unusually heavy winter rains, Maacama Creek was a raging stream and could be crossed only by a narrow suspension bridge and the entrance bridge to Camp Maacama, both at Hwy 128 grade.

HASTY SEARCH RESULTS (2200 15 March – 0200 16 March):
Sonoma County deputies located prints ½ mile upstream from the PLS, headed northeast (presumed but not confirmed to be the subject’s).

Hasty search by dog teams along the west edge of the creek turned up the subject’s Bible with $50, and slide marks down the embankment, pinpointing the LKP (Last Known Position)


Maacama map
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