February 1, 2017

Desert Mountain Medicine Annual Winter Rendezvous Recap


This January, Desert Mountain Medicine staff got together in Leadville, Colorado to hold the DMM Rendezvous. This is a time for the staff members who are dispersed all over the country to come together as an organization, get to know each other, get updated on new medical information,and have fun!


I appreciate working for a company who wants to invest in their staff and take the time to create consistency across the board. I and 2 other instructors from the state of Utah, commuted to Colorado for the long weekend. We arrived and got right down to business, spending the evening ‘meeting and greeting’ other DMM staff from Instructors, Logistics staff, Lawyers, and aspiring instructors.


The weekend was full of information.

Some of the things we learned:

  • Tips on Teaching: Honing your Pedagogy
  • Avalanche Burial Updates
  • Frostbite and Burn Clarification
  • Notes on Blood Hemorrhage Control
  • Shock: When to NOT raise the legs
  • Diabetes Lecture Info
  • Traction in Place
  • This list can go on….


At this point, I bet you want all of my notes from the Rendezvous, don’t you? I won’t give them all up here….. But I will give you one update for now. (Lucky You!)


Update/Reminder: Traction In Place (TIP)

Why do you pull traction?

  • You pull traction when Circulation/Sensation/Motion (CSM) is poor or absent.

 When do you stop pulling traction?

  • When CSM returns.

 Efficiency Tips:

Have someone else in your party take the patient’s pulse while you are pulling traction.  When the pulse is found, splint the extremity in that position.

If the patient’s nerves are pinched for a long period of time, they may never work again.



Sarah was an avid outdoors woman (26 y/o) who dislocated her shoulder on a mountaineering trip while practicing self arrests with ice ax on varying degree snow slopes. Her friends didn’t know how to reduce her shoulder dislocation. They all decided to evac her out of the field. The evacuation took 14 hours! She lost all CSM in that arm and can no longer use it. No more climbing, no more yoga, no more swimming. Why did this happen?



Ashley Saupe
[email protected]

Until next time.

Play Hard, and Be Safe.