KVRS wishes you a safe trip into the wilderness or on the water. One of the most effective ways to ensure you can be found in the case of an emergency, is to have a trip plan prepared before you depart.
What is a trip plan?
A trip plan is a document that provides details on your plans, which you leave with a trusted person who will be available for the duration of your planned trip and will be capable of reporting you missing in the event you do not return as scheduled. If you do not return and we are notified to begin a search & rescue, this form will provide our Rescue Coordinator with valuable information needed to begin a search with out delay – this may save your life!
What should a trip plan include?
- Contact Details of yourself and those in your group: name, address, phone number
- Departure time/date & expected Return time/date.
- Nature or focus of trip (hiking, climbing, etc.)
- Itinerary: Trail name, and if possible map with trail shown, additional details such as, “Leave Carlanna Lake Trailhead, hike to Avalanche Chute waterfall area, have lunch and take pictures, come back to Carlanna Lake Trailhead.” Include key trip elements.
- Vehicle description or descriptions (for example, what was left parked at a given trailhead at the start of the trip, etc.). Include make, model, color, and license plate.
- Names, addresses, and phone numbers of others in the group.
- Any medical issues (such as, “James walks slow due to recent knee surgery”, etc.).
- What communication/locating equipment you will have on you (ie Spot beacon)
- Anything else that a searcher or rescuer needs to know that’s unique to your group.
- For overnight trips include: Type and color of your tent(s) and other large camp gear items; aids aerial searchers when looking for your camp.
- Additional information you could include: description of clothing you are wearing, a photo of the bottom of your shoe, details on pets with you, food and water amounts with you, GPS coordinates.
What if our plans change once we are on the trail?
If you know there is a potential for your plans to change based on conditions or weather, you should include your alternate trip details in the same plan AND call to inform your home contact once that decision has been made on the trail.
If plans changed due to unforeseen circumstances, and you still have cell reception, get in touch with your Trip Plan contact. If you don’t have cell coverage, consider abandoning your planned trip. At a bare minimum, leave a note in a ziploc bag in a clear place from the place you depart the trail with your new plan.
When should I have a trip plan?
We encourage all people heading outdoors, no matter how short the trip, to use our sample Trip Plan below. For your convenience you can download it, print it off (or fill in word), and give it to your contact.
For those trips that may only be an hour or so, you should at minimum let someone know where you are going and when you plan to return, although a full trip plan is still best.