20 Jul Firefighter training
This summer I have been involved in firefighter training. My supervisor, Lillian, and a few researchers and law enforcement personnel at Mammoth Cave have been wildland firefighters in the past and they have al inspired me with their stories and more. So naturally, I decided to do the training!
Firefighter training consists of three parts: the online portion, the in person training, and the physical test. The online portion takes about a full week of work to complete and covers the basics of wildland fire behavior, firefighter responsibilities and all the tools and techniques used. The in person training is a full day of real training using tools, fire shelters and more. The physical test is called the pack test (some wildland firefighter agencies do not use this test anymore but the NPS still does). The pack test is a test whether you can walk 3 miles in 45 minutes with a 45 pound pack. There is so much to learn! I have not been able to do the in person training at Mammoth Cave but I will be doing it back at home in Colorado before next summer’s season.
I am really excited to get my red card and firefight in the future and I am so happy Mammoth Cave provided me the opportunity to do most of my necessary training.
One fun fact I learned from online training is that a lot of firefighting consists of making a fireline (a cleared area free of any fuels) and backburning to the fire so there is no damage done past the fireline.
Because I have not had the in person training yet, I have no fun pictures to share. The cover image is me working on firefighter training at my desk. I have loved combining my knowledge of natural ecosystems to see how they apply to wildland firefighting!
Have a flaming hot rest of your day, thank you for reading, come back for more!