By: Blonde One
I now feel suitably rested and recovered to share my half of our Wednesday night’s adventure! As you know, the Two Blondes were separated at Shipley Bridge to go off with our own minders to await our rescue. This was a worrying enough start to the evening, never mind the knife wielding Adam. After leaping and wading through fairly wide/deep stretches of water (well they seemed to be wide and deep anyway!) we had to settle into our spot early as the team of rescuers were hot on our heels. We had been watching their torches fast approaching: I was absolutely amazed by their speed. The ‘hasty team’ consisted of 3 members who had come with what they called ‘light’ kit, although their bags were as big as my normal day bag and indeed contained amongst other things: a thermorest, a storm shelter, hot drinks, chocolate, spare clothing and first aid. The job of this team is to run – yes run – to the casualty and make them safe/comfortable and await further assistance if necessary from the rest of the group. My brief was to feign a sprained ankle which I could not put weight on, therefore necessitating a stretcher ride off the moors. Apparently I was so worried about my sister (Blonde Two, not my real sister) that I had come out alone to look for her and make sure that our nasty brother Adam had not done her any harm! The sprained ankle was very efficiently dealt with and my warmth became the paramount issue as I genuinely started to get very cold. My rucksack which had been used as a back rest for me very quickly developed a frost coating! Additional layers were put on, hot drinks were drunk and the storm shelter used as a final ‘warm-up’ while we waited for the stretcher group. In the meantime the radio was alive with instructions and information in between intermittent spells of inactivity as the control vehicle made things even more tricky for the team and cut communications. Throughout the whole exercise the ‘hasty team’ were amazing. They kept my spirits up and made sure that I did not develop full blown hypothermia. Whilst we were waiting I began to contemplate the tricky job that the stretcher team had. Not only did they have to negotiate a very wet, narrow and stony path, but they had several water crossings and a hard slog up a steep hill over some very annoying tussocks! How they managed it, I don’t really know, but I began to wonder if they would actually manage to do the reverse journey with a much heavier load – me! Manage, they did, though. With incredibly skill they loaded me up, strapped me in and began the scary journey down the steep hill. I lay there knowing that I should relax as the 6 stretchers bearers were very skilled and experienced but I couldn’t help wonder if they might drop me by accident and I would roll in a very comedy way down the hill into the water! Luckily I got to the bottom safely and although the ride was a bit rocky I did feel in safe hands.
I too am so impressed by the dedication and commitment shown by these superhuman volunteers. Simply having a sprained ankle (which, lets face it, could happen to any of us) required a huge team of amazing people to effect a rescue. This rescue was done free of charge (click here to help http://www.dsrtashburton.org.uk/), with professionalism second to none and with a reassuring amount of jollity! Thank you very much (especially to the ‘hasty team’ and my minder). I hope that I never need you for real, but if I do I’ll know that you’ll do a fabulous job!