How to Join

To join alpineSAR, complete and return an application form – downloaded directly here or use the Contact Us page.

Entry Criteria

Age: Applicants must be over 18 years of age.

Experience: A minimum of 16 full days of bush walking, including one or more continuous periods of at least 4 days, plus 4 weekends or equivalent back-country ski touring experience.

One of the overnight walks must have been in adverse conditions, and another in snow.

Navigation: Applicants must be competent in off-track navigation, be able to give and interpret grid references, be conversant with orienting a map / oneself using a compass and relate map to terrain.

Applicants must be capable of being independent in the bush.

Fitness: Applicants must be capable of prolonged heavy scrub-bashing on steep slopes.

Equipment: Applicants must have a complete range of equipment in good condition, this includes skiers having suitable skis and ice climbers having a full alpine kit.

Food: Members are expected to cook and provide their own nutritional meals using dehydrated rations.

Leave: Applicants need to have suitable arrangements with their employers for 3 days leave during searches.

What happens next?

On receipt of your application, your references will be checked and it will be considered at the next alpineSAR Committee meeting.

If accepted, you will have Trainee membership. Membership Fee and Entry Fee (which covers cost of alpineSAR cap & shirt) are then payable. Membership Fee is currently $60 ($10 discount if paid within 30 days) and Entry Fee $60 (2023-2024).

To progress to Active call out status, Trainees successfully complete Core alpineSAR Competencies (fitness, radio, GPS, knots, navigation and search techniques), complete a first aid certificate and successfully participate in an alpineSAR or BSAR overnight training practice. It is expected that Trainees will become Active within 2 years of joining.

To maintain Active status members must achieve a minimum training attendance of 4 days of alpineSAR or BSAR training over a rolling 2-year period, at least 2 days of which must be alpineSAR training, and maintain currency in the Core Competencies. Members rated as steep snow and ice (SSI) competent must achieve and maintain competency in SSI and Avalanche Search and Rescue competencies.

The alpineSAR membership policy and process is available here.