Related to MAKE 17, Makeshift: Mountain Bike Rescue
MakeShift 17: Jayne Johnsen-Seeburger's Honorable Mention Entry
by Lee D. Zlotoff
June 30, 2009
What Goes Down Must Come Up
- Use the saw to cut a branch to become an anchor.
- Drive the branch into the ground. (You can remove the bike seat to use as a hammer. (Remember, it's a long stem with a weight on the end, like a hammer.)
- Secure the rope to the branch by wrapping it around the exposed end of the branch at the rope's midpoint.
- Lower down the inner tube tied on the end of the rope so that your friend can use the inner tube as a sling to support himself and free up his hands.
- Use the other half of the rope to lower down the backpack with the water, the protein bar, and the warm jacket so your friend can head off going into shock.
- With your friend secure, cut additional branches to use to secure your bike in an upright position on the trail with the rear wheel up in the air and free of the ground. You could now use the saw's D-rings to “hang” the bike by its rear axle (D-ring on each side of the axle hanging from a simple cross brace of two branches tied together with a short length of the rope.)
- Remove the tire and inner tube (save them for later) from the rear wheel so that the now-unencumbered rim can be used as a pulley.
- Run the free end of the rope around the “pulley.”
- Attach the free end of the rope to the backpack.
He Ain't Heavy
- Load the backpack with rocks from the trail to act as a counterbalance and to offset the weight of your friend.
- Remove the anchor.
- Toss the rain gear down to your friend to use to reduce the friction between himself and the hill when you “wind” him up the hill.
If there aren't enough big trees to allow you to make a stand to lift the rear end of the bike off the ground, then remove the seat and turn the bike upside down and pin it down with small branches driven into the earth. (Again, you can remove the bike seat to use as a hammer.)
You'll then have to pull the rope, hand over hand. The counterweight of the stones in the backpack should still make this possible.
Position Is Everything in Life
- Pedal the bike, using low gear to your advantage, to pull your friend up the hill. The counterweight should make this easier than trying to use brute force to lift your friend up the hill.
- Once you have your friend back up on the trail, make a skid-type stretcher from branches tied together to make a V.
- Replace the inner tube and tire on the bike using the tools from the bike kit.
- Secure the apex of the V to the stem of the bicycle seat.
- You can now use the extra inner tube to make a sling between the two sides of the V to support your friend.
- The two long ends of the V will drag on the ground. Still, you will be able to pedal back down the trail with your friend in tow.
Once you are back to safety, you can use the matches to light a celebration fire.
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