Ski Apache Ski Patrol & Safety
Located in Ruidoso, New Mexico, Ski Apache is New Mexico's premier ski and snowboard resort. Fifty-five trails, beginning at 11,400 feet, fan out for skiers and snowboarders of all levels with a fall line of over 1800 feet, making skiing and snowboarding enjoyable for everyone.
Safety is a prime concern of the Ski Apache Ski Area. The Ski Apache National Ski Patrol’s mission is to keep the skiers and snowboarders safe, respond to medical emergencies and provide customer service on the Mountain. Staying safe at Ski Apache is everyone’s responsibility. Whether you’re a seasoned black diamond rider or just beginning in snow sports, safety is an important part of enjoying the Mountain.
Besides our Ski Patrol staff, there are approximately 80 volunteer National Ski Patrol personnel associated with Ski Apache. Most salaried personnel are EMT qualified and the National Ski Patrol personnel are Outdoor Emergency Care qualified. Many of the National Ski Patrol personnel are also nurses, paramedics and doctors in their regular careers. Additionally ski patrol members participate in a safety and first aid refresher training course each year.
Looking For New Members
The Ski Apache Patrol is always looking for new alpine skiers and riders who want to be a part of an organization dedicated to helping fellow skiers and riders while enjoying America's favorite winter sport.
The Patrol provides training in National Ski Patrol (NSP) Outdoor Emergency Care (OEC) first aid - the standard of care for ski patrols in New Mexico - and alpine toboggan handling. Our 80+ volunteer patrollers are men and women aged 18 to 70+, married and single, all with a love of skiing and snowboarding. Many of our volunteers are also EMT/Paramedics, nurses, and doctors in their regular careers.
There is a significant commitment of time and money each year to be an active NSP volunteer patroller at Ski Apache. To stay in good standing to receive benefits of membership with the patrol, volunteer patroller must attain at least 16 days of patrolling at Ski Apache, which amounts to about 4 days a month that can be either full-day or half-day attendance. Benefits include discounts at the Ski Apache sport shop, a discounted lunch from the restaurant, and complementary lift passes for family and/or friends. Membership with NSP includes benefits for discounted ski equipment as well. Members of Ski Apache's Ski Patrol may also volunteer during summer operations and obtain discounts on Windrider Zipline tours and complementary gondola rides.
The Patrol also consists of about 15+ full and part-time paid Professional patrollers that is augmented by the volunteer patrol during high Guest volume periods during the ski season. The Pro Patrol are paid on a three-tiered pay scale based on Emergency Medical Care experience and certification.
So how do you become a Patroller, either Professional or Volunteer, at Ski Apache.
To become a Professional Patroller, you must participate in the Ski Apache Job Fair conducted usually at the end of October each year to apply for a patroller position. Persons must have either a current OEC or EMT certification or similar certification such as RN or MD at time of the job fair. However, there are usually a few open positions for new patrollers.
There are two options to become an NSP Volunteer patroller at Ski Apache. If a person has an EMT, RN, or MD certification, they can become OEC certified by challenging the OEC course/tests. If a person has no EMS certification or experience, they must take the full OEC course that is offered by the Ski Apache Patrol prior to the ski season each year. There are some costs for both options. First, OEC candidates should purchase the OEC Manual 5th edition that can be found on-line from such websites like Amazon.com for about $85.00 in hardcopy. Digital copies are available at cheaper prices. Whether taking the full course or challenging the course/tests, OEC candidates must pass a Final Written and Final Practical Exams which cost $60.00. Once candidates pass these exams, they must register with the NSP for at least a year with the Ski Apache NSP Patrol which costs $65.00. (Note: If a candidate is Active Military, the NSP registration fee is waived.) Minimum total cost to get the OEC certification is a total of $210.
For the 2016-17 season, the Ski Apache Patrol will conduct the full OEC course beginning in May at the Ski Apache ski area. For the months of May thru August, the course will meet for a two-day weekend each month to provide training in the OEC skills required for the OEC Certification. There will be a significant portion of self-paced study for the full course as well. One benefit for an EMT that completes the full course is that a total of 55.0 continuing education hours can be awarded.
The Final Written and Practical exams will be conducted on a week-end in September, either at the beginning of the month and/or at the annual patrol OEC refresher at in early October. Attendance on scheduled dates for the full course training is mandatory. Tentative dates for the Final Exams are September 12-13 and 26-27 week-ends. For persons taking the OEC challenge, registration is open until 1 November with the last offering of the final written and practical exam during the Thanksgiving week-end (November 28-29) at the Ski Apache ski area. Candidates who take the full course can re-test the Final Written exam, while candidates that challenge the course can only take the written exam once.
For more information contact David Budak at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our application is on the Contact Us Tab of this website. Also, feel free to stop by the Ski Apache First Aid Station on weekends during the ski season to discuss becoming a member of the Ski Apache Patrol.