Taking the Desert to the Icecap

At Global Exploration and Recovery we believe in challenging the status quo when it comes to recovery technology or technique.  This includes the most basic of skills that we’ve been using in the field for years, such as the rope techniques needed to descend into and ascend out of crevasses.

We recently learned about a new device that dramatically increases efficiency of raising objects from crevasses or confined spaces.  Curious to learn how it could improve on our traditional rope and pulley systems, we took a close look at it.  The folks at CMC Rescue have created a state of the art, portable artificial high directional (AHD) hoist called the Arizona Vortex.  This device was developed over many years of trial and error in the rugged Red Rock highland of northern Arizona.

GEaR’s Frank Marley along with Brian Horner (Learn To Return) had a chance to evaluate the Arizona Vortex recently and were impressed with its versatility and ease of set up. The device is configurable as a bipod, but it is the tripod configuration that is of interest to GEaR.                      

Whether the GEaR team needs to descend into a crevasse to investigate a historic clue, or ever needs to perform an ice rescue mission the “Vortex” could be a useful tool on the ice. The increase in speed, safety, and user friendliness that this system offers would be a valuable addition to our mission.