Steamboat Springs Steamboat Springs Airport will log more than the usual number of takeoffs and landings this weekend as the Civil Air Patrol conducts a statewide training exercise here.
CAP member Joe Stevens said Friday that as many as 15 aircraft from around the state could participate in the training. Part of the weekend will be devoted to a mock search for two "lost" snowmobilers in the backcountry.
Civil Air Patrol is the volunteer civilian auxiliary for the U.S. Air Force. The patrol provides emergency services, aerospace education and cadet programs. Young people from Routt County will be among the cadets assisting in the operation.
Christina Chapman of the Steamboat Springs Composite Squadron said the weekend's exercises will differ from most. In this case, the Civil Air Patrol will work with a command center under the jurisdiction of the Routt County Sheriff's Office and Routt County Search and Rescue. The command center will be at the ambulance barn in downtown Steamboat.
The composite squadron is augmenting the training to test the Civil Air Patrol's ability to work within a larger emergency system, sharpening interagency coordination. Chapman said a communications platform set up in a high-flying aircraft has been added to the exercise to coordinate ground teams.
The volunteers will be up early with briefings scheduled for 6 a.m. Saturday and 7 a.m. Sunday.
Ret. Brig. Gen. Robin Olds, an ace pilot and former Air Force Academy commandant, and will be the featured speaker Saturday evening during the Civil Air Patrol search and rescue exercise. Olds will speak at approximately 6 p.m. at the Steamboat Springs Airport terminal.
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