The Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue says it’s ready to continue operations into the winter months.

President Paul Berry says despite being only a few days into the new year, teams have been busy.

“We were involved in a search for an elderly male in the Parksville area on New Years Day and we’ve just been remotely assisting with the planning and the management with a search in Haida Gwaii which was successful just hours ago,” says Berry.

He added that as the team moved to winter mode, it uses a few unique tools for the season.

“All of our team members are required to have an avalanche beacon, a probe, and shovels so that we can locate them if the were to be buried in an avalanche. It’s a tool that can be used to search for others that may be buried.”

Volunteer members are also required to have avalanche response training before taking part in any operations.

Berry also says if you plan to adventure, especially during the winter months, its important to be prepared with the right tools and equipment.

“People (should) only travel in areas that are in their scope of experience. They should be prepared in terms of the equipment they take for the changing weather conditions. In this climate, (it’s important ) that they’re dressed in waterproof clothing and insulated clothing.

“(They should also have) some type of device to navigate and signal with, a cell phone is really not adequate in some of the backcountry areas, and that they have equipment so they can survive if they are delayed overnight.”