Sierra Madre Search & Rescue

The Sierra Madre Search and Rescue Team is a group of dedicated volunteers committed to saving lives in the wilderness. The team has responded to thousands of calls in the wilderness and saved countless lives.

The Team

The Sierra Madre Search and Rescue Team is a non-profit, all volunteer organization founded in 1951 to save lives through mountain rescue and outdoor safety education. The team motto of “anywhere in the wilderness that someone needs help…” has guided us through over 5,000 requests for help since our founding.

Our primary area of operation is southern California, but the team has responded to calls for  help in areas extending from Baja, California, through the Sierra, and up to northern California, and as far east as Nevada and Utah.

The Sierra Madre Search and Rescue Team is affiliated with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department as high-risk, civilian volunteers and accredited through the Mountain Rescue Association (MRA).

Our services are provided at no cost and are available through our 24-hour dispatcher at the Sierra Madre Police Department at (626)355-1414 or by calling 911.


Thank you for your interest in joining Sierra Madre Search and Rescue!

If you are a hiker, mountain biker, rock climber, mountaineer, trainer – someone who is comfortable in the outdoors, and you would like to give back to your community by volunteering, perhaps joining SMSR would be a good fit.

While we are an all-volunteer group, the training process is rigorous and requires a significant time and money investment.

Applicants need to be between 25 and 55 years old and we require team members to be able to respond to Sierra Madre within 20 minutes. We also ask all members to give a 5-year commitment to the team. Our members are required to be EMT-B certified once they complete their probationary class with available time to pursue that certification before their training begins.

We are no longer accepting applications for the 2024-2025 Probationary Class. Please check back for details of future class enrollments.

If you have any questions, please send an email to


There is never a charge for our services, nor do we receive any tax dollars or other governmental support. One hundred percent of our funding comes from the generous donations from the community. 

Searching for lost hikers, assisting people injured in the mountains, and educating kids on how to be safe in the mountains are all things we could not do without the support of our community.

If you would like to help us help others, please consider making a donation by clicking here.

Your support buys the ropes, medical supplies, and gas in the trucks that make it possible for SMSR to be anywhere in the wilderness that someone needs help!