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Badlands SAR is an all-volunteer team comprised of people that are willing and able to help when their fellow citizens need it.

Our recruitment is ongoing, and we are always working to improve and build upon the training and skills that we have established since 2018. Badlands SAR follows the standards and training curriculum established by the National Association for Search and Rescue (NASAR) and is also developing a state standard through our team that is set by the Search and Rescue Volunteer Association of North Dakota (SARVAND). Standards, training, and abilities are vital in any profession and in order to provide a reliable, robust, ready, professional, and capable searcher, it is imperative that there be the necessary educational, physical, and standardized foundations in order to provide for such skillsets that come in demand when a person goes missing or someone becomes distressed. When the lives of team members and the lives of those we seek are at stake, every member must understand that they have to be ready, physically and mentally, to mee that expectation.

Interested citizens that are looking for a challenge and a way to help others should look at applying to our team.


Applicants to the team are required to:

-18 years of age, minimum.

-Possess a valid state driver license.

-Be of good moral character. No felony convictions. Pass a background check.

-Pass a Physical Agility Test requiring completion of a two-mile hike with a 15lb + 24-hour pack in 40 minutes or less.

-Be able to commit to participation of team functions to include monthly meetings and training events, public outreach, fundraising, and missions.

-Successfully complete all required training during probationary member period.

-Be willing to work as a team member, follow team standards, work with others, and abide by and hold to a code of conduct.



A good SAR team member is someone who is comfortable in the outdoors and familiar with being out in the elements. Hot, cold, wet, windy, frozen, and any mix thereof. Those that hunt, fish, hike, mountain bike, boat, kayak, dive, snorkel, and seek adventure are good attributes that fit a SAR volunteer. That comfort, coupled with an understanding of the outdoors, layered with the necessary training, teamwork attitude, physical fitness, and mental fortitude are who we seek. If that is you, we would very much like to talk with you!

Being a SAR team volunteer is very challenging but rewarding. Training and meetings make up for the majority of a member's time and missions require a lot. They can be scheduled (cold cases) or urgent in nature. Volunteers provide their own vehicle, pack, fuel, food, and much of their own equipment. This is above and beyond what even volunteer fire and EMS requires. Missions can be anywhere within the state of North Dakota or Montana. 


We have something for everyone on the team, not just field searcher. If you are retired, physically unable to meet the demands of field team assignments, or something else but are reliable, meet the other prerequisites and want to help, we have support roles too. Those are incident command and support tasks such as communications, family liaison, supply, perimeter/observer, and administrative tasks. We also have the constant need for fundraising help. 

If you believe you can help us in our mandate to help and hold to the standards set, please contact us for a membership application!


Our homebase is Watford City, ND. But we have members living all across western North Dakota. As of February 2023, members reside in Watford City, Bismarck, Dickinson, Killdeer, Minot, and Williston, ND. We are currently needing to boost our numbers in McKenzie County or nearby as we are working on establishing a memorandum of understanding with the sheriff's office and further develop SAR there. It will require a great deal of dependable and reliable people to make it successful. 

Meetings are held in person in the Watford City area and also virtual. Trainings are also conducted in person and also virtual. Training is vital but we aim to have members available over distances, so the option is there for virtual/remote training. However, training as a team is also a crucial part of SAR and that is also factored in, training topic dependent. 


If you are interested, please email us to request a membership application at:



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