Wednesday, June 23, 2010

DEC Region 5 Forest Ranger Report (May-June 2010)

What follows is the May and June Forest Ranger Activity Report for DEC Region 5, which includes most of the Adirondack region. These reports are issued periodically by the DEC and printed here at the Almanack in their entirety. They are organized by county, and date. You can read previous Forest Ranger Reports here.


Essex County

Town of Jay, Hurricane Mountain Primitive Area

On Saturday, April 24, 2010, at approximately 3:54 pm, State Police Dispatch received a call reporting a hiker on the Lost Pond side of Weston Mountain who was vomiting, had a severe headache and was unable to walk. Joe Demer, 23 of Amsterdam, NY, was hiking with a group of friends and reportedly had had nothing to eat or drink all day. DEC Forest Rangers responded and requested assistance from State Police Aviation and BackCountry Medical. When forest rangers located Mr. Demer and his party they provided him water and energy food. His condition improved and forest rangers cancelled the aviation and backcountry medical assistance. Eventually, Mr. Demer’s condition improved enough for him to walk. Forest rangers escorted him and his party out to the trailhead. Mr. Demer refused further medical treatment and was released to his friends at 8:00 pm. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to carry and consume plenty of food and water while hiking.

Town of North Elba, High Peaks Wilderness

On Sunday, May 23, 2010, at approximately 7:27 pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call from the Adirondack Loj, reporting a 60 year old male from Canada whose eye had been impaled by a tree branch. The man had been hiking on MacNaughton Mountain with two other people when the accident occurred. DEC Forest Rangers responded and met the group on the trail. Forest rangers escorted the injured man and his party to their vehicle. He refused any medical attention and was released to his friends at 11:00 pm. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to always carry a first aid kit.

Town of North Elba, Saranac Lakes Wild Forest

On Monday, May 24, 2010 at approximately 5:29pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call from a lost hiker near Scarface Mountain. Ashley Pinkowski, 24, of Plattsburgh, NY had climbed the mountain and attempted to return using a different trail. She hiked for 20 minutes before realizing she was lost. DEC Forest Rangers responded and, using her cell phone coordinates as provided by DEC Dispatchers, quickly located Ms. Pinkowski. Forest rangers escorted her out of the woods by 7:30 pm. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to carry a map and compass and know how to use them.

Town of Keene, High Peaks Wilderness Area

On Wednesday, May 26, 2010, at approximately 6:30 pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call from the Adirondack Loj requesting assistance for an 18 year old male who was having a seizure. Scott O’Rourae, 18, of West Harrison, NY was part of a group of youths with the “Walk About Program” hiking near the Johns Book Lodge, when the he experienced a seizure. He was reported to be breathing, alert and conscious but unable to walk. At 8:30pm DEC Forest Rangers were flown into the Johns Brook Lodge by NYS State Police Aviation Unit helicopter. Forest rangers retrieved Mr. O’Rourae and he was flown to Marcy Field. At 8:34 pm he was transferred to Keene Valley Volunteer Fire Department ambulance and transported to Elizabethtown Community Hospital. The seizure may have been caused by dehydration. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to carry and consume plenty of water while hiking.

Town of Wilmington, McKenzie Mountain Wilderness

On Wednesday, June 2, 2010, at approximately 9:59 pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call from angler reporting a member of his fishing group was missing. Three men had been fly fishing on the West Branch of the Ausable River, and upon returning to their vehicle were unable to locate Roland Pavlick, 37, hometown unknown. The two friends searched for Mr. Pavlick to no avail before seeking assistance. NYS State Police were notified to have patrols look for Mr. Pavlick along the road. DEC Forest Rangers responded and searched the area until 2:50 am without locating the lost angler. Plans were made to resume search efforts at 6:00 am with additional forest rangers. At 6:38 am Thursday, forest rangers located Mr. Pavlick at the fishing access site. He had spent the night in the woods, and was wet and tired but otherwise in good condition. He stated that he did not hear any of the calls from searchers the previous night. DEC Forest Rangers reminds members all groups to stay in contact with each other at all times.

Town of North Elba, High Peaks Wilderness (previously reported on 6/1)

On Sunday, May 30, 2010, at approximately 2:50 pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call from the husband of Isabella Kicior, 28, of East Rutherford, NJ, reporting that his wife had injured her ankle while hiking on the VanHovenberg Trail between Marcy Dam and Indian Falls. Three DEC Forest Rangers responded to the incident and carried Ms. Kicior down to Marcy Dam. She was transported by a forest ranger vehicle on the Marcy Dam Truck Trail to the South Meadow Road. A Lake Placid Rescue Squad Ambulance transported her from there to the Adirondack Medical Center in Lake Placid. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers that accidents can happen, be prepared and know how to contact emergency responders. The DEC Forest Ranger emergency contact number is 518-891-0235.

Town of Newcomb, High Peaks Wilderness (previously reported on 6/1)

On Sunday, May 30, 2010, at approximately 11 pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call from the wife of Randy Freeman, 57, hometown unknown, reporting that they had been hiking Mt. Marshall and became separated. She was concern because Mr. Freeman had minor health issues. A DEC Forest Ranger was dispatch and encountered Mr. Freeman just before midnight near the Upper Works Trailhead in satisfactory condition. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to stay together while hiking trails.

Town of North Elba, High Peaks Wilderness Area

On Monday, June 7, 2010, at approximately 4:25 pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call reporting that a member of a hiking party in the High Peaks was very pale and dizzy. Drew Carlton, 20, reportedly had been drinking water but had not eaten all day. DEC Forest Rangers and the Marcy Dam Interior Caretaker responded and met up with the hiking party. Mr. Carlton was provided food and water, and then escorted back to the Adirondack Loj. At 8:23pm, he was evaluated by Emergency Medical Technician and released at his own request. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to carry and consume plenty of food and water while hiking.

Town of Ticonderoga, Pharaoh Lakes Wilderness Area

On Monday, June 21, 2010, at approximately 6:25 pm, staff at the DEC Putnam Pond Campground requested assistance in locating a camper who had gone missing while hiking with other campers. A 17 year old female, hometown unknown, was part of a group hiking to Grizzle Ocean in the Pharaoh Lakes Wilderness Area. The group returned to the campground hoping she was there, but did not locate her. She was reported her missing to campground staff. DEC Forest Rangers responded and began searching the extensive trail system in this wilderness area. At 7:30 pm, the young lady was located, returned to the campground and reunited with the rest of her group. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to stay together while hiking trails. Assign a “sweeper” who brings up the rear of the group and makes sure nobody falls behind. Stop at trail intersections and other locations to be sure everyone is present before continuing on.

Warren County

Town of Thurman, Wilcox Lake Wild Forest

On Sunday, June 13, 2010, at approximately 10:25 pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call reporting a group overdue from a fishing trip to Cod Pond. The caller also stated that he had checked the Cod Pond trailhead and did not see the group’s vehicle. Chad D. Manzer, 36, Wyndham Jackson, 44, and six males ranging in ages from 4 to 16, all of Amsterdam, NY, had planned a day trip to the pond. DEC Forest Rangers responded and began searching the area, including other fishing spots that the group frequented. At 12:40 am, a forest ranger located the group’s vehicle at the Cod Pond trailhead in Warren County. Forest rangers hiked the one mile into Cod Pond but did not locate the party. At 3:44 am, forest rangers returned to the trailhead and started developing plans for the next morning. At 7:00 am eight additional forest rangers joined the search effort and a helicopter was requested from the NYS State Police Aviation Unit. Plans were developed to search the drainages leading out of Cod Pond and Little Joe Pond to the south. At 8:58 am a forest ranger made contact with the group while searching the Georgia Brook drainage and escorted them a mile out to State Route 8. Mr. Manzer stated that the group had hiked into Little Joe Pond by way of the Cod Pond trail and then a short bushwhack. After spending the day fishing, the group became lost while hiking out and spent the night in the vicinity of Georgia Brook. DEC Forest Rangers remind groups entering the back country to leave trip itineraries and contact number for emergency responders with someone at home. The DEC Forest Ranger emergency contact number is 518-891-0235.

Washington County

Village of Hudson Falls

On Sunday, May 9, 2010, at approximately 5:00 pm, the Village of Hudson Falls Police Department request DEC forest rangers assistance in locating a missing woman. Estelle Lindsey, 79, of Hudson Falls, NY, who suffers from dementia, was last seen by her husband at 7:30 am at their home. Forest rangers responded and organized approximately 100 searchers. The searchers began at the Lindsey residence and worked the search outward. Hudson Falls Police Department, Washington County Sheriff Department, Hudson Falls Volunteer Fire Department, Kingsbury Volunteer Fire Department, Fort Edward Emergency Medical Services, Lower Adirondack Search & Rescue and North Country Search & Rescue all participated in the search. Mrs. Lindsey was located at approximately 11:00 pm, nearly 5 miles from her home. She was found lying in a field of tall grass adjacent to a residence by a family that had just returned home after being away all day. She was evaluated transported to Glens Falls Hospital. DEC Forest Rangers reminds people to watch out for elderly relatives, friends and neighbors, especially those suffering from dementia.

Town of Fort Ann and Dresden, Lake George Wild Forest

On Sunday, May 9, 2010, at approximately 4:43pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call from a lost hiker. Laura Brinsko, 42, of Stillwater NY stated that she was on the trail to Black Mountain with a party of 6, four of which were children, and didn’t know how to get back to her car. A DEC Forest Ranger responded and talking to her via cell phone was able to direct her to the nearest trailhead. The forest ranger and State Police met the group and transported them back to their vehicle. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to carry a map and compass and know how to use them.

Town of Fort Ann, Lake George Wild Forest

On Friday, June 18, 2010, at approximately 7:50 pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a call from Washington County 911 stating that a hiker had separated from his group and missing. Christian Romero, 26, of Howard Beach, NY, had become separated from his group while hiking in the Pilot Knob area. He was last seen at the Pilot Knob Ridge trail and was wearing shorts and a sleeveless shirt – not prepared to spend a night in the woods. Mr. Romero was located by his group while they were traveling to the Inman Pond trail head to meet with forest rangers. He had bushwhacked approximately 1.5 miles to the Sly Pond Road. Forest rangers responded to the Inman Pond trail head and interviewed the group before declaring the search resolved. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to stay together while hiking trails. Assign a “sweeper” who brings up the rear of the group and makes sure nobody falls behind. Stop at trail intersections and other locations to be sure everyone is present before continuing on.

Town of Fort Ann, Lake George Wild Forest

On Friday, June 18, 2010, at approximately 9:35pm, DEC Dispatch Center in Ray Brook received a cell phone call from a group of four, stating that they were on Sleeping Beauty Mountain without flashlights. The subjects: John Russo, Michael Regin, Christian Cloutier, and Steven Rimmer, all 18 and of Saratoga Springs, NY, had hiked to the mountain and taken a wrong turn on the way out. They managed to get back to the summit, but darkness overtook them. They were all wearing shorts and were not prepared to spend the night in the woods. DEC Forest Rangers responded, located the subjects and escorted them back to the trailhead by 12:32 am. DEC Forest Rangers remind hikers to be prepared to spend a night in the woods whenever you go into the backcountry. Always carry a flashlight or headlamp, extra batteries and extra warm non-cotton clothing.


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