Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Recent Adirondack Rescues: Injured And Lost Hikers

DEC LogoNew York State Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Rangers respond to search and rescue incidents in the Adirondacks. Working with other state agencies, local emergency response organizations and volunteer search and rescue groups, Forest Rangers locate and extract lost, injured or distressed people from the Adirondack backcountry.

What follows is a report, prepared by DEC, of a recent mission carried out by Forest Rangers in the Adirondacks.

Town of North Elba
High Peaks Wilderness

Injured hiker: On March 12, 2016 at 3:10 p.m., DEC Ray Brook Dispatch received a call from a hiker on Phelps Mountain reporting an injured 29-year-old male. The hiker was wearing micro spikes, but extreme icy trail conditions lead to a fall. DEC Forest Rangers responded to the scene and were able to splint the injury and assist the hiker out to Marcy Dam. He was taken out by vehicle from Marcy Dam to the South Meadows parking area where he declined further medical assistance. The incident concluded at 7:30 p.m.

Town of Willsboro
Private Land

Lost hikers: On March 13, 2016 at 3:05 p.m., Essex County 911 transferred a call to DEC Ray Brook Dispatch from two lost hikers on Rattlesnake Mountain on private property in Willsboro. The 23-year-old male and 22-year-old female, both from Plattsburgh, NY, reported they had lost the trail after leaving the summit. DEC Forest Rangers responded and located the hikers at the GPS coordinates provided by Essex County 911, which were obtained from their cell phones. They were approximately 100 yards from the trail. The hikers did not have a map, compass or appropriate gear. They were escorted back to their vehicles in good health. The incident concluded at 6:05 p.m.

Be Prepared: Properly prepare and plan before entering the backcountry. Visit DEC’s Hiking Safety webpage and Adirondack Trail Information webpage for more information about where you intend to travel. The Adirondack Almanack reports weekly Outdoor Conditions each Thursday afternoon.

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Community news stories come from press releases and other notices from organizations, businesses, state agencies and other groups. Submit your contributions to Almanack Editor Melissa Hart at editor@adirondackalmanack.com.

5 Responses

  1. Freethedacks says:

    Since our nanny state is always looking to keep us safe from ourselves, it is high time that the NY legislature, the APA, DEC and any other very important alphabet agency that loves to regulate potential public risks, place an outright ban on travel within and upon any state lands within the Adirondack Park, and more specifically, withn the so-called Wilderness designated areas. Clearly these are dangerous places as this report demonstrates, and the cost to taxpayers to rescue hikers from themselves is getting out of hand. By banning people from hiking and God forbid, biking, within the so-called Wilderness areas, nature can finally be free of the molestation by us humans. And with this banishment, think of the money to be saved by not having to dedicate time and man-hours to scour the woods to find lost hikers, and since we no longer have to spend countless hours in meetings with the APA and DEC to determine what type of travel is allowed within the state lands, the additional savings in taxpayers dollars will be huge. In fact, by banning humans from the Adirondack Wilderness, we could just as well eliminate the APA, and the Adirondack Council could be freed from its constant fear mongering to do more important work, such as raise money to help impoverished Adirondackers that are having a tough time just surviving. The one exception to the ban would be for a special permit for Carl Heilmann, so he can continue to provide great photos for wall calendars. We can look at his photos an take solace in knowing that this one part of the planet is finally free from us!

    • Boreas says:


      I suspect eliminating all backcountry use in Wilderness areas would tend to impoverish ADK residents a tad more…

      • Freethedacks says:

        Hi Boreas explain how. Outside of coffee and gas purchases at Stewarts in Keene, backcountry users contribute little to the local economy. I personally have been on Adk Mtn Club hikes where we simply drove in from the Capital District, bagged our peaks, and drove straight back home. Not a dime spent within the blue line. We even made sure we were all gassed up by Glens Falls so as to avoid the price hikes at the Adirondack hamlet gas stations. So whilst my comment has an overtone of sarcasm, it is not far from the truth – groups like the Adirondack Council and the APA are anti-business and anti-human and would rather us not be there at all

        • Boreas says:

          While your group may have been against spending any money within the blue line, many other hikers vacation and recreate there and spend plenty. I am one of those people and have done so for 40 years. Some trips I did on the cheap, but it seems like I dropped $200 every time I got near the Mountaineer and another $20 at The Noonmark. And if we weren’t sleeping in the woods, we stayed at local B&Bs and lodges. I spent even more when backcountry skiing and snowshoeing. And I am certainly not alone.

          Perhaps the Park residents would be a little less impoverished if your group had not gone to such lengths to avoid spending money there. Luckily, not everyone feels the same as you.

        • muddlermike says:

          Not sure how you go from just a couple of DEC accident reports to your psycho-babble, but man, you need to relax. You’ve obviously never seen the pictures of the early 1900 and the raping of the mountains from logging and mining. If there wasn’t any form of regulation, the ‘dacks would be totaled – not the gentile wilderness we have today. At the very least, having the DEC help out injured and ill prepared hikers helps prevent all those dead bodies that would eventually pile up along the trail (tongue planted firmly in cheek). I also agree with Boreas in that I’ve been hiking and fishing in the Adirondacks since I was 4 years old and always spend hundreds of dollars on gas, restaurants, lodging, shopping, and attractions within the blue line every year.
          Switch to decaf, take a Xanax, light a dubie, or just get out in the woods a little and chill…

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