New 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 recent missions carried out by Forest Rangers in the Adirondacks.
Town of North Elba
Wilderness Rescue: On Oct. 8 at 12:18 pm, DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch received a request for assistance from a married couple from Cornwall, Vermont, whose Australian Shepherd had become stranded on a ledge after falling off the side of the trail on Pitch Off Mountain. Forest Rangers Benjamin Baldwin, David Russell, and Scott van Laer responded to assist. The rangers arrived on scene at 1 pm and headed in to locate the hikers. Once the Rangers met up with the couple, they completed a 10-foot raise in a narrow crevice to rescue the uninjured dog. Rangers escorted the dog and hikers back to the trailhead. All units were cleared of the scene by 5:30 pm.
Town of Keene
Wilderness Rescue: On Oct. 9 at 3:30 pm, Essex County 911 transferred a call to DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch from a man reporting that his wife had fallen and injured her upper left leg while hiking Blueberry Mountain. Using coordinates attained through 911, Dispatch placed the couple’s location on the section of the Blueberry trail that goes over private land. Forest Rangers Scott van Laer, Scott Sabo, and Benjamin Baldwin responded to the Marcy Field trailhead where they were met by the Keene Fire Department and the Keene Valley Fire Department Backcountry Rescue Team. Forest Rangers and volunteers located the hiker and evaluated the injury before placing her in a litter to be carried out. Once back at the trailhead, the 58-year-old woman from Keene was transported by Keene EMS to a local hospital for treatment. All units were cleared from the scene at 5:22 pm.
Town of Indian Lake
Wilderness Rescue: On Oct. 10 at 4:39 pm, a call came into DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch from a group of hikers on the OK Slip Falls Trail. The caller reported that a 29-year-old female hiker in his group had an ankle injury and was on Northern Frontier Road. The caller requested assistance since the subject was unable to walk. Forest Ranger Arthur Perryman responded and picked up the hiker from Ontario, Canada, with his patrol vehicle and gave her a ride to the main gate where other members of the hiking party were waiting with their vehicle. The hiker refused medical attention and advised she would seek it on her own.
St. Lawrence County
Town of Clifton
Wilderness Rescue: On Oct. 13 at 12:03 pm, St. Lawrence County 911 contacted DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch regarding a lost hiker near Olmstead Pond in the Five Ponds Wilderness Area. The missing hiker was off the trail without a map. Forest Rangers Nathaniel Shea and William Benzel responded by boat on Cranberry Lake for faster access to cell coordinates provided by 911. The hiker was located and brought out by boat. All units were cleared of the scene at 5:25 pm.
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.