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 Keene
Wilderness Rescue: On February 6 at 3:29 pm, a call came into DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch from inReach GPS services reporting a distress signal from a group of hikers on the Phelps Trail in the High Peaks Wilderness, including a 61-year-old male hiker from Brooklyn who was vomiting from severe dehydration. The hikers managed to make it slowly down to the Slant Rock lean-to where they warmed up, started a fire, and changed into dry clothes. The hiking party was requesting assistance in getting back to their camp at Peggy-O Cabin. Forest Rangers Kevin Burns, Peter Evans, James Giglinto, Jamison Martin, Robbi Mecus, Art Perryman, Rob Praczkajlo, Scott Sabo, and Mark St. Claire responded with snowmobiles and a UTV for quicker access into Johns Brook Lodge, which brought them closer to the ill hiker. At 6:45 pm, Forest Rangers assisted the hiker to a waiting ambulance. At 10:18 pm, the hiker was transported by Keene Valley Ambulance to a local hospital for treatment of hypothermia and dehydration.
Town of Long Lake
Wilderness Rescue: On February 5 at 4:59 pm, DEC’s Ray Brook Dispatch received a call from Hamilton County 911 reporting that Long Lake EMS was responding to a snowmobile accident on state land. The snowmobiler struck a tree behind a home just outside of Long Lake. Forest Ranger Jason Scott responded and found that the 48-year-old man from Ballston Spa was out of the woods and being treated by Long Lake EMS. Forest Ranger Scott remained at the location to assist State Police with the accident report.
Town of Webb
Wilderness Rescue: On February 3 at 2:30 pm, Forest Ranger Matthew Savarie overheard radio communications from Herkimer County 911 about a snowmobile crash with injuries. A short time later, Chief Ron Johnston of the Town of Webb Police Department requested Forest Ranger assistance. Forest Rangers Savarie and Brandon Poulton responded to the accident location where a 50-year-old man from Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania, had lost control of his snowmobile and was ejected into a tree. The first-time snowmobiler suffered multiple injuries and was kept comfortable by Rangers Savarie and Poulton until Big Moose EMS arrived. The subject was transported by Mercy Flight to a hospital in Syracuse for further treatment. Forest Rangers waited at the location until the snowmobile towing service arrived and were cleared of the scene at approximately 6 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.