Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Lost 80-year-old hunter found following overnight, multi-agency search

forest ranger reportTown of Keene
Essex County
Wilderness Search:
 On Nov. 17 at 7:25 p.m., Ray Brook Dispatch received a call about two overdue hikers hiking Mount Marcy. The pair from Brewster had proper clothing and headlamps and texted friends at 4:42 p.m. to advise they were on their way down the trail. At 9:02 p.m., Ranger Lewis made voice contact with the hikers and located them a short time later near an old ski trail. One of the subjects had severe leg cramps. Ranger Duchene hiked in with extra water for the pair. Rangers helped the hikers back to Adirondak Loj at 10:20 p.m.

Town of Altona
Franklin County
Wilderness Search:
 On Nov. 18 at 10:10 p.m., Ray Brook Dispatch received a call about a lost hunter in the vicinity of Plank Road in Altona. The reporting party had communication with the hunter using a two-way radio but did not have location coordinates. Forest Rangers Odell and Russell responded along with Environmental Conservation Police Officer (ECO) Lieutenant Younglove. The Officers searched the highest probability areas with negative results. The 80-year-old hunter said he was 30 feet from a creek. Rangers continued searching overnight. The following morning, a New York State Police aviation crew and ECO Fadden joined 11 Rangers in the search efforts. At 6:39 a.m., Rangers Corey and Mecus located the subject in good health and walked him back to his hunting camp.


Be sure to properly prepare and plan before entering the backcountry. Visit DEC’s Hike Smart NYAdirondack Backcountry Information, and Catskill Backcountry Information webpages for more information.

If a person needs a Forest Ranger, whether it’s for a search and rescue, to report a wildfire, or to report illegal activity on state lands and easements, they should call 833-NYS-RANGERS. If a person needs urgent assistance, they can call 911. To contact a Forest Ranger for information about a specific location, the DEC website has phone numbers for every Ranger listed.

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Information attributed to NYSDEC is taken from press releases and news announcements from New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation.

11 Responses

  1. Tim says:

    The DEC needs to educate people about dehydration. Drink the water!!! If you’re worried about getting giardia, take some Flagyl when you get home. Rangers have better things to do than fetch water for people in a boreal rain forest.

    • Tony Goodwin says:

      Good advice, but near impossible to convey to all hikers. Some hikers seem to believe that Giardia will take hold immediately, but, of course, that isn’t the case.

  2. JohnL says:

    An 80 year old hunting alone far enough away from ‘camp’ to get lost?? Really?? What could go wrong with that? With a clue from the subject that he was ’30 feet from a creek’, what took them so long to find him? THIS is the title for the ‘Rangers have a better thing to do’ story.

  3. Teddy says:

    “Found Following”? What does that mean?

  4. Michelle says:

    Kudos to the Rangers. Headline brought me back 1/2 century receiving a call from my dad hunting the Adirondacks with my 2 brothers. Younger brother stopped to tie his boot in whiteout conditions. It was a very scary night in erie County for my mom & me. Forever grateful to all the 1st responders how searched thru the night to bring my brother home safe. Glad they brought this gentleman home to his family as well.

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