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For Release: Monday, August 31, 2015

Adirondack Forest Ranger Search and Rescue Highlights: 8/24-8/30/15

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Rangers respond to search and rescue incidents statewide. 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 backcountry.

"DEC Forest Rangers' knowledge of first aid, land navigation and technical rescue techniques are often critical to the success of their missions," said DEC Acting Commissioner Marc Gerstman. "Search and rescue missions often require Rangers to function in remote wilderness areas from rugged mountainous peaks to white-water rivers, and through vast forest areas from spruce-fir thicket to open hardwoods."

Recent missions carried out by DEC Forest Rangers in the Adirondacks include:

Warren County

Town of Chester
Private Land
Lost youth
: On August 24, 2015 at 7:30 p.m., DEC Ray Brook Dispatch received a transferred call from Warren County 911 from a 15-year-old lost male from Gormley, Ontario, Canada. The boy, vacationing with family nearby, had gone for a run and gotten lost on logging trails on private property. A DEC Forest Ranger used GPS coordinates from the teen's cell phone to locate the boy in good health at 8:45 p.m. The Ranger returned him to his family at 9:30 p.m.

Washington County

Town of Fort Ann
Lake George Wild Forest
Lost hiker:
On August 25, 2015 at 11:36 a.m., DEC Ray Brook Dispatch received a transferred call from Warren County 911 from a 51-year-old woman from Buffalo, NY, lost on Buck Mountain. She left from the Pilot Knob side of Buck Mountain at 10:30 a.m., and became lost at 11:20 a.m. The woman then directly called Ray Brook Dispatch with coordinates and elevation bearings from her cell phone, which placed her near the Butternut Creek on Buck Mountain. Dispatch told her to wait there, while two DEC Forest Rangers responded to the area. One Forest Ranger entered Buck Mountain through the Pilot Knob side while the other Forest Ranger entered through the Inman Pond Trail. They located her near Butternut Creek at 1:50 p.m. and escorted her back to her vehicle. The incident concluded at 3:01 p.m.

Town of Fort Ann
Lake George Wild Forest
Lost hikers:
On August 30, 2015 at 7:13 p.m., Washington County 911 transferred a call to DEC Ray Brook Dispatch from a male hiker, lost with his 18-year-old daughter on the Shelving Rock Trail System. A DEC Forest Ranger made direct contact with the father and located the pair at 10:38 p.m. The Ranger escorted them out of the woods and back to their vehicle at 11:06 p.m.

Essex County

Town of North Elba
High Peaks Wilderness
Distressed hiker
: On August 27, 2015 at 4:50 p.m., Essex County 911 transferred a call to DEC Ray Brook Dispatch from a 39-year-old woman in medical distress on top of Algonquin Mountain. A DEC Forest Ranger spoke to the woman and determined an aviation rescue was necessary. New York State Police Aviation inserted a Forest Ranger to access and prepare the woman for hoist. At 6:39 p.m., they hoisted her off the summit and transported her to Adirondack Health Center in Saranac Lake for further medical treatment.

Town of Keene
High Peaks Wilderness
Distressed hiker
: On August 27, 2015 at 5:00 p.m., DEC Ray Brook received a radio call from Johns Brook Loj reporting a 77-year-old woman from New York, NY in medical distress approximately .5 miles from Johns Brook Loj. Hikers who encountered the woman along the trail reported her status to Loj staff members. Loj staff members assessed the woman and assisted her back to the Loj. New York State Police Aviation transported two DEC Forest Rangers into Johns Brook Valley. The woman was airlifted to Marcy Field where she was transferred to Keene Valley EMS and taken to Elizabethtown Hospital for further medical treatment.

Be sure to properly prepare and plan before entering the backcountry. Visit DEC's Hiking Safety and Adirondack Trail Information webpage for more information.

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    P.O. Box 296
    Ray Brook, NY 12977
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