DEC aids lost and stranded hunters, hikers

State Department of Environmental Conservation forest rangers assisted hikers and hunters in Hamilton and Saratoga counties, and used a boat to rescue a group of five men in the central Adirondacks this past week.

Town of Morehouse

Rangers located a missing man in the wilderness this past Saturday.

At 7:07 p.m. on Oct. 26, the state Department of Environmental Conservation’s Ray Brook dispatch received a call from Hamilton County 911 about a hunter who was overdue. The 71-year-old Utica man had been hunting behind his camp and was expected to return by dark. Forest rangers Michael Thompson and Jenifer Temple responded to assist the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office in locating him.

At 8:46 p.m., Thompson found the man and assisted him out of the woods, where he declined further assistance.

Town of Long Lake

Rangers used a boat to rescue a group of men stranded on the shoreline of Forked Lake on Sunday.

At 8:28 a.m. on Oct. 27, the DEC’s Ray Brook dispatch received a call from a group of five men who said their boat had capsized the night prior and they’d lost most of their gear. Forest rangers Gary Miller, Jenifer Temple and Robert Zurek responded and used a boat to locate the group. They were transported back to their vehicles by 11:51 a.m.

Town of Greenfield

Rangers were dispatched to the town of Greenfield, Saratoga County, to locate two hikers lost on Spruce Mountain on Sunday.

At 8:41 p.m., the DEC’s Ray Brook dispatch received a call from the Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office about a dropped 911 call from a man who said, “We are on the trail,” but the call was lost before he could elaborate. The 911 coordinates placed the call on the southwest side of Spruce Mountain.

Forest rangers Anthony Goetke and Melissa Milano responded to assist sheriff’s deputies in their search. Six minutes after the first call, the same caller said he had left from Archer Vly with one other person. He said they were both lost, out of light and cold. The coordinates from that call placed them within 600 feet of where they’d been before.

Rangers arrived at the trailhead and located the 27- and 29-year-old hunters from Amsterdam, Montgomery County, at 10:24 p.m. The pair were cold but otherwise unharmed. Rangers escorted the hunters back to the trailhead at 11:34 p.m.