New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Rangers respond to search and rescue incidents throughout New York State. 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.
What follows is a report, prepared by DEC, of recent missions carried out by Forest Rangers.
Town of North Hudson
Wilderness Rescue: On May 6 at 5:56 p.m., Forest Rangers Foutch and Mecus responded to a beacon activation at the base of Grace Peak. The subject indicated in the text that he suffered a dislocated shoulder and was moving slowly down the trail. Rangers and members of Keene Valley Backcountry Rescue hiked in and reached the subject at 8:38 p.m. and put his arm in a sling. When the 43-year-old from Hornell was too weak to continue, rescuers carried him the final mile-and-a-half out to a Keene Valley Ambulance. Resources were clear at 5 a.m.
Town of Keene
Wilderness Rescue: On May 7 at 3:40 p.m., Ray Brook Dispatch requested Forest Ranger assistance for a hiker on Tabletop Trail suffering from severe migraines and nausea. Assistant Forest Ranger Evans hiked in to the subject to assess her condition. The 26-year old from Syracuse was hiking with a partner to the Marcy Dam outpost, but then her conditioned worsened. Rangers Evans and Mecus reached the hikers and transported them via ATV to their vehicle where the subject declined further medical treatment.
Town of Hunter
Wilderness Rescue: On May 8 at approximately 3 p.m., Forest Ranger Dawson was approached by hikers at Kaaterskill Falls who reported an injured hiker near the viewing platform. Ranger Dawson found the 69-year-old from Flushing and provided medical care for her ankle injury. The patient used crutches to move up the trail, but became exhausted and couldn’t continue. Ranger Dawson borrowed a wheelie walker from another group and wheeled the patient 200 feet to his Ranger truck. Ranger Dawson drove the subject to the Laurel House trailhead where she declined any further care.
St. Lawrence County
Town of Potsdam
Wilderness Recovery: On May 5 at 4:19 a.m., Forest Rangers joined Environmental Conservation Police Officers in the search for a 22-year-old college student who reportedly jumped from a bridge into Norwood Lake and was swept away by the currents. Potsdam Fire set up a staging area. The Rangers and ECOs joined New York State Police (NYSP) dive teams, Potsdam Police, St. Lawrence County Sheriff’s, and five fire departments in the search. The search didn’t yield any results until the following afternoon when a member of the NYSP dive team found the subject’s body in approximately nine feet of water a short distance below the dam. Resources were clear at approximately 4:30 p.m.
Town of Lake George
Wilderness Rescue: On May 2 at 6:50 p.m., Forest Rangers Carabetta and Donegan responded to a call for an injured hiker on the trail to Prospect Mountain. Rangers reached the pair of hikers by 7:30 p.m. and stabilized the ankle of the injured 23-year-old from Latham. Rangers assisted the hikers back to the trailhead and then to their vehicle. The injured subject chose to seek further medical attention on her own. Resources were clear at 8:10 p.m.
Read past Forest Ranger search and rescue reports here.
Photo of Potsdam drowning victim recovery in May 2023 provided by DEC.