Forest Ranger Actions for Late December
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) 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.
In 2018, DEC Forest Rangers conducted 346 search and rescue missions, extinguished 105 wildfires that burned a total of 845 acres, participated in 24 prescribed fires that burned and rejuvenated 610 acres, and worked on cases that resulted in 2,354 tickets or arrests.
"Across New York, DEC Forest Rangers are on the front lines helping people safely enjoy the great outdoors," said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. "Their knowledge of first aid, land navigation, and technical rescue techniques are critical to the success of their missions, which take them from remote wilderness areas with rugged mountainous peaks, to white-water rivers and throughout our vast forested areas statewide."
Town of North Elba
Wilderness Rescue: On Dec. 29 at 1 p.m., Essex County Emergency Services transferred a call to DEC's Ray Brook Dispatch from four hikers on Mount Jo. The caller stated that her father slipped on the ice while descending the mountain and injured his left leg. When asked if the hikers had traction and could continue down, they stated that they did not have traction but felt comfortable enough to continue down the mountain. Forest Rangers James Giglinto and Megan McCone responded and located the hiking group at 2:30 p.m. The Rangers evaluated the injury and helped the group to slowly make progress off the peak. At 6:19 p.m., Forest Rangers Giglinto and McCone and the hiking group were back at the trailhead. The 42-year-old injured hiker from Hartsdale, Westchester County, sought medical attention on his own.
Be sure to properly prepare and plan before entering the backcountry. Visit DEC's Hiking Safety and Adirondack Backcountry Information webpage for more information.