Some New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Forest Rangers had a pretty busy end to their week. In three different locations throughout Ulster County, calls were made for help in finding individuals who were lost.

It began on Thursday, November 30, when, around 1 p.m., a woman received a text message from her 60-year-old husband stating that he couldn't get his portable stove to work, and would be returning home from a camping trip on Slide Mountain. When he hadn't arrived home that evening, his wife contacted DEC Central Dispatch. After dispatching the officers to several trailheads, the man was found the next morning around 10 a.m., walking back to his vehicle. He was in good condition and did not require medical attention.

Friday, December 1 found the officers responding to a call in regards to a 66-year-old man who had been hiking Mt. Tremper, but started to panic as it grew darker. The man called his brother, who in turn called DEC Central Dispatch. They got on the phone with the lost hiker, who said he felt as though he would get lost and hurt if he tried going down the mountain on his own. Sensing the hiker's high anxiety, additional Rangers were called in to aid the search and around 7 pm, he was located and assisted down the mountain where he refused further medical care.

The third rescue also occurred on Friday, December 1, when a 76-year-old woman went for a hike through Bluestone Wild Forest where she became disoriented on an unmarked trail as darkness set in. She said she could handle the cold temperatures, but didn't have a flashlight. She called Ulster County 911 at 5:30 p.m., Forest rangers were notified and around 7 p.m., Ranger Kevin Slade and deputies hiked to the suspected location, but to no avail. After several attempts at her coordinates, Range Slade finally made voice contact with her at 7:45 p.m. She required no medical attention and was able to walk herself out.

Thankfully, all of these stories had happy endings, but be sure you let friends or family know where you will be hiking, have a charged cell phone with you, and dress for the weather.

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