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Rangers search for two missing hikers.

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  • Rangers search for two missing hikers.

    Saw this on Reddit:

    Also here:

    ​More details here:
    Last edited by Trail Boss; 12-13-2016, 11:28 AM.
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  • #2
    It's been odd to watch this break on social media pretty much exclusively. I've seen almost no official journalism. Thanks for the links sir. I was mainly watching Brendan Wiltse trying to put out fires in various facebook groups. Someone wrote a post asking civilians to come to the Loj and join in the SAR operation. Brendan was trying to tell folks to stay home and leave it to the professionals. Two days with cold cold nights. I very much hope they had survival gear but am concerned based on the picture going around that they probably didn't.
    Crepuscular Rays: Dissolve into evergreens

    There's always gonna be another mountain
    I'm always gonna wanna make it move
    Always gonna be an uphill battle
    Sometimes I'm gonna have to lose
    Ain't about how fast I get there
    Ain't about what's waitin' on the other side...
    It's the climb
    -Miley Cyrus


    • gebby
      gebby commented
      Editing a comment
      Along with Brendan I tried to dampen the enthusiasm to get people out there to "help" with a search by calling Ray Brook and posting that they did not want random hikers to show up expecting to help!

  • #3
    I had the impression it was the parents who made the request for volunteers (Update: ADK Almanack indicates it was the young woman's sister). I can empathize with them for doing so but the DEC wasn't asking for volunteers. Having unrequested manpower show up on the DEC's doorstep only serves to create another management task. I also believe they're more likely to request assistance from SAR organizations (especially at this time of the year) before they tap the public for volunteers.

    ​My concern is the "48 hour" window. During the Gerry Largay search, the head of the Maine Wardens indicated most lost hikers (90%) are found within 48 hours. In other words, if you're not found within 48 hours, they're having a hard time locating you; the odds of finding you continue to drop with each passing day.

    ​The news reports don't mention their precise itinerary other than "Algonquin". OK, let's consider Algonquin. If you're anywhere along the trail from the Loj, over Algonquin, down to Lake Colden, the odds are very good you'll be found within 48 hours. Even checking out the spur trails to Wright and Iroquois can be done within 48 hours. The fact they have not been found yet is worrisome. Once you step off-trail, there's lot of terrain to cover on the MacIntyre Range.

    ​Let's hope they are found alive and their youth allows them to survive the harsh conditions unscathed.

    ​See ADDENDUM in first post. Trail from Loj to Lake Colden, over Algonquin, was searched within 12 hours of receiving the emergency call (5:42 PM) and ended at 3:45 AM. Monday's weather prevented the addition of an aerial search. However, today's weather is better and helicopters will join the effort.
    Last edited by Trail Boss; 12-13-2016, 11:38 AM.
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    • #4
      Trained volunteer members of the NYS Federation of SAR Teams (NYSFEDSAR) have been notified and specifically asked to not respond unless they receive specific directions to do so. The DEC is asking the same of general public volunteers.
      "Leave the beaten track behind occasionally and dive into the woods. Every time you do you will be certain to find something you have never seen before." - Alexander Graham Bell


      • #5
        poor bastards


        • #6
          Yeah, I saw this growing viral last night, going from a post on the Aspiring 46ers page then getting blasted out to many more. There's still very little, verified info at this time, still pouring out on social media, so personally I am refraining from speculating about anything at this time (i.e. preparedness, how they got lost, etc etc etc). When I saw the callout for "experienced hikers" to come help in the SAR, I said "Oh, sh*t! This is not going to help!"
          We are closer now than we were five minutes ago


          • #7
            The grapevine says they've been found, are hypothermic, and require evacuation. Awaiting confirmation of this news from the DEC.
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            • #8
              Originally posted by Trail Boss View Post
              The grapevine says they've been found, are hypothermic, and require evacuation. Awaiting confirmation of this news from the DEC.

              Yeah, I saw that, and that post is also starting to go viral. The problem with this quick info is that if its incorrect, and there is a more serious medical matter (say), then that leads to other problems. Its one reason why SAR team members are told not to discuss anything with the media or anyone else in public.
              We are closer now than we were five minutes ago


              • Trail Boss
                Trail Boss commented
                Editing a comment
                True that but it was reported by the young woman's sister so odds are she accurately reported the victims were found alive.

                You know all this John but for the benefit of others:
                What the sister might not have grasped is that hypothermia has stages and if the victims are in late stages, they're not free and safe yet. Frostbite can also accompany hypothermia so they may bear lifelong scars. Nevertheless, let's hope for the best possible outcome.

            • #9
              Congratulations to the DEC's rangers for their hard work. It's reassuring to know they're ready, willing, and available at a moment's notice.
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              • #10
                Online news sources are still reporting inconsistently on these two. One source from over an hour ago says they've been rescued and DEC hasn't stated their condition, and another from 30 minutes ago says the search is still under way. Hopefully its only the victims' families and/or DEC releasing info and not people in the area playing rogue journalist.

                Edit: Naturally Reddit is lighting up with its usually shoddy guesswork from people who could be eye witnesses or possibly fourteen year-olds in Nebraska who have never been to the Adirondacks. Hard to say.

                Kudos to the DEC/Rangers for their efforts. Not all heroes wear capes.
                My mind was wandering like the wild geese in the west.


                • #12
                  “They’re alive, very seriously hypothermic,” Doris Alois said. “The ranger who found them is with them. They were able to have a verbal exchange. I don’t know if it made any sense or what they said. They’re probably debilitated.”
                  As one might expect, after spending two nights near the summit (where they were found), they may have moderate to severe hypothermia. Definitely not safe and sound yet.

                  “They were experienced,” she said. “They usually go together. He’s never done Algonquin though. They weren’t planning to spend the night out, but I know he’'s pretty well stocked with his winter gear and stuff like that. I don’t know exactly what he brought with him, but he’s pretty well stocked.”
                  ​Sadly, this sounds all too familiar; everything after the word "experienced" suggests not much was known about their abilities.
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                  • #13
                    Keep an eye out for updates. This press release indicated there would be a DEC press conference at 2:30 p.m. today. Maybe we'll get some more details soon.



                    • #14
                      Latest press release below. Not too many more details other than, "Helicopter located Blake Alois, 20, and Madison Popolizio, 19, both of Niskayuna, NY, southeast and 265 feet below the summit of Algonquin Peak, this morning at approximately 11:00 a.m."



                      • Commissionpoint
                        Commissionpoint commented
                        Editing a comment
                        That would be close to getting into the scrub above the bear paw.

                    • #15
                      This blew UP on Facebook last night and the first post was on Hiking the Adirondacks, but was quickly shared to multiple other groups including the Aspiring page. Misinformation was shared by a well-meaning friend or family member, encouraging people to gather to help at 7 AM on Tuesday. Quite honestly, I worried it was some crackpot as she cited that the FBI was involved. Not thinking that the FBI would have anything to do with this and there might not be any such emergency, I called Ray Brook to inquire and let them know what was burning up Facebook. They called me twice and I relayed the info that they did NOT want any helpers. I really think the DEC, the ADK club and SARNAK should be involved with these sites to intervene and shut down talk like this the moment it gets started.