Missing Elderly Hiker Triggers Manhunt in Hudson Valley
An older hiker went missing in the Hudson Valley this weekend, triggering a late-night manhunt.
The unnamed senior citizen set out for a hike on Wittenberg Mountain in the Slide Mountain Wilderness Area of Ulster County on Sunday before his family reported him missing later that evening.
The 69-year-old hiker was last seen at the intersection of the Wittenberg and Terrace Mountain trails by his family before he went missing. DEC rangers were dispatched to the area and assisted by a huge presence of other departments, including the New York State Police, Shandaken Police, Ulster Emergency Management, New York City Department of Environmental Protection, Phoenicia FD, and Shandaken Ambulance.
After combing the area, the hiker was eventually found uninjured, but fatigued. The senior citizen was discovered approximately one mile from the trailhead where he said he had stopped to rest after getting lost.
The hiker said he mistakenly took the trail to Terrace Mountain and, after he realized he was going the wrong way, went back to the red trail to rest. The man was finally helped out of the woods by a ranger after 1:30am.
The DEC stressed the importance of planning ahead before setting out to hike, especially when you're going alone. The "Hike Smart NY" plan calls for a responsibility code that includes being prepared with the proper attire, essential equipment, using maps and guides to find your way, leaving trip plans with friends and family members, being "realistic" about your fitness and skill level, checking weather forecasts and other important preparations. You can learn more about hiking smart on the DEC's website.