Crews from several area towns worked together to rescue a hiker from Bald Mountain Wednesday.
The call went out around 11 a.m., according to Peterborough fire Lt. Brandon Requa, who said his department responded for mutual aid by 11:30. He said the man rescued was in his 60s and hiking with his friends, though Requa declined to identify him, citing patient confidentiality.
A post on the Hancock Fire Department’s Facebook page this morning says the man was just below the 2,000-foot summit when he had a medical issue. More than two dozen rescue workers spent just over two hours carrying him out, the post says.
Requa said crews from Hancock, Antrim and Peterborough climbed the mountain, while Stoddard and Hillsboro departments staged at the bottom. A Peterborough ambulance took the man to a hospital, according to the Hancock Facebook post, which said he’s “okay.”
He explained that personnel used a Stokes basket, also known as a litter. This stretcher with walls protects the patient from outside elements. Because of the snow cover, crews were able to slide the litter down most of the mountain.
“But it obviously took a lot of manning to control the descent and make sure he didn’t slide out of control,” Requa added.
While there’s equipment for wilderness rescues, such as off-road vehicles, he pointed out that recent incidents have occurred in difficult terrain, where manpower is key. Large teams ensure there are people available to switch out when others get exhausted from carrying the patient, he said.
“If somebody wants to go pick up a 100-pound dumbbell and walk around for a couple miles,” Requa said, that’s essentially what these rescues are.