WALPOLE — An Acworth man who got lost during a hike in Walpole Sunday night was found safe after making his way to a camp site and starting a fire while he awaited rescue, according to a news release from N.H. Fish and Game.
Scott Houghton, 56, had been visiting with his father on Ramsey Hill Road when he decided to go for a walk, the release says. He left a note for his family saying he was stepping out at about 6 p.m., but he got lost while hiking, leading his family to call the police just before 10:30 p.m. when he didn’t return.
Walpole and State Police officers, along with police dog Oakley, began tracking Houghton from the Ramsey Hill Road residence. The dog followed a track about 1.7 miles north of the residence, where officers made contact with Houghton around 1:20 a.m. today.
“Houghton had become disoriented on his hike and eventually located a rural camp just before dark,” according to the release. “Houghton entered the camp, and started a fire, while waiting for rescuers. Houghton and the searchers were driven out of the woods on a Walpole Fire Department UTV and arrived back at the residence at [1:45 a.m.].”
Houghton was well-dressed for his walk, but he did not bring a flashlight and was not proficient in using the GPS on his watch, the release said. The note he left for his family, coupled with the fact that his family knew his regular route, made it easier for law enforcement to find him. Fish and Game reminds people dress appropriately, hike with a partner or group and carry necessary equipment.
Fish and Game Conservation officers also responded to the call and were assisted by the Cheshire County Sheriff’s Dispatch Office and the N.H. State Police Dispatch.