Hiker found dead on trail in White Mountain National Forest
A hiker was found dead Sunday morning on the Castle Ravine Trail between Mount Adams and Mount Jefferson in the White Mountain National Forest.
According to New Hampshire Fish and Game officials, two hikers came across the body of at 8:45 a.m. on the Castle Ravine Trail close to the tree line.
The hikers checked for a pulse and found the hiker frozen with no signs of life.
They tried to make a 911 call from that location but were unable to do so. The two then continued to hike down the trail until they met another hiker coming up about a mile from the trail head. They used that hiker's cell phone to make a 911 call at 11:22 a.m. reporting the dead hiker.
Conservation officers, volunteers from Androscoggin Valley Search and Rescue, Mountain Rescue Services, U.S. Forest Service, and Pemi Search and Rescue responded to assist in the recovery.
Conservation officers spoke with the hikers who found the body and a plan was made to have two teams come in from two separate directions to help in the recovery.
One team went up the Lowes Path to the Randolph Path across the ridge to the Castle Ravine Trail. The other team took a snow cat up Mount Washington and crossed the ridge line about five miles to reach the trail. Both groups arrived about 6 p.m.
By then it was dark and the location given was not precise enough for the rescue parties to quickly locate the victim.
Ultimately, the middle aged man, weighing about 200 pounds, was found. He has yet to be positively identified and his family has yet to be notified, Fish and Game officials said.
Conservation officers investigated the scene while consulting with the medical examiner. After finding nothing suspicious, they started moving the body down the mountain because it was impossible to go up the way they had come. Other search and rescue teams hiking up had to be diverted over very rugged terrain to aid with the extraction.
The rescue party made it out about 2:30 a.m. and were met by personnel from the Bryant Funeral Home, who brought the body to their facility where the medical examiner will start the process of determining the cause of death.
Once the man is positively identified and his family notified, officials said additional information will be made available.