HAMPDEN, Maine — Four Boy Scouts from Hampden who spent the weekend backpacking in Baxter State Park unexpectedly stumbled upon an opportunity to put their skills to work.
Dylan Cole, Conner Graham and Clayton Forrest, all 15, and Steven Hanson, 17, had finished hiking the Hunt Trail of Mount Katahdin late Saturday afternoon when they got word that a hiker was injured on the trail.
The four boys from Boy Scout Troops 41 and 1776 promptly hiked back up to assist park rangers with the rescue.
“I’m so proud of them,” said Barbara Hamilton, a counselor for Troop 41 who accompanied the boys on the trip. “They really showed a lot of patience and endurance during the process.”
The injured man, Paul Green of Presque Isle, was hiking with a group of co-workers when his foot became wedged between two rocks. As he tried to move forward, everything moved except one of his legs, Hamilton said, and Green ended up tearing a tendon in his ankle.
“It was something that could happen to anyone,” Hamilton said, adding that she had spoken with Green on the phone from a bed at Millinocket Regional Hospital. “He was grateful.”
While waiting for rangers to arrive, the four Hampden Scouts stabilized Green and made sure he had enough water. When park rangers arrived, Cole, Graham, Forrest and Hanson assisted in removing the man from the steep trail.
The ordeal lasted until about 2 a.m., Hamilton said, noting that the boys had started their day at 8 o’clock the previous morning.
“This is exactly the kind of thing that Boy Scouts prepare for and learn about,” Hamilton said. “It was nice that they were able to help.”
Cole, Graham and Forrest are all students at Hampden Academy. Hanson is home-schooled.