BAXTER STATE PARK, Maine — It took 10 hours and more than 40 people to carry a 20-year-old hiker from Connecticut off Mount Katahdin Wednesday after she fell and injured herself while descending the Hunt Trail, park officials say.
The woman, who is from from Lakeville, Connecticut, but was not identified, was leading a group of hikers from Camp Kieve-Wavus based in Nobleboro when she fell and was injured about 2.9 miles up the Hunt Trail at the base of the rocky “Hunt Spur,” Baxter State Park Director Jensen Bissell said in an email.
She cut her leg badly when she fell at about 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, he said by phone.
“Unable to walk, the hiker was treated by park rangers and then carried by litter back to Katahdin Stream Campground, where she was transported by ambulance to Millinocket Regional Hospital,” Bissell states in the email. “The evacuation required the effort of more than 40 people for nearly 10 hours.”
“We’re not doctors. We treat and stabilize people and then get them out of there,” Bissell said, adding that the 10 hours it took to get the injured woman off the mountain started after she was stabilized. “They were out until 9 or 10 [p.m.]. It was a long day.”
In addition to Park Rangers, rescuers included personnel from the Maine Association of Search and Rescue Wilderness Rescue Team, the Maine Forest Service, Maine Warden Service, Maine Conservation Corps and Park volunteers.
Park officials said that more than 80 percent of hiking accidents on Katahdin requiring evacuation occur on the descent, and they urge hikers to recognize that they are more tired later in the day.
“Falls on the descent can be very hazardous,” Bissell said.