It took approximately 21 hours to get all six hikers off Mount Katahdin, according to a local search and rescue team
Six hikers have been rescued from Mount Katahdin in Maine after a member of their group lost consciousness, according to officials.
The 21-hour response began around 10 p.m. local time on Saturday, according to North Search and Rescue, a local non-profit search organization.
Five rescuers climbed two separate trails to reach Knife’s Edge, where the group of hikers was stuck, North SAR said. Two Baxter State Park rangers scaled the Dudley Trail, while three North SAR members scaled the Helon Taylor Trail.
Kevin Adam, director of Baxter State Park, said a ranger was able to locate the group late Saturday night, according to the Press Herald. The woman was unconscious by then, he added.
However, North SAR said rescuers were forced to shelter in place around 2 a.m. until morning after winds gusted up to 30 mph and temperatures dropped.
The next morning, the rescuers prepared for a National Guard helicopter to help evacuate some of the victims, according to the search-and-rescue group. The aircraft arrived just before 8 a.m.
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The 20-year-old was airlifted to a hospital in Bangor, the AP and Press Herald reported. Her condition has not been released.
The other hikers were able to climb down the mountain via the Helon Taylor Trail, North SAR said. It took approximately 11 hours to get the hikers back to safety.
Rescuers were occasionally “lifting, carrying and guiding” members of the group as they descended.
Another North SAR crew member raced up the mountain after learning that that group was running low on water. The crew member met the group halfway up the trail and gave them “something like 10 bottles of water.”
Family and friends greeted the five “very tired and sore individuals” at Roaring Brook following the lengthy rescue, according to North SAR.
Adam hopes this incident will be a lesson for other hikers who may push their personal limits while hiking the infamous mountain.
“If you get to the top or where you want to go and maybe it’s a little later than you would want, take the easiest route down,” he told the Press Herald.
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