UPDATE: By early Sunday afternoon two members of the Fish and Game rescue party were still working their way through the tangled and challenging, Dry River drainage, trying to reach a road, said Lt. Wayne Saunders.
A solo hiker missing in The Presidentials walked out on his own late Saturday afternoon after teams of rescuers and a helicopter spent a rugged day searching for him.
The search began on Saturday morning for Michael Niles 31 of Bradford Massachusetts.
Supporters and opponents packed a committee room for the first hearing on a bill that would charge a fee to anyone needing a backcountry rescue.The proposed law would be the first of its kind in the nation.
New Hampshire Fish and Game performs more than 150 rescues each year at a cost of $300,000. Right now, that’s funded by hunting and fishing licenses, and snowmobile registrations. But a new bill would make those needing assistance pay a portion of the cost.
Typically winter hikers try to balance what they need with not turning themselves into recreational beasts of burden. But when searchers from New Hampshire Fish and Game head into the mountains they don’t have the luxury of light weight.
They have to be ready for almost any contingency including uncooperative if not perverse weather. And, that translates into pounds.
“I’d say my ruck weighs approximately fifty-five pounds,” says Conservation Officer Brad Morse, who often heads into The White Mountains looking for a lost or injured hiker.