GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — Chief Charles Burger reports that the Fire Department rescued a 60-year-old injured hiker from Monument Mountain on Monday afternoon.
On Aug. 29, at 2:41 p.m. firefighters, along with Southern Berkshire Ambulance, responded to Monument Mountain on a report of a hiker who had fallen on the Squaw Peak trail a short distance from the top. The man had injured his ankle and was unable to walk.
Sheffield and Egremont fire departments were immediately called in for assistance to provide their ATVs and manpower, along with the Western Mass Technical Rescue Team.
The first responding crew found the man, who was hiking the trail with a friend, stable but unable to put weight on his ankle. Because he was at a very steep location on the trail, Great Barrington firefighters rigged a rope system to safely lower him almost 150 feet down the mountain with assistance from the Western Mass Tech Rescue Team. Crews then carried the man a quarter mile to the farthest point ATVs could reach and he was safely secured on the vehicle and transferred off the mountain. The hiker declined medical attention and was transported home by his friend.
In total, about 30 rescue personnel responded to the incident, which took approximately 2 1/2 hours. All crews cleared the scene by 5:30 p.m.
This is Great Barrington’s third rescue involving an injured hiker on Monument Mountain this month. The Great Barrington Fire Department also assisted the Monterey Fire Department on Friday with an injured hiker on the Appalachian Trail in Beartown State Forest.
Monterey and Stockbridge Fire Departments covered additional incidents in Great Barrington during the call, including a vehicle crash where a car caught fire in front of Monument Mountain Reservation that was unrelated to the rescue.
"I would like to thank Great Barrington's firefighters for their hard work, along with the other agencies who have routinely assisted us. It is a strenuous, time consuming job and yesterday's incident demonstrated team work at its best," Burger said. "Thankfully, the man suffered only a minor injury."
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