Hikers are unprepared for deep snow and freezing rain on Mount Washington, New Hampshire rescuers say

Two Canadian hikers ultimately called 911 for help after encountering wintry conditions on Mount Washington, New Hampshire officials said.

The wet and tired hikers called for rescue at 5:18 p.m. Thursday, May 9, after being unable to proceed in deep snow, New Hampshire Fish & Game said in a news release.

Three conservation officers met the hikers at 10:10 p.m. and escorted them to a road where they were herded down the mountain, the agency said.

“The hikers did not take into account the winter conditions with freezing temperatures and rain,” the press release said. “They weren’t prepared for deep snow either.”

Conservation officials reminded visitors that winter conditions continue in the White Mountains, the release said.

According to Brittanica, Mount Washington is the highest peak in the White Mountains at 2,000 meters.

About 400,000 people visit the mountain each year, the New Hampshire Bulletin reported.

According to the Mount Washington Avalanche Center, about 25 people need to be rescued on the mountain each year.

How to prepare when hiking

If you're planning a hike, there are ten things you should definitely bring with you, according to the National Park Service:

  • Navigation: Bring a map, compass and GPS system. Make sure you study your route in advance and understand how to use the aids.

  • Sun protection: Sunglasses, sunscreen, and a hat can help protect your skin and eyes from UV rays.

  • Insulation: Be prepared for rapidly changing weather conditions with a jacket, hat, gloves, raincoat and thermal underwear.

  • Relief: A flashlight, lantern, and headlamp can provide light when you're stuck in the dark – and don't forget to bring extra batteries.

  • First aid equipment: It's a good idea to have a first aid kit on hand when hiking. Check the expiration date of items before packing them.

  • Fireworks: Matches and a lighter can help start the fire and serve as a distress signal in times of need.

  • Repair kit and tools: Tape, a utility knife, a screwdriver, and scissors can come in handy if things break while walking or you need help.

  • Power supply: In case something goes wrong, you should take extra food with you for the day. Park officials recommend “salty and easily digestible snacks.”

  • Hydration: When walking in hot weather, drink water often before you feel thirsty. Keeping the body hydrated is “paramount,” park officials said.

  • Emergency shelter: Packing a tent, emergency blanket, tarp and bivouac can help you be prepared if severe weather breaks out or your plan takes a turn.

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