Northwood, NH – On Tuesday November 11, 2023 at 9:30 p.m., NH Fish and Game Conservation Officers received a call from the Northwood Police Department in regards to an overdue hunter off of Saddleback Mountain Road.
A landowner who gave a hunter permission to hunt his property called the Police Department because he was concerned that the hunter had not come out of the woods yet.
Upon notification, Conservation Officers, Northwood and Deerfield Police Departments responded to try to locate the hunter who was identified as 67-year-old [name withheld] of Chester, NH.
When responders arrived, the landowner was able to show them [the hunter’s] tree stand where [Mistake #1] all of his gear was found at the base of the tree.
It was quickly determined that [the hunter] had shot a deer and was probably tracking it. A NH Fish and Game K-9 was deployed to follow the track but was unsuccessful in finding Marshall. Officers also utilized their firearm to try to signal [the hunter] multiple times, but did not get a response.
After hours of searching at 1:30 a.m., voice contact was made with [the hunter] and then he was quickly located. [The hunter] was uninjured and was able to walk out of the woods under his own power.
Upon interviewing [the hunter] about what happened, he said that he left all of his gear behind, to include [#2] his flashlight and [#3] cell phone, because [#4] he thought he was going to find the deer quickly.
He kept following the deer deeper and deeper in the large tract of woods that is Saddleback Mountain and [#5] was overtaken by darkness, when he made the decision that he was going to spend the night in the woods.
[The hunter] also [#6] misplaced his firearm while walking around in the dark, which is why he was unable to signal back to officers.
This is a good reminder to all hunters and outdoor enthusiasts to always be prepared, and to have your gear available no matter the situation.
[The hunter] had all the gear he needed to either get himself out of the woods on his own or to make a call for help, but unfortunately [#7] he did not have that gear on him when he needed it the most.