Three Connecticut teens had to be rescued after heavy rain and darkness prohibited them from completing their descent of Mount Monadnock in New Hampshire Sunday night.
Eighteen-year-old Alex Masse of Vernon and 19-year-olds Sean Coughlin and Rob Burnham of South Windsor wanted to start 2012 off on top, so they decided to leave Connecticut on New Year’s Day and drive to hike Mount Monadnock.
“By the time we got to the peak, it was around 2:30 or 3:00. And by the time the sun was about to go down, the sun was starting to descend,” Burhnam said.
The teens lost White Cross Trail on a steep section called the “staircase” and couldn’t find their way back in the dark. “We were in the middle of nowhere, couldn't see five feet in front of us,” said Masse.
When the teens called 911, an operator was able to get their exact coordinates from the GPS on their phone. Their phones died shortly after making the call.
With no communication, the trio waited in the cold for more than three hours for help.
“We saw the lights, we immediately stood up, and I blew my whistle and said, 'Over here, over here,'” Masse said.
New Hampshire Fish and Game Department officials rescued the teens, who were only 30 feet away from the trail.
“Thank God for them, because we would have spent the night in the rain and the cold without food,” Coughlin said.
Both Masse and Burnham are leaving for the Marines in a few months and said the experience was a good test, but it won’t keep them from getting in one last hike before they leave.