Sgt. Heidi Murphy
July 13, 2023

Thornton, NH – On Wednesday July 12, 2023 at approximately 9:50 a.m., the NH Fish and Game Department was notified of a hiker who had suffered a possible lower-leg injury while hiking down the Dickey Mountain Trail in Thornton. Nick Swertlow, 45, of Long Beach, California, his son, and two relatives had started hiking up the Welch-Dickey Loop around 7:30 a.m. beginning on the Welch Mountain Trail. By 9:00 a.m., the group had summited Welch Mountain and Dickey Mountain and were descending on the Dickey Mountain Trail. While descending, Swertlow slipped and fell backward injuring his lower leg. The injury was severe enough to warrant a carry-out as Swertlow could not walk.

Conservation Officers, members of the Pemigewasset Valley Search and Rescue Team and personnel from Campton-Thornton Fire and Rescue responded to carry Swertlow to the Welch-Dickey trailhead. The rescuers reached Swertlow at approximately 11:10 a.m. and were able to stabilize his injury. The group carried Swertlow approximately 1.7 miles to the trailhead safely, arriving at 1:00 p.m. Swertlow chose to use private transportation to Speare Memorial Hospital in Plymouth to obtain further evaluation and treatment.

New Hampshire Fish and Game is a self-funded agency which relies heavily upon volunteer rescue groups to complete the mission of search and rescue in the woodlands of the state. The public is encouraged to help support search and rescue activities in the state by purchasing a HikeSafe card New Hampshire Fish and Game also reminds hikers to prepare themselves before venturing out into the wilderness, including packing the ten essential items: map, compass, warm clothing, extra food and water, headlamp, fire starter, first aid kit, whistle, rain/wind jackets and pants, and a knife. For additional information, please visit