Rescue crews in Holyoke, Massachusetts came to the aid of an injured hiker on Christmas Eve who was unable to descend the snow-covered trails after hurting his ankle near the top of a mountain.
Holyoke Fire Capt. Kevin Cavagnac said the injured hiker called 911 around 11 a.m. on Sunday. The 53-year-old man had injured his ankle on Mount Tom and was unable to walk.
News 22 reported that the hurt hiker kept in communication with authorities as they ascended the ice covered road on the mountain's south end that led to the radio towers at the top.
According to Cavagnac, the road and top of the mountain were covered in a layer of ice from the previous night's rain, making for dangerous hiking and rescue conditions.
The injured man was carried to safety using a metal basket stretcher, which was lifted and guided down the mountain by six men at a time, reported Cavagnac. The rescue team slowed their descent down the treacherous slope by tying ropes to trees and using a belay system.
The rescue operation took three hours to complete. The injured hiker was put in an ambulance and safely transported to an area hospital.