DEC says plane crashed into McKenzie Mountain Wilderness (update)

RAY BROOK – A small plane crashed into the McKenzie Mountain Wilderness near Ray Brook Thursday evening, the state Department of Environmental Conservation said this morning.

There were three men in the plane, and they declined medical treatment, officials said. After the crash, the men used a cell phone to call Essex County 911.

On Thursday night, Essex County Emergency Services Coordinator Don Jaquish said the plane crashed into the summit of Nye Mountain in the High Peaks Wilderness, about 8 miles away from the crash site near Big Burn Mountain and the Jackrabbit Trail.

That’s because the coordinates of the crash site were initially misinterpreted, DEC spokesman Dave Winchell said this morning.

“Initial location information given to Essex County by the subjects was misinterpreted (subjects only had Phase 1 cell phones without GPS and gave their own GPS coordinates to the County in an unfamiliar format),” Winchell wrote in an email. “Rangers recognized this issue and relocated to the Jackrabbit Trail just west of Lake Placid near Big Burn Mt., east of Haystack Mt.”