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Hiker found dead partway down cliff on OK Slip Falls trail

April 16, 2018
By JUSTIN A. LEVINE - Outdoors Writer ( , Lake Placid News

A hiker who died on the OK Slip Falls trail near Indian Lake last week suffered "considerable trauma" to his head and neck, according to the Hamilton County coroner.

State police identified 67-year-old Thomas J. Ullman of New Haven, Connecticut, as the man who was located late Friday night after he failed to return from a hike. According to police, Ullman had left his seasonal residence in Olmsteadville for the hike early on Friday and was reported missing at 5:30 p.m. that day.

State Department of Environmental Conservation forest rangers located Ullman's body partway down a cliff around 11 p.m. that night.

Article Photos

Paul Levine walks on the trail to OK Slip Falls in March of 2016.
(News photo — Justin A. Levine)

An autopsy was performed Monday at Albany Medical Center.

"There was considerable trauma to the head and neck," Coroner Virginia Jennings said Monday afternoon. "Conditions in the area that he was in were quite slippery."

Jennings said Ullman was found about 3 miles down the trail, which opened in 2014 after the state acquired the land. OK Slip Falls - which cascade about 200 feet - are located 3.2 miles from the road. Jennings said Ullman was not at the falls themselves.

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"Forest rangers responded and located tracks believed to be left by the subject," the DEC wrote in its weekly roundup of forest ranger actions. "At 11:03 p.m., forest rangers located Mr. Ullman deceased on a ledge part way down a gorge wall.

"At the request of State Police, the coroner authorized rangers to recover the subject and transport him out of the wilderness. With the temperature dropping and icy weather moving in, rangers worked overnight utilizing high angle rope techniques to complete the recovery."

DEC said Ullman's body was turned over to the coroner Saturday morning.



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