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Stranded hiker from LI rescued upstate

State Police and forest rangers rescued a Long Island resident and her companion who had been stranded overnight on a mountainside in the upstate Catskills region, officials said Monday.

Erin McKinstry, of Huntington, and Michael Leleszi were treated for exposure but did not need other medical aid after they were brought down Sunday from Slide Mountain in Shandaken Town, State Police said. Police did not disclose Leleszi's hometown.

Ulster County officials made a 911 call to State Police at the Kingston barracks at 5:48 a.m. Sunday, reporting that the two were stranded. In response, a trooper and two state Department of Environmental Conservation forest rangers set out to find them.

The two "had spent the night with clothes and shelter that were provided by other hikers they had encountered during the night," police said in a prepared statement. "Both were suffering from exposure and conditions prevented an extrication by helicopter."

McKinstry and Leleszi "were provided food, dry clothes and warmth by the searchers, and were escorted down the mountain after several hours," police said.

Emergency medical technicians evaluated the two and found that they needed no further medical treatment.

"The preliminary assistance provided to Leleszi and McKinstry by the original experienced hikers, in addition to that provided by the responding searchers, prevented a more serious outcome," police said.

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