ITHACA, N.Y. –– First responders rescued a hiker Tuesday morning after he fell roughly 75 feet onto a ledge overlooking a gorge in Buttermilk Falls State Park.

Fellow hikers alerted Tompkins County Dispatch just before 8 a.m., and firefighters from the Ithaca Fire Department and medics from Bangs Ambulance responded minutes later.

Emergency crews found the man on a ledge atop a waterfall inside the gorge with an ankle injury. They then used a rope system to lower themselves down and secure him in a rescue basket to be lifted up and out of the gorge and treated by paramedics.

Photo via IFD

The man was transported to the hospital by Bangs ambulance.

Ultimately, the rope rescue at Buttermilk took approximately three hours. NYS Parks staff and Parks Police assisted in the rescue efforts.

IFD is now taking the opportunity to remind everyone when hiking to “always carry a cell phone with you, hike with a partner, stay hydrated and take note of trail markers and landmarks” and according to their announcement of the incident, “know where you are in case you need to summon help.”

Anna Lamb is a reporter for the Ithaca Voice. Questions? Story tips? Contact her at