Exactly how much Christophe Chamely, 70, of Cambridge, Massachussetts, will be asked to pay will be determined by the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office, according to the newspaper. But Col. Kevin Jordan, chief of the law enforcement division of the state’s Fish and Game Department, told the publication he estimates the bill will be several thousands of dollars.
Chamely, who has a medical condition, set out to climb Mount Adams and Mount Jefferson on April 22 with the intent of returning that evening, according to the Union Leader.
After he was found, officials say he told them that he’d sent his wife a message telling her that he had decided to stop his hike and spend the night at the Mount Washington Hotel but she didn’t receive it.
She reported him missing the next day, triggering the deployment of rescue teams to the top of Mount Washington via a snowcat and the use of a National Guard helicopter.
According to the Union Leader, the message failed to send through the messaging program WhatsApp, and Chamely woke up the next day unaware there was a search underway. Authorities learned Chamely was at the resort when they contacted his family to give an update on the search.
“It’s very unfortunate that this message wasn’t received and that I didn’t check after that,” the 70-year-old told the Union Leader.
According to Jordan, Chamely’s problem was that he didn’t notify anyone he was stopping his hike and staying in a hotel.
“My position was that we had utilized a lot of people and a lot of resources for something that could have been avoided by a simple phone call,” he told the newspaper.
Chamely said the experience has left him with a great deal of respect for the Fish and Game Department.
“Everybody at Fish and Game had a superb, extraordinary, and professional care,” he said. “They were, of course, a little upset, but after that they were very caring.”