BENTON, N.H. — A 39-year-old New Hampshire man who had been running and hiking with friends along the Appalachian Trail has died after collapsing during the outing.

New Hampshire Fish and Game officers say the man, whose name has not been released, had stopped breathing along the Beaver Brook Trail on Mt. Moosilauke in Benton after noon on Sunday. He had stopped to take in some views of the area after running and hiking for about four hours.

Conservation Officer Sgt. Thomas Dakai said friends administered CPR as a passer-by had to go down the trail a considerable distance to find cell service to call 911. He said the first members of a rescue team reached the victim around 3:30 p.m., but he never regained consciousness.

Dakai said the Beaver Brook Trail, which is part of the Appalachian Trail, is one of the most difficult trails to hike in the state. Because of the steep sections on the trail, rescuers were required to use ropes to lower the man multiple times along the trail during the mission. Rescuers reached the trail head in Woodstock on Route 112 at about 8 p.m.

Several agencies were involved, including the Pemigewasset and Upper Valley search and rescue teams; fire departments from Woodstock, Wentworth, Warren, and Lincoln; and the U.S. Forest Service.

An autopsy has been scheduled for Tuesday.

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