Game wardens rescued two Ellsworth women who got lost on Great Pond Mountain in Orland on Saturday night.

Patricia Mason, 36, and Kathy Doyle, 60, began a hike on Saturday afternoon, but the season’s early sunset came just as they headed back down and they lost the trail, the Maine Warden Service said.

Mason used her cellphone to call for help around 5 p.m., contacting the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office, her family and 911.

Three game wardens and two Hancock County sheriff’s deputies followed the GPS coordinates from Mason’s call. First they found the women’s vehicle at the trailhead, and then they climbed the mountain and found the lost hikers near the summit.

“With temperature in the 20s, and hypothermia a concern, the pair had built a small fire to keep them warm,” the warden service said  Sunday.

After putting out the fire with snow, the wardens, deputies and the hikers returned down the mountain.

“Before heading out, it’s always important to tell someone where you are going and when you plan to return,” Sgt. Ralph Hosford of the warden service said in a statement. “Make sure you take enough food, water, and clothing in case you have an unexpected stay in the woods. It’s also important to stay calm if you become lost as the decisions you make could save your life when the weather changes. Start a small fire if possible; it can provide warmth, a signal for rescuers, and can help you stay calm and focused if lost.”

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