Search for missing hiker on the Panhandle Gap enters day 4
Contact: Casey Broom, Information Officer, 360-569-6701
The search for the overdue day hiker, Edwin Birch of Tacoma, WA, continued today with ground crews searching the Ohanapacosh Park, Nickel Creek Basin and Summer Land areas of the Wonderland Trail.
Ground teams and air operations will continue to perform search operations tomorrow. The anticipated search area will be the steeper terrain in the area of the headwaters of the Ohanapacosh River.
Bellingham, Central, Everett, Inland, Olympic, Portland, Seattle, Skagit and Tacoma Mountain Rescue personnel are actively involved in the search efforts. Air support is coming in the form of a Bell206 and MD530 helicopter from Northwest Helicopters.
This section of the Wonderland Trail is snow covered above 6300 feet and patchy at other locations. The park advises that all hikers should come prepared with the ten essentials (http://www.mountaineersbooks.org/Assets/ClientPages/zz_TenEssentials.aspx) , and be prepared for difficult travel this time of year when snow can obscure park trails.