Mount Rainier National Park (WA)
Search For Hiker Comes To Successful Conclusion
A search for an overdue hiker ended on a positive note on Wednesday when he hiked out after spending an unplanned night in the backcountry.
The hiker, a 68-year-old man from Everett, Washington, set out on a day hike in the Kautz area on Tuesday. He was reported overdue by his wife late Tuesday when he failed to return home as planned.
Pierce County Sheriff’s Department deputies attempting to locate him late Tuesday evening confirmed that his vehicle was at the Kautz Creek trailhead, but were unable to find him. A search by a park hasty team the following morning was also unsuccessful.
The park’s incident overhead team was calling in more resources to ramp up the search when the hiker returned to the trailhead on his own accord. While hiking off-trail, he was overtaken by darkness, so he stopped hiking and bundled up in extra clothes and garbage bags to stay warm through the night. He was able to relocate the trail on Wednesday morning and returned to the trailhead.