Two hikers have gone missing at Glacier National Park and rescue teams are searching through wintry conditions and rugged terrain to find them.
Park officials announced that 50 searchers are looking for 32-year-old Neal Peckins of Virginia and 32-year-old Jason Hiser of Maryland, reports Yahoo! News.
Weather is the biggest challenge searchers looking for the two hikers are facing. They have so far found 18 inches of snow on the trail at higher elevations, which five-foot drifts in some areas, according to Denise Germann, a spokeswoman. Germann added:
“The area they are working in is very steep and exposed. It’s right along the Continental Divide, and it’s very windy.”
Germann added that more rain and possibly snow in higher areas is expected for Sunday. A helicopter dropped some searchers off inside the park on Sunday, but low clouds moved in to prevent aerial searches.
The two hikers were reported missing on Friday after failing to catch a flight home from Montana. Their vehicle was found late Friday. Germann added that it is not clear if the two missing hikers were prepared for cold weather, or if they had much experience with the back country of Glacier National Park, according to CBS News.
Germann added, “We believe they are still in the park. We don’t know what clothing or gear they’ve got.” Searchers believe the two men started hiking from the North Shore Trailhead at Two Medicine on the east side of Glacier National Park on Tuesday, planning to return to Two Medicine on Wednesday.
Park rangers and Flathead County Search and Rescue members are taking part in the search for the two missing hikers in Glacier National Park. Some of them are on foot, others on horses, while some are also searching with dogs.