No Stone Being Left Unturned as Search Teams Look for Missing Hiker In Difficult Conditions
Since Wednesday night when authorities learned Canadian hiker, Rick Eastep, had texted for help, teams of experienced searchers have been scouring the area looking for the 33-year-old man who is still missing.
“[W]e have utilized a lot of specialized rescue equipment and specialized search and rescue personnel,” explained Cheryl Antony of Shelter Cove Fire this morning. “Some of the equipment has been helicopters with infrared capabilities, ocean rescue boat, and multiple ATVs. We have had search and rescue dogs available. We have been in contact with the national weather service for updates on tides and weather…We continue to use everything possible to locate this missing person.”
Most of the searchers are volunteers for these specialized teams. Many spend their spare time training and raising money for the sturdy equipment needed. Some of them have been on the search since the first team headed out to look for Eastep. They’ve camped in the remote locations and hiked the rugged coastline when waves slapped over the trail.“It’s hard to explain how difficult it is to conduct a search and rescue in the lost coast,” stated Diana Totten, Incident Commander in unified command with Shelter Cove Fire and the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Department. She is also a member of Southern Humboldt Technical Rescue. “We have had high winds, tides, rain and darkness in some of the most rugged coastline in the state,” she pointed out this morning.
Sneaker waves are expected along the coast tomorrow.