A well-practiced Californian hiker, declared missing for six days after exploring the icy regions of the state’s Yosemite National Park, was recently discovered in good health after a lengthy searching plan. Thanks to the aerial view offered by a helicopter, a search party was able to locate hiker Alan Chow above Wapama Falls, a region near the park’s center that regularly sees overnight temperatures descending past the freezing point.
Scott Gedimen, a ranger for the park, explained that the 36-year old resident of Oakland managed to lose his way because the park’s reliable trailer markers had been obscured by snowfall. Gedimen went on to remark that Chow had been prepared for the worst possible hiking scenarios. Upon realizing that he became lost Chow stayed in place, rather than trying to walk about and wind up even turned around. Further, Chow set up his tent, relied on melting snow for drinkable water and had brought provisions and warm attire.
Chow, a regular when it comes to outdoor activities, had planned an overnight solo trip backpacking through the area and was last seen on February 17. He was not declared missing until three days had passed without Chow arriving to work in Alameda County and a co-worker expressed worry over Chow’s absence. Chow’s search party consisted of 60 people, most of whom focused the search efforts around the park’s Hetch Hetchy Reservoir; the location where Chow was last spotted. Upon being discovered, Chow was said to be in a healthy state and was reconnected with family members.
Yosemite National Park is located within the Sierra Nevada mountain range within California and takes up 747,956 acres. Although declared a world heritage site in the mid-’80s, the prior establishment of Yellowstone as a national park meant that Yosemite helped inspire America’s National Park System.