Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue is looking for Murray Naswell, a local hiker reported missing after attempting a summit in Strathcona Provincial Park. Facebook photo

Search and rescue looking for Island hiker in Strathcona Park

Murray Naswell of Cumberland was supposed to hike up a summit Wednesday

Comox Valley Ground Search and Rescue (CVGSAR) has been looking for a Comox Valley man missing in the wilds of Strathcona Provincial Park since last Wednesday morning.

On Sunday, they did have a clearing in the weather and started conducted an air search. Teams also conducted a search with an RCMP dog.

“Nothing more has been found,” said Paul Berry of CVGSAR. “It will continue as long as we have an opening in the cloud.”

Murray Naswell, 50, of Cumberland had been camping at Kwai Lake on Tuesday and had plans to go up the summit of Mount Albert Edward on Wednesday with a couple he had met. However, the couple decided not to make the trip up the mountain.

“They went part-way and then turned back,” Berry said. “They turned around and came down.”

READ MORE: Comox Valley groundF SAR team cautiously pleased with provincial funding announcement

When Naswell did not return that evening, they contacted the park operator to report he had not shown up. Search and rescue was called Thursday afternoon and conducted some preliminary investigation before spending about 15 hours over Thursday and Friday morning looking for him. The couple confirmed Naswell was wearing only a white T-shirt, black shorts and a black fanny pack, and he had left his equipment at his camp.

“We have retrieved all of his other equipment,” Berry said.

The search team that got to Mount Albert Edward found some of his identification at the cairn. They had followed the route from Kwai Lake to the summit and continued looking in the areas of Mount Frink and Castlecrag Mountain.

Naswell does have experience with hiking and knows the park. CVGSAR says they do have some concern about his current emotional state. Berry clarified that Naswell had originally been due home Friday night, so he was not officially missing until Saturday morning.

Search and rescue kept up the search in light of poor conditions – specifically, heavy fog. The plan is to expand the search Monday with 17 teams from the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island if Naswell has not yet been found.

“The weather will play a huge role. It will dictate where we can place teams to start their search,” Berry said.

This could mean search teams spend five to six hours even getting to the locations where they can resume looking. Berry added that they should expect to prepare to be in the field for 24 to 36 hours, depending on conditions. They expect to look in drainage areas that still need to be searched but were delayed because of weather, as well as some potential sites Naswell’s family has identified as possibly being of interest or having sentimental meaning.

“We will be grid-searching those areas,” Berry said.

Just Posted

VIU scholarships created in honour of grad who died in plane crash

Awards related to indigenous studies and the environment will be offered in memory of Micah Messent

RDN residents display good recycling habits

Program shows most people comply with collection rules

Nanaimo’s angels help those in need at Christmas time

With Christmas Angels program, it’s often the little things that count, says Volunteer Nanaimo

‘We are all worried:’ Downtown hotel developers to meet with City of Nanaimo

PEG Developments say they’re pushing to break ground before Dec. 31 deadline

Students educate on environmental efforts at south Nanaimo school

VIU and Cinnabar Valley Elementary students team for conference

VIDEO: Boys help rescue Cariboo bear cub

The cub, weighing just 24lbs, has been taken to wildlife sanctuary in Northwest B.C. for the winter

Beefs & Bouquets, Dec. 5

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail bulletinboard@nanaimobulletin.com

Coins can add up to a merrier Christmas for kids

News Bulletin’s Coins for Kids campaign now underway

‘Things haven’t changed enough:’ Ecole Polytechnique anniversary prompts reflection

Fourteen women were fatally shot by a gunman at the Montreal school on Dec. 6, 1989

Bear raids freezer, gorges on Island family’s Christmas baking

Hungry bruin virtually ignored meat and fish, focused, instead, on the sweets

Give and Go donation drive for holiday charities happens this week

Food, clothes and cash sought at drive-thru donation drive Friday evening at Steve Marshall Ford

B.C. pharmaceutical company’s stocks double in value after successful lupus drug trial

More than 40 per cent of patients using voclosporin saw improvements in kidney function

Second warning on romaine lettuce from California region as another E. coli case reported

Two cases of E. coli have been reported in relation to the illness in the U.S.

Residents in B.C. city could face 133% tax hike in ‘worst case’ lawsuit outcome: report

An average home could see a tax increase of $2,164 in one year

Most Read