A wildfire attack crew looking for a newly started forest fire instead found a man who had been missing in the rugged backcountry of Garibaldi Provincial Park, north of Vancouver.
A statement from Squamish RCMP says the hiker missing in the park for two weeks was found safe on Thursday.
A search for Daniel Ring, 33, began on July 9.
Bryan Zandberg with the B.C. Wildfire Service’s Coastal Fire Centre said a three-person crew and a helicopter pilot were on their way to investigate a report of a fire when they spotted the man.
“They saw somebody down on the ground, arms waving and signalling for help,” Zandberg said.
RCMP have connected man with family
The area where Ring was spotted is very remote, he said.
“I can only imagine being lost for two weeks. I look at the map and he was in Elfin Lakes where they found him. It’s quite a distance.”
Police said Ring had been dropped off at the Elfin Lakes trailhead on July 7 with plans to camp solo at Rampart Ponds for a few days. He was reported overdue when he failed to meet to be picked up as planned.
The statement from RCMP says “there was literal cheer” in the detachment when members of the Coastal Fire Centre reported they had found Ring.
Cpl. Angela Kermer did not provide an update on his condition but said police have “connected him with his family.”
Zandberg said it was only after the crew landed to help the man that they found out he’d been missing.
The crew flew him to a waiting ambulance and RCMP, then went back to investigate the fire they were originally called about, he said.
“I think everybody’s really glad he was found,” Zandberg said. “It’s a silver lining, for sure.”