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.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

After more than 2 weeks, still no sign of Ethan Sampson of Duncan

Still no sign of 28-year-old Cowichan Tribes man

Chemainus woman sets a new standard for 106-year-olds

Active lifestyle includes a trip to Scotland in the works for May

Local state of emergency ends in Cowichan Valley

No further threats of flooding in the Valley

Pressure builds for buses from Cowichan to ferry terminals

North Cowichan’s council now requesting bus connections be considered

VIDEO: 7 things you need to know about the 2020 B.C. budget

Surplus of $227 million with big spending on infrastructure and capital projects

Trees Cannabis director fined $1.5M for selling marijuana

Fine follows provincial crackdown on popular dispensary

World Cup skier from Okanagan dies suddenly at 19

Kuroda, who made his World Cup debut earlier this year, passed away suddenly Monday night.

Coastal GasLink pipeline investor committed to closing deal despite protests

Developer TC Energy Corp. — formerly TransCanada Corp. — is to remain the operator of the $6.6-billion pipeline

New highway proposed between Alberta and B.C.

The route would connect Red Deer to Kamloops

What’s in a name? The story of Revelstoke’s Mt. Begbie

It’s likely the iconic peak had several Indigenous peoples’ names before settlers arrived

Budget 2020: B.C. Liberals blast ‘Netflix tax,’ lack of economic plan

ICBC rates still go up, except in election year, Shirley Bond says

Teen snowmobiler from Kelowna found after air force’s overnight search

The teen had been missing since just after 6 p.m. on Monday

Two law enforcement trucks ‘deliberately’ set on fire in northern B.C., RCMP say

Police say they have video evidence of a person in the area of the truck fires

Most Read