KODIAK- A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter aircrew located an overdue, 21-year-old female hiker on Inian Island, Tuesday. The Jayhawk aircrew safely located the woman at approximately 11:43 p.m. and transported her to Sitka for further care. She was reported to be mildly hypothermic and disoriented, but otherwise in good condition.
Sector Juneau Command Center watchstanders received an agency assist request from the Alaska State Troopers to search for the missing female hiker. She was reported to have been last seen wearing hiking boots, gray sweatpants and a sweatshirt.
“This case had a great outcome and it serves as a recurring reminder how easy it is for people to get disoriented in Southeast Alaska’s rugged environment.”
She had departed her cabin located in Hobbit Hole for a thirty minute to one-hour hike with no means of communication. AST’s began a ground search Tuesday at approximately 10:00 a.m.. District 17 Command Center granted the Sector Juneau request and launched an Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew to search with forward-looking infrared radar technology to conduct an extended shoreline search.
“This case had a great outcome and it serves as a recurring reminder how easy it is for people to get disoriented in Southeast Alaska’s rugged environment,” said Lt. Cmdr. Jason Condon, an Air Station Sitka Aircraft Commander on the case. “Even a thirty minute hike can turn into an eight hour ordeal. When we venture outside in Southeast Alaska, we should be prepared for the elements, be informed about our surroundings, and have a way to communicate if something unexpected happens.”