Search For Missing Hiker In Olympic National Park Has Happy Ending

A 32-year-old Washington man missing in the backcountry of Olympic National Park since Sunday broke an ankle, but otherwise was OK when searchers found him.

Tim Bailey, of Mountlake Terrace, had slipped about 150 feet down a drainage on Saturday and injured his left ankle, according to park officials. He had planned to hike out of the park Sunday, and when he failed to do so his wife alerted Olympic authorities.

On Wednesday the man was found about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday in a drainage of the North Fork of the Sol Duc River when searchers heard sounds similar to gun shots. He was lifted out of the drainage by a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter and taken to a Port Angeles hospital for examination.

“He did all the right things,” said the park's incident commander, Kristin Kirschner. “Once he realized he would not be able to get out of the canyon under his own power, he stayed where he was, made himself as visible as possible, built a large signal fire, and waited for help.”

Search efforts by Olympic National Park search and rescue teams began on Tuesday morning. Once Mr. Bailey was spotted Wednesday, a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter was brought in at approximately 6 p.m.to hoist Bailey from the drainage.

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