Search For Missing Hunter Suspended

The Skamania County Sheriff’s Office suspended search efforts over the weekend for a hunter missing in the Forlorn Lakes area east of the Indian Heaven Wilderness in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest.  37-year-old Joel Presler of Vancouver was last seen last weekend.  Skamania County Sheriff Dave Brown says the King County Sheriff’s Office air wing unit searched the area by helicopter on Saturday.  Observers in the helicopter reported good visibility in the search area and they were unable to detect any tracks or other clues that might have been associated with Presler.  Snow depths at Presler’s truck, which was located on Wednesday, are close to 36 inches and the depths increase with elevation.  Four days of organized search efforts produced no clues, and Brown indicated snow conditions and forecasted weather will continue to reduce the probability of having success at this time.  Brown asks that anyone who may have been in the search area and comes across any clues to call 911 or contact the Skamania County Sheriff Office at (509) 427-9490.

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