Search for missing man in Grand Teton National Park
(Moose, WY) – Search operations continued Friday in Grand Teton National Park for Cian McLaughlin, 27, missing for eleven days. McLaughlin’s last reported sighting was on Tuesday, June 8.
After days of intensive ground and air effort, McLaughlin’s research will shift tactics to a continuous, but limited, mode, according to the park’s press release. New clues will be explored as they arise. Park staff will continue to patrol the backcountry and look for signs of McLaughlin’s whereabouts.
On June 16, rangers received a report of a June 8 sighting of a man matching McLaughlin’s description by a local climbing guide. The guide reported seeing the man walking up the Garnet Canyon Trail, above the Garnet Canyon / Surprise Lake junction at around 3:45 p.m. on Tuesday, June 8. He described him as a lone hiker who had shoulder length hair and wore round glasses, a white shirt, shorts and a hat. The guide also reported that the man had tattoos on his arms and was carrying a water bottle.
Over the past six days, up to 70 park workers per day have conducted search operations in the Teton backcountry. These operations involved several teams of search and rescue dogs. Some of these efforts included navigating steep and technical terrain in dangerous areas. Many of these areas require a rope, ice ax, crampons, and other protective gear to access them.
Over 45 helicopter search missions were conducted. The park used RECCO air rescue technology from Teton County Search and Rescue, which aids in search and rescue incidents by sending a signal that reflects off RECCO chips or clothing and sometimes cell phones. The Civilian Air Patrol conducted air operations using Forward-Looking Infrared (FLIR) technology, which uses thermal cameras to detect heat sources.
The investigation team spoke to more than 140 people with advice and information about McLaughlin. The last reported sighting of a man matching McLaughlin’s description was on the Garnet Canyon Trail, a short distance above the Garnet Canyon / Surprise Lake junction at around 3:45 p.m. on Tuesday, June 8.
Updated missing person posters with McLaughlin’s photo and description will be posted throughout the park and overnight backcountry users will be asked to search for clues.
Anyone with information on McLaughlin’s whereabouts is urged to contact the National Park Service’s Directorate of Investigative Services:
Call or text the tip line: 888-653-0009
Online: www.nps.gov/ISB and click on “Send Tip”
Email: [email protected]