UPDATE: Missing Wisconsin Hikers’ Vehicle Found; Searchers Focus On Hoback Canyon
Searchers for three experienced hikers from Wisconsin reported missing Tuesday found their vehicle Wednesday, a spokeswoman from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said.
"The vehicle that belongs to these three young women was located in Granite Creek in Hoback Canyon and that's south of Jackson," Lori Iverson said Wednesday afternoon.
The Teton County Sheriff’s Office was notified on Tuesday about the three missing Wisconsin Andrews-Sharer sisters: Megan Margaret, 25; Erin, 22; and Kelsie, 16.
According to an article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Megan and her sisters grew up in Glendale, Wis. Megan worked at a Methodist church in nearby Whitefish Bay, and recently resigned to work on a farm in Wyoming. Megan was scheduled to join with her sisters on June 28 and hike for a few days, drive to Chicago, and on Tuesday fly to Switzerland to work on another farm.
Iverson said it's not unusual for campers and hikers to spend an extra day in the wilderness, but this missing persons case is different.
The Andrews-Sharer sisters' flight was scheduled Tuesday, but their vehicle was found on Wednesday, she said.
"They should have left the area several days ago in order to be able to drive to Chicago to catch that flight," Iverson said. "So they are at least several days behind schedule, and that's why it's different than someone just being missing for a day."
Conditions for hiking were not bad, even though there has been some rain and hail in the area.
The area has some low bear activity, Iverson said. "But there is nothing at this point to indicate that there has been any wildlife encounter."
Searchers have been able to see into the vehicle and saw some gear, but that doesn't mean that they didn't take some gear with them, she said. But searchers have not yet been able to get inside it to look further.
About 35 people from multiple agencies are looking in the Granite Creek and Swift Creek areas on the Bridger-Teton National Forest, she said. Besides foot searches, there are dog teams, searchers on horseback, and a helicopter.
"We are asking people not with the organized search team to stay clear of the area so they won't be impeding any of the efforts," Iverson said.
An incident command team has been set up in the Teton County Search and Rescue Building in Jackson. The search continues with these two agencies, the U.S. Forest Service, and Sublette County Search and Rescue.