Hiker found safe after search in Hoosier National Forest


FRENCH LICK — A missing 19-year-old hiker who entered the Hoosier National Forest Saturday was found safe Tuesday morning.

Indiana Conservation Officers responded to a call about the overdue hiker in the Hoosier National Forest late Monday night.

The 19-year-old hiker’s father became concerned after his son left for a hike on Saturday and failed to return on Monday, according to authorities.

Indiana Conservation Officers, Hoosier National Forest personnel and members of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department initiated a search just after 10 p.m. Monday.

Officers searched with K-9 units and all-terrain vehicles late into the night with no success. After resuming the search at daylight Tuesday with an unmanned aerial vehicle, an Indiana Conservation Officer located the hiker, who was clad in a tank top and shorts, along the Springs Valley Trail outside of French Lick.

Though exhausted, conservation officers said, the man was otherwise in good condition, and had a tearful reunion with his father.

The search had taken nearly 12 hours.

Indiana Conservation Officers reporting on the incident strongly encouraged all hikers to be prepared when taking to the woods. In addition to a cellphone, they said, necessary items should include a current map of the trails, compass, first aid kit, flashlight and extra food and water.




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