This is hard to write this however I want all of you to know what has been going on the last few days.
As many of you by now know, Are was out running with us on Saturday up at Peacock Flats. We left to head up Kealia Trail and wanted to get in a good run on the trails or jeep roads up there. Are had participated in the Run with a View the week before. He is supposedly an experienced runner though new to running with our group. His friends have said he had an orienteering background. Orienteering typically involves using a map and compass to navigate across the land including going off-trail to get from point A to B and is popular in Europe.
Everything was going fine and after stopping to get water, Are and another runner left from Kuaokala Road, close to where the Kuaokala Trail intersects it, to head back over to the Kealia Road and head back to their cars at the base of Kealia Trail. Are and this other runner somehow got separated and Are never made it back to the parking lot below. There were other day hikers out there on the trail and they have stated they only saw one runner heading down Kealia Road.
Once this happened at some point HFD was contacted on Saturday afternoon and a search was started. This ended Saturday at darkness and a larger search took place on Sunday. This search included HFD Search and Rescue (SAR), the HFD helicopter and 15-20 HURT runners. All of the main roads were searched at least twice on Sunday with some even getting three searches. There was some off trail search done as well in an area that he could have tried to traverse. Again this search ended at dusk on Sunday.
Today, HFD SAR, HPD K9, SSD and SAR all participated as well as a few other HURT runners, some of Are's friends and Cheryl and myself. Cheryl has been extremely valuable to the search teams due to her extensive knowledge of the area and based on her knowledge of what took place on Saturday. We both have been impressed with the coordination, dedication and just hard effort the search teams have been doing. At the end of the day, everyone, including the K9's were very tired. Unfortunately we have just come up empty and found no sign of Are.
Emotionally this is tough on all of us. Every person who has been up there from the HFD to the various HPD members and just people in general familiar with the area just can't figure out why anyone would leave the wide, for the most part, well maintained jeep trails to head off track or cross-country. Now we all know this is something pig hunters do regularly but if you were disorientated or lost, why do that?
We just don't have an answer for that.
I want to take this time to thank all of you who have helped out. There have been so many and you know who you are. I also know people have been praying for Are to be found safe. This too is greatly appreciated.
Cheryl is planning on returning on Tuesday. HFD SAR will be back up about 9 a.m. I have not decided if I will be able to do that or not. At this point, others going up to help may or may not be a good idea. The areas left to be searched are all off trail. We were also told more people just adds more scents that can confuse the dogs. It is a tough call at this point.
I think that is all I have to say at this point.