Missing Marine

This undated photo provided by the U.S. Marine Corps, 1st Marine Division, shows missing Marine 1st Lt. Matthew Kraft. Authorities in California searched for a sixth day Saturday, March 9, 2019, for Kraft after he failed to return from a backcountry skiing trip through the Sierra Nevada. (Courtesy of U.S. Marine Corps via AP)

BRIDGEPORT, Calif. (AP) — Authorities in Cal­ifornia searched for a sixth day Saturday for a missing Marine after he failed to return from a backcountry skiing trip through the Sierra Nevada.

First Lt. Matthew Kraft began trekking a section of the rugged Sierra High Route on Feb. 23 and was scheduled to complete it on Monday or Tuesday near Bridgeport, a town north­east of Yosemite National Park, 1st Marine Capt. Paul Gainey said.

Kraft is an infantry of­ficer who received survival training in the field.

“He has the skills to sur­vive in austere en­vi­ron­ments, and we’re hoping for the best here,” Gainey said.

Searchers located on Friday night a Jeep that Kraft parked at the start of his trip near In­de­pen­dence, about 130 miles south of Bridgeport, Inyo Coun­ty Sheriff’s spokes­woman Carma Roper said Sat­urday.

Crews from local, state and federal agencies were search­ing a 400-square-mile area from Yosemite down to Sierra and Inyo Na­tion­al Forests and Kings Canyon National Park, Roper said.

Thick clouds have hin­dered the search from the air, and winter weather has made searches by ski on the ground unsafe, she said. Another storm was in the forecast Saturday af­ter­noon through the weekend.

A series of winter storms has dumped rec­ord amounts of snow in the Sierra and led to av­al­anche warnings in the backcountry.

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.