Remains of an Idaho hiker reported missing in June 2016 have been found, according to a Wednesday Facebook post by Sheriff Scott Turner of the Idaho’s Boise County Sheriff’s Office.
Jack Thomas, a 66-year-old hiker had been hiking near the Queen’s River trailhead in the Sawtooth Mountains when he went missing, according to a Fox News report.
The Nampa man, who transmitted his location using a satellite GPS device June 15, did not return as expected the day after, according to a report from the Idaho Statesman.
A two-week-long search at the time for the missing hiker found no trace of Thomas, the report noted.
A significant lead emerged late last month when other hikers in the Sawtooth Range stumbled upon a wallet, some clothing and a hiking boot.
The hikers shared the GPS location of the items they found with Elmore County officials who determined the reported location was in Boise County, the Statesman report noted.
Turner told the Statesman officials were 99.9 percent sure they located Thomas, based on the items they found, the report added.
It took a few weeks to organize another search for Thomas, the report noted. County Coroner Pam Garlock joined a sheriff’s office detective and federal Forest Service employees on the trek to the reported remains.
Searchers found an ice axe, an iPod, a cell phone and, eventually, skeletal remains along with a day pack and a satellite GPS device.
The remains were located approximately half a mile from the trail. Thomas apparently deviated from the trail to explore nearby mountain lakes.
During his detour, he likely encountered “a tragic event” and became incapacitated, a sheriff’s detective speculated.
Jack Thomas was known as an experienced hiker who had a penchant for solo hikes in the backcountry.