Search continues for missing, injured hiker above Wahiawa

HFD resumes search for missing, injured hiker above Wahiawa
Justin Clark
Justin Clark

WAHIAWA, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Honolulu Fire Department rescue crews plan to resume a search Saturday morning for a missing and injured hiker in the hills above Wahiawa.

After three days of searching, there is still no sign of 32-year-old Justin Clark.

According to officials, Clark began hiking Tuesday morning on the Schofield-Waikane Trail. During his hike, he made a call to his mother indicating that he had fallen and suffered minor injuries. He also said he was off the trail but was attempting to make his way back to the trailhead.

The last reported contact with the hiker was a text message he sent on Tuesday at 4:15 p.m.

On Friday, more than a dozen firefighters were dropped off by helicopter into the dense vegetation, while family members and neighbors hiked trails and searched near streams for the 32-year-old.  Crews returned empty-handed after spending a third full day searching for Clark.

"They were looking everywhere, just along the hiking area," said search volunteer Eric Zhang on Friday.

On Thursday afternoon, Honolulu Fire Department Battalion Chief Alan Carvalho explained that crews were able to clear areas above and below the trail, and focused on the areas officials had coordinates from Clark's cell phone.

Some of Clark's friends have joined the search, including Tim Cambra.

"Call his name, walk on the trail, look for tracks, track him down," said Cambra Thursday before heading out on the search. "I'm a hunter, so I know how to do that kind of stuff."

Cambra said he spent several hours and hiked 15 miles, calling Clark's name, but there was no response.

Crews concentrated their search efforts in an area where Clark's cellphone last sent out GPS signals Tuesday night.

"One part of the trail that the guys cleared today was wide open and easy," said Carvalho. "But the part that was more difficult, with the cellphone pings, the folks said it was really treacherous there with a lot of climbing and bushwhacking to get through some of the areas that they searched."

"If he's hurt, maybe he can't climb the hill," said Cambra. "I'm thinking that maybe he twisted his ankle and he can't walk back up."

Clark is described as Caucasian, 6'2" and 200 pounds.

Crews plan to resume their search at first light on Saturday morning.

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