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Following on from this question, what searching methods and techniques are best used in scenarios where a single group member (or perhaps couple of group members) become lost and separated from a group whilst hiking?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

In my experience once a person(s) has been lost from the group first thing is to take a count of all members and ask when was the last time they saw the lost member(s). This will hopefully set a timeline of when they became lost. Then use the following searches.

  1. Retrace your steps, leave a member at where you started the search and if you have enough members leave one at any noticeable landmarks. If you do not have any means of communication set a time to regroup.

  2. Start a comb search from the point the person was lost back to the location you noticed the lost member.

  3. Start a radius search starting from the point the member was lost, move the center/distance of radius as needed.

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