Search for missing hiker put on hold Saturday

WARNER SPRINGS (CNS) – The search for a missing hiker who disappeared in a wilderness area east of Palomar Mountain during a solo trek on the southern end of the Mexico-to-Canada Pacific Crest Trail was on hold Saturday.

On Friday, San Diego-area authorities — aided by search teams from Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties — searched in vain for a fourth day in hopes locating Chris Sylvia, 28.

Inclement weather prompted them to suspend their search for the experienced hiker around 4:30 p.m. Sheriff’s Lt. Robert Smith said the searchers would reevaluate their efforts after the rain and highland snow forecast for this weekend had passed.

Sylvia started his trek near state Route 74 in Anza on Feb. 12, and planned to hike for at least a week before contacting friends to pick him up, according to a sheriff’s department statement. He asked a friend to meet him near Warner Springs on Tuesday, but failed to arrive at his intended destination at a Buddhist temple on Chihuahua Valley Road.

Other hikers later found Sylvia’s identification amid some camping gear that apparently belonged to him in an open area near the temple.

Sylvia is white, 5 feet 8 and around 155 pounds with brown hair, hazel eyes, a goatee and a mustache. He left on his trip wearing green camouflage pants, a dark fleece jacket and brown hiking boots.

Anyone who might be able to help find Sylvia was asked to call the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department at (858) 565-5200.

Categories: KUSI