Troopers call off search for over-due Teller snowmachiners
A week after a search and rescue was initiated to look for Rex Iyantunguk, 37, and David Miller, 38, Alaska State Troopers concluded the official search efforts. According to AST spokeswoman Megan Peters, cabins along the trail and highway have been searched multiple times. In an email to the Nugget she wrote that AST has engaged with searches conducting ground searches between storms. These storms have brought a significant amount of snow and snow drifts to the Nome, Teller and the areas in between. “We have had civilian air assets, and National Guard assets fly the routes, and likely search areas when weather has permitted. The Civil Air Patrol has also been working with GCI to understand possible search areas using cell tower and cellphone communications,” she wrote.
Troopers say significant efforts have been expended in areas that were likely for them to have gone. The official search efforts concluded on Tuesday, March 5, after a week of extensive searching.
Local volunteers will continue to search as they are able and weather permits, she said.
Nome Volunteer Fire Dept. Chief Jim West Jr. said in a text to the Nugget that Teller SAR did not search Monday due to bad weather and that an R44 helicopter searched for the two men Sunday but didn’t see any sign of the two.
Miller and Iyatunguk, were reported overdue Feb. 26. They had left Teller Monday, Feb. 25, at noon, on a blue Polaris 550 to travel to Nome.
Editor's note: This story reflects a correction to the previous post. The snowmachiners left Monday, not Sunday.