Search Called Off For Missing Hiker


Olympic National Park officials have called off the search for a German exchange student missing a week in the snow-covered mountains.

The risk to searchers outweighed the chance of finding Stefan Bissert, said park spokeswoman Cat Hoffman.

Bissert's parents arrived from Germany yesterday and were advised of the search before it was called off, she said.

Bissert, 23, of Bad Oeynhausen, was an exchange student at Oregon State University. He and another German exchange student were hiking Jan. 20 in the Soleduck area on the west side of the park.

They separated and Bissert tried to hike out 23 miles to the Hoh River trailhead. When he failed to arrive, the friend reported him missing on Jan. 21.

Bissert was not dressed or equipped to camp overnight in the snow, park officials said.

The search included park rangers, mountain rescue teams with dogs, and helicopters.