A backpack and camping gear found with human remains in Kluane National Park has been linked to a missing German man.
But police are stopping short of saying whether the bones belong to the 24-year-old, at least for now.
Yukon RCMP Staff Sgt. Brad Kaeding confirmed that the backpack found about three or four days up the Donjek route belonged to Till Moritz Gerull, who went missing in 2011.
“At this point we are not associating one with the other,” Kaeding said when asked if the bones and the gear are connected. “There is more investigating that needs to happen.”
The remains were found late last fall. A more complete search, now underway, was held off until the weather warmed up.
The renewed search began yesterday, with a total of about 25 people involved, including officers with the RCMP, search-and-rescue volunteers from Whitehorse and Haines Junction, Parks Canada officials, representation from the coroner’s office and a police search dog team, Kaeding said.
“The search is looking for more evidence, more information, more human remains,” he said, adding that the bones that were discovered are only part of a skeleton.
The search is scheduled to last at least through the weekend.
RCMP first asked for the public’s help finding Gerull in June 2012.
He took a flight from Frankfurt to Whitehorse on June 8, 2011. According to the RCMP he “planned on walking through the forests of Canada.”
His family hadn’t had contact with him in about a year and reported him missing after he did not make his flight home.
Parks Canada calls the Donjek route “One of the most popular hikes for wilderness enthusiasts.”
It is about 100 or 120 kilometres long and takes approximately eight to 10 days.