Laurence Philippsen is seen at the top of Kla-anch Peak in this undated photo. His remains were found earlier this month in the backcountry near Gold River, where he had embarked on a solo trip in early July. Photo courtesy of Lindsay Elms

Body of missing hiker recovered near Gold River

Laurence Philippsen had set out on a solo backpacking trip in early July

The body of an experienced mountaineer who had embarked on a solo trip in Strathcona Park in early July has been found.

Laurence Philippsen, 65, of Black Creek, had left on June 29 for a 40-kilometre trip into the rugged backcountry near Gold River. He had planned to spend three days in the backcountry, and left a detailed trip plan at home. He was expected to return July 2.

Crews initially searched a remote area for four days that included technical terrain around five mountain peaks, each taller than 6,000 feet.

RELATED: Search for missing hiker suspended once again

When new information emerged about where Philippsen was thought to be heading, friends and colleagues from the mountaineering community, search and rescue crews, and RCMP members started the search once again.

But according to a Comox Valley Search & Rescue post on social media, “no clues were produced to lead us to Laurence’s whereabouts amidst this rugged and remote area of Vancouver Island,” and the search was again suspended.

His missing person file remained open with the RCMP and according to friend Lindsay Elms, friends of Philippsen continued to pursue their own adventures in the area, “knowing that Laurence was out there somewhere, and although not a pleasant thought, were hoping they might find him.”

In a social media post on Aug. 20, Elms shares that with Philippsen’s family’s blessing, he is notifying the climbing community that Philippsen was found, about a week earlier on the south side of Mount Laing.

RELATED: UPDATE: Search suspended for missing Vancouver Island hiker

“There is comfort, especially for the family, knowing what happened,” writes Elms.

According to Elms, it appears Philippsen fell and died instantly.

The BC Coroners Service confirmed it was investigating a death from the Strathcona Park area near Mount Laing from earlier this month. The investigation to determine cause of death is in its early stages.

“As mountaineers, we know only too well that there is this side to mountaineering,” writes Elms. “There is passion, but also pain.

“I will remember Laurence for many things, but it was his love of adventure and his willingness to explore new places that brought us together in the mountains.”


@marissatiel
marissa.tiel@campbellrivermirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Strathcona Park

 

Laurence Philippsen is seen at the top of Tsitika Mountain in this undated photo. His remains were found earlier this month in the backcountry near Gold River, where he had embarked on a solo trip in early July. Photo courtesy of Lindsay Elms

Just Posted

‘Bonnie’ and ‘Henry’ among latest litter of service dog puppies

B.C. Alberta Guide Dogs names two pups after provincial health officer

B.C. salmon farms challenge activists’ demands for site closures

News reporting also unfair, inaccurate and distorted

Horgan frustrated as Transport Canada mandate for BC Ferry riders returns

Transport Canada reinstates rule that bans passengers from lower decks

NDP solution to homelessness is to ‘warehouse’ people: BC Liberal leader

Andrew Wilkinson made a campaign stop in Campbell River and was asked about homelessness

Victoria Humane Society takes revenue hit after donation bins vandalized

Organization removes clothing donation bins after contents removed, scattered

105 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death as health officials urge B.C. to remember safety protocols

There are currently 1268 active cases, with 3,337 people under public health monitoring

B.C. nurses report rise in depression, anxiety, exhaustion due to pandemic

A new UBC study looks into how the COVID-19 response has impacted frontline nurses

National child-care plan could help Canada rebound from COVID-induced economic crisis: prof

A $2 billion investment this year could help parents during second wave of pandemic

Search suspended for Indigenous elder last seen mushroom picking in northwest B.C.

Mushroom picker Thomas (Tommy) Dennis has been missing since Sept. 16

16 MLAs retiring from B.C. politics add up to $20M in pensions: Taxpayers Federation

Taxpayers pay $4 for every dollar MLAs contribute to their pensions

Pedestrian dies in motor vehicle incident along the highway near Nanaimo Airport

Police investigating scene where 37-year-old woman from Nanaimo died

B.C. VOTES 2020: Few solutions offered for ‘out of control’ camping

B.C. Liberals, NDP spend millions as problem keeps growing

Parksville pedestrian airlifted to hospital in Vancouver after nighttime collision

Police report man’s injuries were ‘significant’ but not life-threatening

Shoplifting suspect allegedly spits on worker at store in Nanaimo

Suspect became aggressive when confronted by loss prevention officer at Walmart, say RCMP

Most Read