Stefan Bissert - strange disappearances from U.S. national parks

Stefan Bissert, disappeared January 20th, 1992, Sol duc Hot springs, Olympic National Park, Washington State. 

Stefan Bissert, 23, of Bad Oeynhausen in Germany, was an exchange student at Oregon State University and a Fulbright scholar. He and another German student were hiking on January 20th, 1992, in the Sol Duc area on the west side of the Olympic National Park. They had planned to hike to Deer Lake, located four miles southwest of Sol Duc Hot Springs.

Deer lake, olympic national park

Stefan and his hiking partner separated for some reason and Bissert tried to hike out 23 miles to the Hoh River trailhead. When he failed to arrive, the friend reported him missing on January 21st. He was not dressed or equipped to camp overnight in the snow, wearing only jeans, a shirt and a windbreaker.  He carried a day pack with only a few pieces of fruit for food and had no hat, gloves or equipment for overnight camping. That route would have taken Stefan into the heart of the Olympic high country and into a winter storm that hit the area all week long.

The search included park rangers, mountain rescue teams with dogs, and helicopters.  Volunteer searchers including members of the Kitsap-based Olympic Mountain Rescue were deployed. After five days of intensive searching they failed to turn up any clues of the missing hiker and the search was called off.  Search and rescue teams had contended with rain, sleet, hail, snow, cold and extreme avalanche danger.

No sign of Stefan was ever located.