Aerial Search for Randy…

January 19th, 2016

by Cynthia

When Forrest told me a couple days ago that he’d been in touch with a guy from Durango who volunteered to fly his little plane to Santa Fe to help in the search, I thought that was really cool… Forrest explained he wasn’t going along to be the spotter but he had someone else lined up to go. When I expressed gratitude that Erin the rescue girl who found Leo was helping out again, he said no, not Erin, YOU!

For a moment I had a sick feeling…I sort of hate to fly but didn’t want to tell Forrest.

I didn’t sleep but two winks last night…I actually was excited that I was going to get to fly and be the spotter…I secretly prayed for the calmest day of wind ever to take place in New Mexico…I mean like minus knots…

Forrest met me at the little Santa Fe Municipal Airport and then about a half hour later than scheduled, we watched William make his descent and his wheels touch down. I thought, my God, it’s a toy…it is really small! (By the way, I had conversed with William the night before and when he mentioned he had built his plane from a kit, I did not get a warm fuzzy feeling! More praying took place the moment we hung up.)


Forrest is telling William how to “drive”…

Trying not to look terrified...

Trying not to look terrified…


buckle up…William is 6’4” tall…he barely fit. I think the canopy was almost touching his ball hat when it closed.

Our strategy was to fly as low as possible along each mesa edge of the river, with the opposite edge out my window so I could concentrate on looking for Randy along the river. Earlier I had seen the picture where Randy was wearing a light gray parka with blue trim and a royal blue backpack. The blue pack should stand out, we hoped. After sweeping both edges, we started moving east and then west out across the mesa top and sweeping the mesa tops. We’d start at Buckman Road and fly south to Cochit Lake where we’d turn and fly north again. Sometimes we’d fly really low around the high peaks in the area, in case Randy had wanted to get to high ground for a cell signal. William would tip the plane with my wing pointed down so I could get a great view of the terrain, and hopefully see his blue back pack. Sometimes, we’d concentrate on the smaller side canyons and arroyos, in case Randy tried to walk back via the high ground and needed a path from the river. Again, William tipped the plane sideways, alternating his wing with mine. We did this for 1 hr 15 mins.

I did not take many pictures but here are a few. This gives the folks who aren’t familiar with this particular area an idea of what the search teams are facing…


William got me and his little plane safely back to the airport. I was so pleased I did not vomit in his beautiful little plane (or anywhere else)…his pride and joy. (It wins a lot of awards at plane shows…it was like riding in a Ferrari..all leather and shiny wood inside. I even had to take my boots off to be allowed inside it.)

The end of the day was both solemn and satisfying…Sacha said it best when she described the couple dozen searchers who dragged themselves into the restaurant after a day of searching… frazzled, tired, and sad that we did not find Randy. But, we all made our journey safely back from the river’s edge, no one had to be towed out of the mud (which was a miracle in itself), and we have newly found friends…

As always, Forrest made the rounds at the tables where nearly two dozen hungry searchers eventually found their way. He took time to thank and hug and shake hands with each individual and ask him/her about their day. He made everyone feel special…

The first group of searchers to arrive...I guess we were the hungriest. We added several more tables as the crew expanded...

The first group of searchers to arrive…I guess we were the hungriest. We added several more tables as the crew expanded…

What a day…what a fabulous group of folks!

Sincerely, Cynthia

135 thoughts on “Aerial Search for Randy…

  1. Great story, Cynthia. Glad you got your color back in your cheeks after riding in the “Ferrari in the sky”. Beautiful photos. Once again, I commend your dedication and compassionate spirits. Thank you everyone.

  2. Cynthia, it appears the lake is frozen up into the canyon–is that correct? Randy may not have expected that. If he did, it would have limited his exit plans.

    We’re you able to fly above Frijoles and what was the visibility like? Do you know if there are plans to hike into Frijoles at river level yet?

    Great update!

  3. Thanks to William for the use of his plane and flying in to aid in the search for Randy. And thanks to you Cynthia for being brave enough to go up in that little plane! We all appreciate your help and willingness to do all you can to find Randy and sharing your experiences with us. Many of us aren’t able to help but are still deeply concerned about Randy and are grateful for all you searchers.

  4. WOW! What a beautiful plane William. Nice tail number too…
    I once built an airplane. It came in a plastic envelope and cost 10¢.
    Apparently yours travels faster and further than mine did.

    Thanks very much for making the air search possible…
    Incredibly generous…

    I am envious Cynthia..

  5. Cynthia, You are so brave! I would’ve thrown up just knowing he would be tilting the plane sideways. I’m sorry you didn’t find Randy. But, we’ve learned a lot from this whole event and I can’t imagine how everyone in the air and on ground must feel as this loss becomes real.

  6. Obviously your plane is a labor of love William. Thank you for taking time to help in the search for Randy.

    Cynthia, you are one brave woman, I have flown in a small two seater hobby plane. The pilot let me handle the stick. That was a thrill. Then the pilot did a loop de loop and I went ghost white.

    Thanks so much to all for their efforts.

  7. I guess its time to put this all to rest. I sure hope people are more careful in the search. Forrest does not look so happy. I wish people would do things to lighten his spirit. He after all deserves it don’t you think. I’m glad all that is lost is found. now its time for all that is hidden to be found. TY for all you do all of you JB and Titan

  8. Cynthia, happy for you that you got to have the experience. It would have been an even greater experience if either of you had spotted Randy, especially alive and well.

    William, you are truly a special guy. This world needs more men like you!

  9. You all did a wonderful job…I truly wish I could have been there to help. You earned every bit of that dinner and more, and I’m sure wherever Randy is, he is in awe of the effort put into finding him. I’m not giving up hope yet. I know time is the enemy, but there have been stories of survival what seems to be impossible odds. Randy could be one of those stories, and we can’t give up hope yet.

    Cynthia, you’re an outstanding woman. I admire you so much.

    William, that plane is amazing! And so are you!

  10. Also, in the second aerial picture, near the top right, on the very edge of the water where that straight line “ridge thing” is, is what looks like a person. I know the perspective is probably wrong (the person would be a giant, maybe) but interesting and maybe worth someone with more knowledge than I to take a look? It even casts a shadow, like a person would…

  11. Thank you for your help William with your plan. Will there be a continuance of the search? Was the search just concentrated on the area along the river side or was it expanded out some in case Randy changed his ideas and decided to hike back a different way? Thank you also to keeping us up to date.

  12. I hate to comment this, but Randy may be under water.
    A diver could be hired to search the area where his boat was, since Leo wouldn’t leave that spot.
    It’s highly unlikely Leo would remain there and Randy hike out without him. Even if Leo went with Randy, if he got hurt, Leo would still be with Randy and NOT the boat.
    I know searchers want to believe he is alive, that’s why the intense ground search, but don’t ignore the obvious!
    The search area should be in the water, despite hopes that he is alive, no physical evidence supports it. The last contact is Leo, at the water.
    There comes a time when you have to switch search techniques, now is the time.
    The water should have been the FIRST thing searched, there was a water rescue dive team nearby practicing. Land/air search could be proceeding during the water search.
    Call the authorities and get them out there! Or hire a private diver.
    I know searching water implies he’s gone, but provide closure for his family!

    • 3 divers were in the water yesterday. Not saying he’s not…I think it’s probable or in Frijoles…but I think there would be a sign of his waders or wet suit on shore if he went in there.

    • Donna, if you read the news articles – it says they sent out divers Saturday and Sunday. What is posted here are not the only search groups in action. The state has also been organizing tireless efforts with volunteers.

      • Thanks Ralph. I’m trying to keep up with the news while working a crazy schedule. Wish I were there to help, just makes me sick to be stuck here! I’m so frustrated!
        Praying and my candle is lit!

  13. Good people to look out there in the freezing cold thanks for the story Cynthia I would have puked in that small plane Hope they find find him.

  14. Good morning Cindy, thanks for the update and photos of the search area. I know that you and I share the same feelings when it comes to flying so I really commend you. You have never been one to back away from a challenge.
    That was pretty awesome that William brought his plane to be used in the search and the searchers that showed up from near and far are amazing.
    I met Randy and Leo at the book signing back in Sept. That personal connection makes this situation all the more difficult.
    God Bless all of you!

    • Tom,

      I was with Cynthia when Forrest asked her to go flying. She didn’t even pause for a second before she said yes. I only found out she was afraid to fly after it all went down. She has more courage than a lion.

  15. For those of you who don’t know… New Mexico state Search and Rescue has had way more volunteer people out looking for him before this group of people decided to take it upon themselves to look for him. The trained Search and Rescue had planes and divers in use for long operational periods, looking in many of the same places this group has searched. Maybe we should all consider donating to the local Search and Rescue groups so that more trained people are out there.

  16. Nobody is responsible for faulty decisions made by those unaware of wilderness solo jaunts in winter. Most of us have solo hiked into wilds long before any treasure hunt simply because we enjoy it; we knew the risks then, we know them now. A misplaced step, compass bearing not taken, Lions, roads turned slick from minimal snow or rain, bad people(murders on AT), along with many many other minute details which in a moment can turn dream trips into nightmares; all possibilities faced with only treasure iin search of called solitude. This isn’t about Fenn, it’s about Randy.

    • bryanholz, yes, it is about Randy. Knowing the risks is important and can be gleaned from many of the information centers/visitor centers. I found everyone helpful in all respects for my adventures. I think my willingness to learn and acknowledge that I don’t know everything is what has helped in keeping me safe. This is a thrill of the chase and should not be a thrill of the race. IMO. I am sorry Randy ventured out at this time of the year and alone (no other human companion). As you state, every adventure has risks which should not be compounded by haste. IMO The thrill of the chase involves a lot of patience before the catch.

    • You nailed it! Safety is our responsibility, danger is all around. Even crossing a streat on a Monday morning could be dangerous.

  17. So much information misinformation and theories floating around.

    Believe it will come down to a few professional outdoors men to find Randy.

    Have spent a few months in the back country alone……..Minus 20 to 30 at times.

    It might take 2 to 4 weeks, whatever it takes to get the job done………

    No man left behind………….

    Can make this dedication. Who is the master coordinator?

    We have people doing this doing that etc.

    • The state of New Mexico has a Search and Rescue group. From what I have read on their websites, they are very well trained and many resources. Maybe we should send them our resources -be it equipment, people, hours, or money.

  18. Cynthia, Thank you for the update and all you are doing. Glad you didnt get sick in Williams beautiful plane. You bit the bullet and faced your fear, We are proud to have you as one of the leading searches.
    William, Thank you for dedicating your amazing plane and time to search for Randy.
    A big Thank You to all the searchers for so lovingly giving there time and braveing the cold with Boots on the ground.
    I am still sending prayers and staying positive that that he will be found safe.

  19. Thanks William and Cynthia, Really wish I could be there to help. It’s nice to have some current aerial photos of the area we can look over in photoshop/lightroom….

  20. Cynthia and crew: You are all appreciated and admired for working so hard to find Randy. I am grateful that there are kind and caring people like all of you in the world.

    I am wondering if this scenario may have happened: Randy was thrown or fell from the raft and it continue down stream with Leo in it. I’m even wondering if the raft got away from him when he was “putting in” and then began to scramble down river on foot in search of his faithful friend. In this scenario, the raft floated down river and was eventually blown to its resting place instead of being dragged there by Randy as we have suspected. Were there footprints or drag marks suggesting that Randy dragged the raft to its location? Has the river bank up river from the raft been searched? Sorry if this was already considered. Thanks again for all of your efforts.

    • Cynthia has a cast iron constitution. She was not afraid for a second. Sacha too. I have learned that when those two get together it is best to just get out of their way. f

  21. I read that the State Search and Rescue Volunteers had multiple planes and divers out on Saturday and Sunday too. I hope some clues get found soon.

  22. Out here in Virginia we have regular volunteer groups that go looking for lost folks. I imagine those are the groups that were out this weekend. Maybe a GoFundMe site should be set up to help them. Might be good to have more people looking who know the area.

  23. Forrest, Cynthia, Sasha and all the other dedicated big hearted Warriors are doing such good work! If only Randy could know…

  24. Such herculean efforts and resources have been put forth by so many. From the front line BOG (and air!) to the folks trying to help by looking for the scantest clue from home, this has been a demonstration of the best in people. Thank you.

  25. It was said that he had waders and most likely a backpack.

    If he wanted to returned back on foot, he would have taken Leo with him and left some of his belongings back to reduce weight. Leo is not a big dog so there is no reason to leave him behind unless he wanted to cross the river and go to the other side.

    Since no belongings were found near the boat, he most likely wanted to cross the river and check the other side for a very short time. That is why Leo was left where the boat was.

    If he had successfully crossed the river, he would have taken the waders off and left them there.

    The likely but very sad scenario is that something unfortunate must have occurred when he was in the water trying to cross.

    very very sad situation.

    • I totally agree.
      The biggest clue is the dog.
      If Randy was anywhere on the East side of the river, the dog would be with or near him.
      (how well was the raft area searched. He could be laying in bushes near buy trying to stay warm from the cold and gave in to hypothermia.)

      If Randy was on the West side of the River. The dog would probably have followed him up or down river, even if he couldnt cross, until Randy went inland. Unless it is a very trained dog and Randy told it to stay.

      Plus, I agree that there would be some evidence on the West side bank, most likely taking of the wetsuit or waders as you wouldnt want to hike with them.

      If Randy went into the river and went under and was swept away, then the dog wouldnt know what to do and just stay put as there wouldnt be any scent to follow.

      • That may also explain why there was no food left behind for Leo. He was thinking probably it would be a quick search on the other side of the river.

      • This is such a very sad situation. From where I am all I can do is pray. I can’t break away from work and I don’t have the funds if I could.

        It’s very sad, but this sounds like the most likely scenario, Mark. When crossing a river, one single step can be the difference between knee-deep water and water that’s over your head. In murky water you can’t even see it coming. Even if it’s not an abrupt drop-off…a slick slope under the water can put you in the river before you can even think about it…and waders are NOT your friend for an unplanned swim in a river. You’re better off with a belt around the outside of the waders…but still…if water gets inside your waders you can drown very quickly.

        Another sad reality is that if Randy did suddenly end up in the river…over his head…then the shock of the cold water can cause involuntary inhalation…which is near instant. It’s a good explanation of how and why a beloved little dog was left alone. It’s pretty obvious that Randy wouldn’t do that on purpose.

        This situation is so very sad. It could happen to even a seasoned searcher. Please be safe everyone…and search with a companion…or in a group.

        • Of course, I’m still holding out hope that Randy crossed safely and just left his waders on for warmth…and Leo just stayed with the raft.

      • You are right Mark, the biggest clue is the dog, waiting alone, hungry at that location. Unless Leo is a well trained bird dog told to stay, he would be next to Randy where ever Randy is. Unless, Randy is underwater. If Randy fell into a canyon or mine shaft, the dog would be waiting top side last place Randy was.

        Regarding waders…No one would willingly hike far over land in them. According to his girl friends comments, Randy may have been searching the banks for a log or wading along the shore and slipped under. Waders fill and act like bricks holding you down.

        Even the most experienced fishermen know how tricky it is to wade with the current rather than across, and know the bottom topography of the rivers they wade, because your life depends on it.

        Anyone who recognizes me as 42 knows I’ve been active on the blogs for 2-3 years and am a stickler for logical thought and reasoning through the facts. That said, I’ve had 3 realistic, troubling dreams where I could see a body caught in underbrush beneath a river bank. Very realistic dreams and highly unusual for me. I don’t put much stock in a dream, especially since professional divers have searched the banks. It’s troubling; and like everyone here I hope Randy is found high and dry, still alive. God love the professional SAR and regular folks who have searched.

  26. Perhaps Bandelier was Randy’s home of Brown as some have suggested and where Frijoles canyon meets the Rio Grande is the Below the home of Brown. Frijoles canyon may have also been the no paddle up your creek except heavy loads and water high being the falls but with no intention of going up Frijoles canyon it only marking the exact spot on the Rio Grande that is both the put in spot and the treasure chest location. I think his girlfriend had said that he had said that the chest has to be on this river meaning the Rio Grande. On an earlier search, say Randy found nothing and left but decided later that he was right after all and that the chest is not around the area on land where Frijoles meets the Rio Grande but is right there in the water sunk at that spot. So, he goes back using a raft this time and taking the waders. The pictures of the spot where Frijoles meets the Rio Grande is showing where he believed the chest to be and is the only reason he climbed up a little ways so he could get a good picture. Perhaps he overshot the spot as again some have suggested and when he beached his raft walked up to his spot a little upstream from where he landed. Or he searched the spot and finding nothing decides this is not a good area to climb out of the gorge in so gets back in the raft and goes downstream a little ways to an area he thinks is more accessible on the east side.

  27. My feelings go out to all of Randy’s family and all that have known him.
    We can hope for the best.
    I have to share something that will be difficult for some to process right now.
    What happens if Randy becomes a missing person indefinitely as far as the Federal Government is concerned ?
    The answer is that this tragedy will not be recorded properly.
    Please take a look at this petition and David Paulides website Canammissing for some understanding .
    And the petition to the Department of Interior can be accessed here on his website

  28. Maybe I’m just imagining things but by saving the aerial photos and zooming in on them I found an odd discolorisation in the last aerial photo that Cynthia took. In the pile of rocks in the center of the photo on the flats,looks like the same color as his waders laid over the end of the Rock and held down by a log or something. Maybe he fell,twisted an ankle badly and can,t crawl out.
    Hoping maybe he heard the air rescue and was trying to signal someone.
    Might be nothing but can someone check it out. Maybe some one else can zoom in and verify. Watching and praying, God bless,Randy.

  29. Perhaps his girlfriend or someone can go to his house and get his computer and have a professional computer person open and read all of his notes he made to give us an idea of his thoughts and where he would be. Just a thought.

  30. Its sad that the officials seem to not be taking Randy’s disappearance very seriously. Very sad. I may be wrong, but have they indeed given up on the search?

    • I think you might be wrong. They had loads of people out searching all throughout the weekend. But what happens when you have no more clues.

      • Hi, I am aware we are down to Chasers just searching now. I was asking about officials. It seems Odd that they did not search his car etc. I think someone needs to look into criminal issues here too maybe with reports from others about strange contacts etc. Thanks for those responding. Just concerned about officials giving up. Seems like they gave up too quick.
        Thank You to all the searchers who are not giving up. Be safe and thank you thank you thank you. Please update us soon.

        Regards, Lou Lee

    • Lou Lee, I’m not in NM but have tried hard to keep up with all the posts relating to the search for Randy and my take on it is that the search was taken very seriously by the authorities, was pretty extensive, and many many people have been, and still are, out searching for Randy. When almost all of the realistic scenarios have been explored in depth from a regular search and rescue operation, the need for input from other sources like the Fenn treasure hunters might end up being very valuable as they may have a better understanding of where Randy might have tried to look. At some point the officials will have to decide that rescue is not likely anymore and the search would move to the recovery phase. This is exactly what has happened in the search for the 23 year old ski instructor missing for 5 days at Sugar Bowl Ski Area here in N. Calif. Very sad to have to call off a search but sometimes that is the only alternative for the authorities. Our treasure hunter searchers can continue to look for Randy but perhaps SAR has to move on to other emergencies.

  31. Ok, it’s getting close to update time.
    Lou Lee seems to think authorities are losing interest.
    I know they’ve cooperated alot, but is this true? Has CID stepped in yet?
    Donations still standing by…please update!

  32. I’m wondering when this will become a recovery? Does anyone have that info?
    Search & Rescue seems to migrate to Search & Recovery at some point. I would think the authorities step up there search again when this happens. How many days have to go by?

    Why still in mod Goofy, been 3 days now?

  33. Have they had dogs out on this? The computer idea is good but the fact you found his truck, little dog and his boat seemed like he would have to be within a certain primiter of that area. Could he have fallen in a hole or mine shaft?

    • Thanks Stephanie,

      Glad to know that I am not the only one that is frustrated with the officials or some of them anyway….Sounds like a short effort. We had a guy this summer who’s car was found at a trail head. Our tax funded searchers spent weeks looking for him. Huge effort. He was finally found but he had fallen and was injured. Fell to his death, a rock climber.
      It may be too late. A man trapped in a snow shelter lived 40+ days without food. He melted snow and ate dirt. You just never know.
      Chase Searches are the best!
      Hope to meet you someday!
      Thanks so the update there Stephanie.
      Best WIshes to all.

    • Thanks for sharing that Stephanie!
      Since Leo has recovered, can someone purchase some boots to protect his feet, they make leather padded ones, and take him back to the spot? Tell him, “Go get Randy!” And see what he does. If he heads close to the river, then search across it or dive/drag it.
      I am also wondering WHY his friend, who knew what he was doing on the 4th, and tried to reach him for 9 (!) Days, didn’t report him missing after the second or third day! Why wait 9 days?! I would be frantic knowing my friend was missing after a one day jaunt, but 9 days?
      Offer still on the table for my donation. Haven’t heard anything from anyone yet. I want it to go to the search efforts directly!
      Praying hard for all involved, and Randy.

        • CID, Criminal Investigation Dept. Missing persons cases are handed over to them, for character investigation of known friends etc. It’s usually a last ditch effort at the end of a missing persons case to ensure no foul play involved, before it’s filed as “unsolved-cold”. They go over all the evidence, search info etc. Some amazing things have turned up several weeks after a m.p. has been filed, by the C.I. Dept.
          I worked in one for several years.
          Just wondered if it was that far along, or if the NM / SF PD follow that protocol.

    • Thanks for link to Linda’s article. It bothers me that she is with holding info and only sharing what she thinks is needed to find him… FYI ALL info is important to a search, People are donating their time and money to finding Randy .

      • Hello 21ponies. After reading the article, I had wondered the same thing. When I thought about it even longer, I thought it could have meant other things. Perhaps she’s not “allowed” to give out this information (e.g. after speaking with police). Maybe she was busy or tired and would explain more at a later time. Only she knows what she meant, and we could have many guesses…mine included. This is an opinion, offered as a thought.

        • It’s not that she doesn’t want to share…it’s that she hasn’t gotten the photo of the map with the 3 Xs on it…she was only told there is one. I do know that Eugene/Gey has taken extensive photos of the car with the map on the dashboard, so I don’t know if he was able to focus enough and can see the 3 Xs or not, but it sure would be nice for those using the helicopter to have that. Linda is VERY transparent with this and wants all the information out there to help find Randy.

          A searcher emailed me with places where this “hole” could be, and I passed it onto Forrest and ChaseChat. If it was a wetsuit he bought, then there’s a good possibility he was looking for “holes” under water and also a good reason his raft was placed across and down from Frijoles rather then at Frijoles.

          Also, I still believe it’s a water issues since no waders or wetsuit was found. Which that means that he either hit a current that took him downstream or there’s a hole deep enough that he couldn’t get out. If either of these are true, then searchers really need to realize it can happen to them while searching here for Randy or out looking for the treasure.

          Be safe…

    • I agree. I was shocked when I read that. All this time and the car was just there with the info everyone wanted. Not saying it’s where he’s at, but we’d have an idea of the path he might have taken. She doesn’t have a photo of it yet, but she’s hoping to get it tomorrow.

  34. It doesn’t make sense to me that searchers are looking in the gorge. I am fairly certain that it doesn’t add up.

    Fenn has said if you were where the treasure was, you would see pinon, Jupiter, trees, sagebrush, and you would see wildlife and the mountains.

    None of which can be found in the Rio Grande Gorge. Except maybe sagebrush and some wildlife. Plus, why would he need to cross a river, there is no way Fenn who was battling cancer could do such a thing. Plus if Fenn said wait until spring, the gorge would probably be the least affected by conditions, compared to higher elevation.

    Like i said, i have a good idea of the area the treasure is, just 12,000 square miles of an area that it could be in.

  35. We are all still searching and learning about this missing person Randy. Chase family is putting a lot of energy into it, so its good for the community building. I see a lot of friendly faces I’ve never met but hope to at Fennboree in June.

    Evidence of a Ninth planet

  36. Today’s update: There were only 4 of us searchers who met in SF this morning to discuss today’s plan. Most guys had to return to work. The weather at that time was cloudy with expected precipitation, so we decided not to go out and search the muddy mesa top again. During the afternoon, the clouds cleared and 3 of them drove out there. I had to return home and did not go with them. I spoke to one of them a few mins ago and Randy was not found. Forrest has arranged a helicopter tomorrow at noon to take 3 of us to the raft site where it will park on the sandbar and allow us to search that area, which has already been thoroughly searched. We also will concentrate on the river in that specific area, but none of us are trained to search in water so will not be scuba diving. By air we will fly low over the river and search its banks and shoreline, plus the mesa tops on both east and west sides.

  37. The feelings felt within myself today were unexpected. They were unexpected because I didn’t know Randy on a personal level. We met in Santa Fe during the Leon Gaspard book signing. It was a brief meeting, not much more than quick introduction. Being a fellow searcher brings the feeling of family amongst us “Fenners.”
    Randy’s disappearance has carried weight which I felt overloaded with today. I was feeling like we (more I) had not given enough effort in trying to reach the area where Leo was found next to Randy’s little raft. Then the thoughts of the mud we were driving through came back to mind. The roads in the area are so bad that I felt we shouldn’t go any further fearing we would have to send out a call for help to get out the muck. At one point, Mike D made note that he had his display saying he had 90 miles left until he was out of gas. About a mile of mud later his display said he had 80 miles left until empty. Yup, we spun our wheels 10 miles worth to travel a single mile. Small hill’s became enormous obstacles. We both had our vehicles facing about 60 degrees off of the direction of travel because of terrible muddy ruts down some of the path before us. Who knows when these roads will become more passable.
    I didn’t join the search today. The whole day I felt bad for anyone searching for Randy. The winds were relentless and frigid in the area. I’m sure the searchers are red in the nose from all the tissue used to control the running nasal drips.
    My heart goes out to everyone involved in the search for Randy. I’m sure the high winds kept the drones grounded… I have not heard the updates of such grounding yet though.
    After sharing my thoughts with my wife and you, my fellow searchers, I feel that anyone involved in searching for Randy are, in fact, giving it their all. Some of us Treasure hunters involved in the search are painters, plumbers, sailors, project managers, semi coductor workers, collectors, pilots, custodians, a Commodore of Water Preservation, prayer givers, disabled men, women who take care of their man, many many more and yes, even pond scum whom are tough as nails and don’t come anything close being a scummy scallywag (I got your back DaisyMae, you’re alright in my book). All giving all.
    Just heard on the local news that Forrest is chartering a helicopter to help in the search for Randy over the next two days. Yay! Thanks f. I can not picture f not doing the things he was attributed to do in this life. You are the most upstanding citizen I have ever met, f. Stay safe everyone. Pactice Safety first so that you can accomplish your desires.

  38. RE: Helicopter/river bank searchers – TAKE long poles to poke in the brush from a safe distance away from water.

    Telescoping aluminum window washing poles from Home Depot cost only $9.00 and telescope from 6 foot to 12 or 18 feet. Light weight and will fit in helicopter. I will send a check to reimburse the purchaser. Be safe!!!

  39. Slurbs, thank you for being there & for sharing your experience with us. Admire you all so much for your dedication to finding answers about what has happened to Randy. There is definitely a feeling of kinship for fellow searchers. Will continue to pray for everyone’s safety & a miracle conclusion!

  40. I received this early morning email from Kathryn Hannon. She works at the SF opera and her husband Aaron works in the movies. They are everywhere looking under and behind things.

    Aaron and I ran into John Brown and Eugene on the way out, and we all drove to the eastern rim across from Frijoles canyon (and a little south). We hiked to where it gets technical, and I had to turn back. I stayed up high in view of the river while John and Aaron hiked down to near where the raft was.
    John’s main goal was to try to spot the waders somewhere. They skirted the bend in the river, I looked from high with binoculars and could see the sandbar the copter landed on, and Eugene drove his ATV up top along the rim.

    I wish I had stronger binoculars.. I could see the lower falls really well, but not close enough.

    My feeling is that he is either in the river, or he tried to cross there and climb out Frijoles canyon. The dog could have made the hike up the east side, so the only thing that makes sense to me is that Randy got in the water and the dog could not follow.

    The west side of the river is choked with salt cedar, so maybe with the current and that little boat, he was not able to land on the west side as he might have wanted to.

    I hope that is helpful in some way.
    I know that we were standing in probably the exact same spot as Randy was, looking across to the frijoles river delta.

    Good luck today, and stay safe. k

    • Thank you for your help, Kathryn. I believe your email will be of great help for the searchers today. I wish to thank you and the gentlemen for your search. There are many for whom we are unaware of that are helping. To those of you, I thank you.

    • Thank you for the update, forrest. And thank you for this wonderful chase family you have created. It’s comforting to know your involved. Thoughts and prayers to all! 🙂

  41. Stephanie posted on “The Next Steps” in regards to the “X’s” on Randy’s map. According to Linda, the first “X” is where the raft was found. With this information, it appears he had all intentions of landing there.

    • I wish we knew where the other two “X’s” were placed. It may help to know which direction he may have been thinking. Are the “X’s” across the river from the first? North? South?

  42. Thank you Forrest, Slurbs, Daisy May,Cynthia,Sacha,Kathryn,Aaron,John Brown, Eugene and all the people searching. Your giving love and determination are Appreciated more than you could know. For those of us in far away states we continue to send our prayers that Randy will be found.
    A heartfelt Thank You to All involved.

  43. The pictures that some are looking at are they the ones at the top of this thread? The ones at the top seem to distant to make any detail out. Are there others?


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