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UW assistant professor missing after camping near Mount Rainier

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An assistant professor in the UW’s anthropology department was reported missing Monday after camping in a remote area near Mount Rainier, his family and parks officials say.

Sam Dubal had a backcountry permit for Carbon River Camp on the Mother Mountain Loop trail about 70 miles from Seattle on the night of Oct. 9, according to National Park Service (NPS) spokesperson Kevin Bacher. Dubal’s permit said he was “expected to be out” the next day, Saturday, Oct. 10. 

The search and rescue operation began around noon Monday after the park received word that he was “overdue,” Bacher said in an email. There are 25 people involved in the search, which has had teams out Monday afternoon, overnight, and Tuesday morning. Of those 25, 19 are NPS employees and six are volunteers.

Dubal’s vehicle was found at Mowich Lake, according to Bacher. 

UW assistant professor missing after camping near Mount Rainier

Searchers have continued to look for Dubal overnight, as well with an Air Force helicopter equipped with a forward-looking infrared radar. 

His sister wrote on Twitter Monday night that Dubal was missing and described him as 5 feet, 9 inches tall, and about 160 pounds. A missing persons poster describes him as having black hair with a short black beard and could possibly be wearing a blue jacket. He is 34 years old. 

“If you are in the Ipsut Creek area, please keep a look out, or notify others, so he makes it home safe,” the UW anthropology department wrote on Twitter Monday.

Dubal is teaching ANTH 369, Special Problems In Anthropology, this quarter, according to his UW website. He joined the department as an assistant professor in June.

A tip line has been set up at 360-569-6684 for anyone who has seen Dubal on the trail in the last few days. 

Reach News Editors Ash Shah and Jake Goldstein-Street at news@dailyuw.com. Twitter: @itsashshah @GoldsteinStreet 

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