No sign of missing hiker in Gorge after weekend search

Annie Schmidt was last seen on October 16

Annie Schmidt in an undated photo provided by her family, October 22, 2016
Annie Schmidt in an undated photo provided by her family, October 22, 2016

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The search for a missing hiker in the Columbia River Gorge was suspended Sunday night after crews spent the weekend looking over 150 miles of trails.

Search crews won’t be called back unless a credible lead is established, Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office said.

Annie Schmidt was last seen on October 16. She was reported missing on October 19, and her car was found off exit 40 on Interstate 84 near the Bonneville Dam in the Columbia River Gorge.

Police are searching for 21-year-old Anna Schmidt whose car was found Thursday near the Bonneville Dam. (PPB)
Police are searching for 21-year-old Anna Schmidt whose car was found Thursday near the Bonneville Dam. (PPB)

Annie Snyder, Schmidt’s roommate, told KOIN 6 News Schmidt probably doesn’t have any camping gear with her.

Snyder said she’s been thinking about the very last conversation she had with the missing 21-year-old hiker over and over again.

“She didn’t say anything. She wasn’t like ‘I’m going hiking today.’ She didn’t say anything like that. She just said, ‘Do you want to hang out?’ I said I couldn’t,” the roommate said.

It has been a week since Snyder last saw Schmidt. The massive search around the Columbia River Gorge is coming to a critical point.

“There’s always a chance that someone can survive,” said Lt. Chad Gaidos with the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office.

Gaidos said the last ping from Schmidt’s cellphone came near the Toothrock Trailhead. On Sunday, the search resumed.

Police are searching for 21-year-old Anna Schmidt whose car was found Thursday near the Bonneville Dam. (PPB)
Police are searching for 21-year-old Anna Schmidt whose car was found Thursday near the Bonneville Dam. (PPB)

“It’s going over trails, over and over again. It’s looking for areas where someone may have gone off trail. What leads us to a person is often those small clues. It’s looking for minutia,” Gaidos said.

According to Snyder, Schmidt recently bought a tent to get ready for a camping trip she was going to go on with her mother, Michelle Schmidt this past week. But Snyder said the tent wasn’t shipped yet.

The missing hiker was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ Latter Day Saints in Lake Oswego. That church has been leading the volunteer search efforts.

Bishop Terry Clark said she knew the missing hiker well.

“It was a shock. It still is,” Clark said.

Clark said the church has had more than 300 volunteers hike across the Gorge in the last 3 days.

This is the final text message Annie Snyder got from her roommate. October 23, 2016, (Courtesy: Annie Snyder)
This is the final text message Annie Snyder got from her roommate. October 23, 2016, (Courtesy: Annie Snyder)

“We just walked up the creeks. We’re going chest deep. Wading, walking, looking to see if she’s fallen in the creek, trapped under a rock or wedged behind a log,” said Clark.

Snyder said she keeps looking at the final text she got from her missing roommate. The last moment of seeing her face is something Snyder can’t stop replaying in her mind.

“She was very important to me. She’s a wonderful roommate, just a wonderful person. I really feel for her family. Annie is one of those people that has a lot of close friends, a lot of people that love her,” Snyder said.