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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, July 25, 2003

Scent offers new hope in missing-hiker search

By Kawehi Haug
Advertiser Staff Writer

Rescue crews will extend the search at least one more day for missing hiker Daniel Levey, after a trained dog picked up a scent in the area, officials said.

A rescue dog with the state Department of Land and Natural Resources picked up a scent where Wai'oma'o Trail meets the ridge of Ka'au Crater, said Mary Aragones, Honolulu Police Department missing persons investigator. That may lead to more clues on finding Levey, she said.

"We'll follow the scent until the dog loses it or we find something that will tell us where to go from there," Aragones said.

Rescue teams yesterday focused their search on Ka'au Crater and the trails in and around that section of the Ko'olau Ridge.

Members of the fire department and the land department, as well as volunteers from the Hawaiian Trail and Mountain Club, combed the area for clues. Helicopters dropped searchers into the deepest part of the crater but didn't find anything that would indicate that he had fallen, Aragones said.

Levey began his hike Monday afternoon at the Mau'umae Trail above Maunalani Heights.

Searchers were optimistic about Levey's chances of being alive.

"You can survive in the mountains for a long time," said Mabel Kekina of the Hawaiian Trail and Mountain Club. "If you're resourceful, you can make it."

And Levey has a reputation for being a survivor, a friend said.

"Daniel loves a good challenge," said Eric Lam, one of Levey's high-school buddies. "He's smart and creative and I'm expecting him to show up any time now."