New South Wales Police will appeal to hikers in the Kosciuszko National Park to help in the search for missing Canadian Prabhdeep Srawn.
Two days after recommencing a ground search for the 25-year-old who has been missing since May 13, Monaro Local Area Command Superintendent Rod Smith said police and National Parks and Wildlife Officers were contending with some snow in the search area.
“This week we had intended to conduct more of a ground search but our advice and our own observations from going up there was that there was still the same amount of snow as there was when we searched the first time,” he said.
“We are recommencing the search in a limited capacity, using some specialist services available to us.
“We’re going to give that a go this week and then will make a weekly assessment as to when the appropriate time to go back into another thorough ground search but obviously that will be when the snow goes.”
He said SES volunteers were on standby for a broader ground search and that visitors to the area were being asked to remain vigilant.
“We believe that he walked along the Main Range Trail from Charlotte Pass, in an anti-clockwise direction towards Mt Townsend and Mt Kosciusko.
“For people who are out there, we are appealing for hikers in that area to keep an eye out.”
Superintendent Smith said no decision had been made about how long the search effort would continue for.
Family members are coordinating a group of 18 volunteers who will arrive from Canada next week to assist with the search.
“We support the family and are very conscious of the amount of resources that they have brought to the searches as well. All of that needs to be coordinated so we are not covering each other’s tracks basically,” he said.
He said police had “an open mind” to the possibility that Mr Srawn’s body may not be in the search area.
“All of the information that we’ve got, firmly point us in the direction that we have concentrated our search but of course, we are open to the fact that he may not be in that particular area which is problematic because it is such a massive, vast area.”
Mr Srawn was last seen on May 13 when he parked a rental car in the Charlotte Pass Village before setting out in fine conditions to hike near Australia's two highest peaks, Mt Kosciuszko and Mt Townsend.
His disappearance was reported a week later, prompting a large air and land search over two weeks.
The 30-person search was abandoned on June 1 ahead of heavy winter snowfall.
Mr Srawn's cousin Ruby Singh said on Monday the family was realistic about the likely outcome, but was grateful for the resources allocated by authorities.