Valemount RCMP received a call of a small Ultralight plane with one occupant spiraling into the east end of Moose Lake in Mount Robson Provincial Park.
The caller advised that the aircraft was flying east bound approximately 200 feet above the water. For an unknown reason, the aircraft suddenly went into a downward spiral, crashing into the lake approximately 200 meters from shore. Moments later, the aircraft sunk with no signs of the pilot.
Up to now, all efforts to locate the pilot and the aircraft he was flying have been unsuccessful. Those efforts include:
– A search was conducted by Search & Rescue personnel, the Jasper National Parks Warden Service and RCMP.
– RCMP divers attended the lake and dove to 130 feet without success. In addition, an underwater camera was used in the search. Moose Lake is extremely cold, about 250 to 275 feet deep, with no visibility below 60 feet.
– A Search & Rescue Specialist from the Okanagan was brought in by the Valemount Detachment. The specialist utilized side scan sonar without successfully locating the aircraft.
The Valemount Detachment has now contracted an independent commercial diving company from the lower mainland to attend Moose Lake to continue the search for the missing pilot and his aircraft. The contractor is better equipped to search in these conditions and to greater depths.
The pilot is a 57 year old male from Hinton, Alberta. His name is not being released at this time.
The search and investigation continue.