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Skeletal Remains Found in Joshua Tree National Park Believed to Be Missing Hiker

Staff members in Joshua Tree National Park say they discovered human remains off a trail in the Black Rock area of the park. A press release says the staff members found a lone backpack, leading to the remains. Officials are linking the backpack to 25-year-old Trammell Evans, a hiker missing since last year.

Park rangers began their search for Evans on May 5, 2023. They say he was last seen on April 30 of last year after being dropped off at the Black Rock Campground on the park’s north side. He planned to hike from Black Rock to Geology Tour Road and then use the California Riding and Hiking Trail to reconnect to Black Rock, but he never reappeared.

Officials were able to confirm the backpack does belong to Evans but say they are waiting on the investigators to identify the human remains.

Park officials called the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office and Coroner’s Bureau to oversee the investigation. They will investigate the cause of death. 

However, a social media account run by friends and family says the death may be related to alcohol withdrawal.

“In his final journal entry, filled with optimism but also concern regarding the symptoms of withdrawal, Tram expressed his love for everyone, reminding us that ‘love is what life is all about,’” they wrote on the account. “He sought healing through being in nature but underestimated the challenges of his condition.”

The Riverside County Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with any additional information to contact Palm Desert Sheriff Station (760) 836-1600 or call anonymously at (760) 341-STOP (7867) and reference incident # O240250071.

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