NPS searching for missing hikers in Alaska's Wrangell-St. Elias National Park

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The National Park Service is looking for two hikers who did not meet a scheduled air taxi pickup within Alaska’s Wrangell-St. Elias National Park.

The hikers, a couple from Missouri, on Tuesday and Wednesday also failed to make two pre-planned satellite phone calls to their air taxi operator.

Gulkana-based Copper Valley Air Service on June 22 dropped the hikers at Sanford Glacier airstrip.

They planned a six-day backpacking trip east of Mount Drum across Dadina (da-DEYE-nah) Plateau. They were scheduled to be picked up Wednesday morning at the Dadina River.

Their pilot searched Wednesday and called the park service.

The agency says that by 6 p.m. Thursday, 27 agency personnel and five aircraft were searching.

Three crews were flown to locations along the hikers’ route to search on the ground.

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