Search underway for missing snowmobiler in Whiteshell Provincial Park

A search is underway for a missing snowmobiler in Whiteshell Provincial Park after the 50-year-old rider set out Sunday evening and did not return.

RCMP say the man left on his snowmobile at around 5:30, and police were notified about six hours later when the man did not return as expected. 

Police say a plane had been sent to the area, and RCMP search and rescue teams along with the fire commission’s office continue to look for the man.

Family has told CBC the missing man is Dan LeMay from Grunthal, Man. It’s believed LeMay ran out of gas somewhere on the trail between Pinewood Lodge on Dorothy Lake and the town of Rennie, Man., a stretch of nearly 40 kilometres.

Rennie is about 114 kilometres east of Winnipeg.

Members of LeMay’s family are in the Whiteshell searching for the father of three. Many volunteers were also out combing the area Monday.

Dan LeMay left the Pinewood Lodge in Whiteshell Provincial Park on his snowmobile Sunday evening, and has not been seen since. (Facebook)

“All the trails along there have been checked earlier today and there’s no sign of him,” said Yvonne Rideout, executive director of Snoman, a non-profit snowmobile recreation group.

“So we’re just hoping for the best right now, that he is found somewhere. I’m glad it’s not the temperatures we had last weekend, that would have been dire indeed.”

Temperatures overnight Sunday dipped down to about –10 C.

Warming shelters closed

Rideout said several snowmobile clubs in the area had dozens of people out looking for the man on Monday.

“So far there hasn’t been anything found,” she said.

“It’s very scary when you have someone that goes missing and they are by themselves.

“Right now with COVID-19 all of our shelters are closed, so if you made to a shelter they’re all locked up so you can’t even get in there,” she said.

Rideout said there are many remote trails in the Whiteshell and it could be easy to become disoriented if not familiar with the area.

“We’re hoping that he stays by his snowmobile. He’ll be easier to spot if he didn’t wander off somewhere,” she said.