Missing Marin Hiker's Body Found in Inyo National Forest

A 31-year-old San Rafael man had gone missing Sunday after a hike in the Sierra Nevada.

Authorities identified the body of a 31-year-old local man who went missing near Mount Langley in the Sierra Nevada on Sunday, officials said.

Thomas Heng of San Rafael was last seen on July 22, at 1 p.m., while on a day hike to Mount Langley. His body was identified in the Inyo National Forest, as part of search-and-rescue operations. The incident is under investigation. The time and cause of death is not known at this time.

Heng and others originally planned to hike up Mt. Langley, camp in Big Pine, Calif., and then travel 74 miles to hike White Mountain Peak, according to the itinerary he posted on a Bay Area meetup group.

On Sunday, he was last seen in an area about 13,000 feet up on the 14,023-foot Mt. Langley, said Dana Dierkes, a spokeswoman for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks.

He had been hiking with two other people earlier in the trip when they ran into some stormy weather and were separated, Dierkes said. They were hiking at different speeds and fatigue could've been another reason for the separation, she said.

Over a day had passed he was reported missing to the parks officials. Night time temperatures in Inyo and Tulare counties were between 32 and 37 degrees when he was missing, Dierkes said. His body was sent to the Inyo coroner's office for an autopsy.

His Facebook page depicts Heng as an outdoors enthusiast, who enjoyed snowboarding and scaled peaks all over California and the world, including Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Aconcagua in Argentina and eight of California's fourteener peaks (peaks that exceed 14,000 feet above sea level).

In his meetup profile, he described himself as "a very outdoorsy person" who "is never home on weekends."

A San Francisco native, Heng and his wife moved to San Rafael a few months ago.

Bay City News Service contributed to this report.


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