A life vest presumed to belong to a boy reported missing on the Skagit River near Marblemount was found Thursday during the second day of searching, but authorities continued into the evening looking for 10-year-old Sage Adams.
He was last seen Tuesday on the kayak, which was found farther downstream Wednesday on a river bank.
Sage and his father, who are from Chehalis, were camping in the area near milepost 119 when the two took their kayaks out on the river Tuesday evening, Skagit County Undersheriff Chad Clark said.
About 6 p.m., as they approached an area of rapids, the father fell out of his kayak and had to swim to shore, Clark said.
He last saw his son, wearing the life vest, as his kayak headed downstream, Clark said. It was unknown if the vest was zipped.
The father, whose own life vest was lost after he capsized, swam to the east side of the river. Unable to cross back to the west at that point, he had to camp overnight.
On Wednesday morning, the man managed to cross the river and made it to the highway, where he flagged down a motorist who took him back to the campsite. He then drove to Marblemount to call for help, Clark said.
The search for Sage began about 10:40 a.m. Wednesday, with the son’s kayak being found on the river’s east side about a half-mile north of the Marblemount bridge.
A search by dogs on Wednesday evening hit on a suspected human scent but did not find the boy, Clark said.
The child’s life vest was found Thursday morning on the west side and upstream from the kayak, he said.
Also on Thursday, Seattle City Light, which operates three dams north of where Sage’s kayak was found, reduced its outflow, lowering the river level to assist with the search.
Search and rescue teams from Skagit, Snohomish and Pierce counties are assisting in the search, as is the National Park Service, the Navy and Customs and Border Patrol.
The Sheriff’s Office has also been deploying its aerial drone units to assist in the search, Clark said.