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Missing Mingus Mountain hiker found dead with dog by his side

Donald Hayes
Posted at 8:34 AM, May 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-19 11:37:23-04

PRESCOTT, Ariz. (KNXV) — A Prescott-area hiker who was last seen last week has been found dead with his faithful dog by his side.

Donald Hayes, 74, was last seen Friday morning along Mingus Mountain's Woodchute trailhead, Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday.

He called for help Friday afternoon after reportedly becoming lost during his hike. YCSO says Forest Patrol responded and told Hayes to stay at his location, but he continued on against their advice.

Search-and-rescue volunteers from Coconino, Maricopa, and Gila counties helped with the search.

His body was located Wednesday afternoon in a rugged, hard-to-reach area.

Ranger, his dog, remained at his side and was found alive.

YCSO says the Labrador was treated at the scene by a volunteer who was a veterinarian before going to an animal hospital.