Lake County Sheriff Don Bell told KGVO News on Tuesday afternoon that a swimmer who jumped from the rocks at a popular spot near the SKQ Dam on the Flathead River has still not been found after several days of searching.

“On July 18th at about 5:15 pm, Lake County 911 took a report of a male who had been swept away in the Flathead River, west of Polson, after jumping from cliffs near Buffalo Rapids,” said Sheriff Bell. “This is a popular jumping spot on the river.  It was reported at this time that 21 year old, Dayton Conrad of Ronan, was with a friend and the two were jumping into the river from the cliffs.”

Bell continued.

“When Dayton jumped from the cliffs, he was unable to swim to shore and was witnessed by his friend being pulled under by the current.  The friend left the area to obtain cellular service to contact 911.  The Lake County Sheriff’s Office, Lake County Search and Rescue, Two Bear Air Rescue, CSKT Tribal Rangers and Finley Point Fire all assisted in a weekend long search for Dayton, but he has not been located.”

Bell said he and his crews searched the shoreline and no trace of Conrad had yet been found as of Monday afternoon.

In another incident, Bell said a Bigfork man was killed in a single vehicle motorcycle crash on Thursday, July 16.

“At about 9:00 p.m., it was reported to Lake County 911 that a motorcyclist had crashed after hitting a dear near Mile Marker 28 on Hwy 35,” he said. “First responders determined that the motorcyclist, who was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, had died.  The Lake County Coroner’s Office identified the deceased motorcyclist as Samuel Keirle, 26 years old, of Bigfork.  The Montana Highway Patrol is conducting the crash investigation.”


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