Community News

News Release: Missing Person Search Initiated on the Walhalla Plateau of North Rim

September 16, 2021

GRAND CANYON, Ariz.  –The National Park Service (NPS) is conducting a missing person search at Grand Canyon National Park.

On Tuesday, September 14 at approximately 9 p.m., the Grand Canyon Regional Communications Center received a report of an overdue backpacker in the vicinity of the Walhalla Plateau on the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park.

The backpacker, 66-year-old Clifton “Cliff” Beck of Mount Airy, Maryland was reported overdue and obtained a backcountry permit to spend two nights on the Walhalla Plateau from September 10-12. Beck was expected to exit the backcountry of Grand Canyon National Park on September 12.

On Wednesday, September 15, rangers conducted a comprehensive hasty search and performed aerial searching and were unable to locate Beck. Today’s operations include deployment of nine ground search teams as well as aerial searches via helicopter and fixed wing aircraft in the Walhalla Plateau area. 

Beck is described as 5’10” tall, 160 pounds, balding, with a gray beard. He is believed to be travelling alone, carrying a backpack and wearing hiking boots. 

In addition to the search and rescue operation, the NPS is also conducting a missing persons investigation. Any individual with information on the location of Clifton Beck should call or text the NPS Investigative Services Branch Tipline at 888-653-0009, fill out the online form at, or email