ELK RIVER, Idaho — The body of the missing 16-year-old Idaho teen was recovered Thursday from the middle falls at Elk Creek Falls, according to the Clearwater County Sheriff's Office.
Just before dark on Wednesday when authorities were going to suspend the search for the night, they spotted part of 16-year-old Luis Diaz's body behind the falls and began efforts to recover the body.
Diaz's body was recovered sometime Thursday.
According to a press release from the Clearwater County Sheriff's office where the body was located behind the rocks made it difficult to recover. The sheriff's office said this was one of the most technically challenging search and rescue operations in many years.
The dam at the Elk River Reservoir had been blocked Wednesday morning and the flow was almost stopped in order to be able to search for the body.
The water level had dropped to a low enough level that authorities were able to locate the body.
The Forest Service has issued a closure order for the Elk Creek Falls trail system.
The search started after a 16-year-old boy from Deary, Idaho, fell into Elk Creek Falls on Sunday.
The teen was hiking at Elk Creek Falls on Sunday when he lost his footing and fell in, according to the Clearwater County Sheriff’s Office.
Authorities say his friends saw him go into the water at about 3:23 p.m. on Sunday but soon lost sight of him as he went down the falls. He has not been seen since.
Searchers on the ground could not find the teen Sunday night. Medics flew a helicopter as part of the search, but were not able to find the teen and had to leave the area due to low fog.
Clearwater County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue searched below the lower pool of the middle falls and dove into a 23-foot deep pool. They were unable to find the teen.
Authorities said an attempt to reduce the flow in Elk River Falls on Monday would assist in the search.
The sheriff’s office is asking the public to stay out of the Elk Creek Falls area during the search.