Search for Grand Canyon Raft Rider Has Tragic End

Thomas Robison disappeared on journey with dog on a homemade raft
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 25, 2024 7:33 AM CDT
Updated May 14, 2024 6:03 PM CDT
Man, Dog Vanish in Grand Canyon, Possibly on DIY Raft
Photo of a raft that Robison apparently made.   (NPS)
UPDATE May 14, 2024 6:03 PM CDT

The search for a man believed to have tried to navigate the Grand Canyon with his dog in a homemade raft has come to a tragic end. In a news release, the National Park Service said a body believed to be that of 58-year-old New Mexico man Thomas Lee Robison was recovered from the Colorado River on Friday. The NPS asked for the public's help in finding the Santa Fe resident last month. The death is being investigated by the Coconino County Medical Examiner as well as the NPS, Fox News reports. The NPS didn't say whether Robison's dog, an 11-year-old Welsh corgi, had been found.

Apr 25, 2024 7:33 AM CDT

National Park Service officials are asking for the public's help in tracking down a man and his dog who they say may have tried to navigate the Grand Canyon in a homemade raft. KLAS reports that a 2001 Toyota Tacoma belonging to 58-year-old Thomas Lee Robison was found at Lees Ferry on Sunday, but Robison and his pet Welsh corgi were nowhere to be found. The man from Santa Fe, New Mexico, "is believed to have attempted to travel down the Colorado River with his small dog on a wooden raft," the NPS says in a release.

The NPS memo shows a photo of the supposed raft, which NBC News describes as "three wooden boards crudely held together, as well as a paddle and a life vest." Park officials say Robison is about 5 foot 10 and 160 pounds, with hazel eyes and brown hair. The dog is described as being 11 years old and weighing around 25 pounds. The NPS says an investigation is underway and asks anyone with information on Robison to call Grand Canyon officials at 928-638-7805. (More Grand Canyon stories.)

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