Searchers have ramped up rescue efforts for two hikers missing for four days as the temperature drops in Victoria’s alpine region.
The man and woman have spent three nights in frosty conditions, with the temperature dropping to five degrees Celsius on Monday morning.
Officers on horseback, a police helicopter and ground searchers are hunting for experienced hikers Trevor Salvado, 60, and Jacinda Bohan, 58 who disappeared around Mount Buffalo on Friday.
The Melbourne couple were due to meet friends for an annual long weekend getaway and were last seen at a caravan park in Bright in their Skoda car on Friday.
The husband and wife were due to return from a bushwalk at Reservoir Track, on Mount Buffalo, around midday but did not make it back. Their car has since been found abandoned.
Victoria Police Inspector Kerrie Hicks said the pair had been hiking earlier last week.
“They are really fit, strong hikers and well-experienced at hiking in the area,” she said.
“We’re really hopeful about a positive outcome,” she said.
Barrie Moore, a friend of the missing pair, said their disappearance was “out of character”.
“Trevor has been up here quite a bit, paragliding … they would know the area,” Mr Moore told the Nine Network.
A friend of the couple, Mario De Vuono, said they did “like to get out and adventure into the tracks”.
“They are usually very well-prepared when they go out. It is very out-of-character for them not to return. We are hopeful for a good outcome,” he told Nine.
Mr Salvado, a retired pilot, has short grey hair, blue eyes, grey moustache, a fair complexion, stands about 183cm tall and has a medium build.
Ms Bohan, a former teacher, is about 170 cm tall, with a thin build, light brown/blonde short hair, blue eyes and a fair complexion.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Wangaratta Police Station on 03 5723 0848.