05/17/2014 04:01 EDT | Updated 07/18/2014 05:59 EDT

Slocan Lake Canoe Accident: Search Continues For 3 Missing Boaters

Carolyn Dunn/CBC News
NEW DENVER, B.C. - Search crews continue to sweep a lake in B.C.'s West Kootenay region for three canoeists who are feared dead after a canoeing accident last weekend that left a fourth person dead.

RCMP say the search of Slocan Lake is now a "recovery operation."

Police say sonar and underwater remote vehicles are being used to try to locate 15-year-old Jule Wiltshire-Padfield, 19-year-old Skye Donnet and 21-year-old Hayden Kyle.

Officers say search organizations, an RCMP dive team and the Slocan Lake Fire Department are all involved in the search for their bodies.

Sgt. Darryl Little says the underwater terrain is proving to be challenging for the searchers, as there are a number of large boulders and deep chasms which could prevent a body from being discovered.

The fourth person in the canoe, 19-year-old Lily Harmer-Taylor, was found soon after the four were dumped out of their canoe in Bigelow Bay off New Denver last Saturday.

Little says the nearly week-long search has been very difficult for families waiting for news.

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