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THE case of a missing hiker who vanished back in 2014 has had an interesting and chilling development as a wildfire unearthed a major clue.

As firefighters battled a blaze in Arizona, they ended up discovering a backpack relating to the case of a missing man named David Alford.

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David Alford (pictured) was last seen in August of 2014Credit: National Missing and Unidentified Persons System
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Arizona firefighters discovered Alford's backpack near the North Rim of the Grand CanyonCredit: National Park Service

Alford, who was 36 years old at the time, was last seen on an interstate almost 700 miles away in Boise, Idaho, per 12 News.

The firefighters found his backpack in a remote area along the northern side of the Grand Canyon.

The fire crews were reportedly trying to contain the Dragon Fire up on the Grand Canyon's North Rim, which has now spread across more than 1,300 acres, reports Newsweek.

It was confirmed to be Alford's when firefighters found his ID along with personal items inside the bag.

Alford went missing after his older sister, Analee Reseigh, dropped him off at Interstate 84 near the Broadway or Vista exit in Boise to go hitchhiking down to Arizona and possibly Mexico.

"He was a free spirit, he liked to travel, he traveled all over the world," she said.

"So, I dropped him off near the interstate because he was planning to hitchhike down south to Arizona, and then I thought he was headed to Mexico after that. He had a sign that said Arizona on one side and Utah on one side."

Nearly eight years ago in August was the last time Reseigh saw or heard from her little brother.

The family started to worry a few months after Alford left for his trip as the holidays started to come around.

"He's a spiritual person, and so I think he had planned to cut off communication, but we were all very surprised when we didn't hear from him a few months later, especially around the holidays," Reseigh explained.

Aside from the backpack discovery only weeks ago, there have been no significant leads in the investigation regarding Alford's disappearance.

However, Joelle Baird, a spokesperson for the Grand Canyon National Park would note that the backpack was located in an uncommon area for tourists.

"As work was being done to prepare containment lines around that fire, one of the fire crews preparing the road discovered a backpack in an area where visitors don't really travel; it's not a popular visitor area whatsoever," he explained.

The backpack had also been there for a very long time, 12 News reports.

Police initiated a search effort to cover as much area as possible to locate clues about what happened to Alford or where he might be.

Alford is described to be 5 feet, 8 inches tall, weighing around 140 pounds, and having blue eyes.

Reseigh also noted that Alford had a skinny build at the time he left and has a tattoo of the Capricorn astrological sign on his ankle.

He would now be 44 years old, and anyone with any information is encouraged to contact Boise State Police at 208-570-6000.

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The wildfires in Arizona have forced firefighters to block off certain areasCredit: National Park Service/M.Krupp
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