Google Maps twist emerges after camper's Aussie outback death

Olivia Lambert
·News Editor
·4-min read

A camper found dead after going missing during a trip in central Australia was taken on an unusual route by Google Maps, police say.

Yun-Seob Shin, also known as Lynus Shin, was reported missing on Saturday after he failed to show up for work at a cafe in Alice Springs.

He had told colleagues of a plan to go camping near Boggy Hole in the Finke Gorge National Park, about 170 kilometres from Alice Springs, on Thursday and Friday.

He was last seen at the Stuart Well Roadhouse on the day he left, raising concerns when he did not show up for work on Saturday.

Police conducted an air and land search for the 37-year-old before finding his body and White Nissan X-Trail near Boggy Hole on Sunday.

Yun-Seob Shin smiles with a cockatoo perched on his shoulder.
Yun-Seob Shin was found dead after he went camping in central Australia/ Source: Facebook

Nissan X-Trail no match for Boggy Hole road

Police confirmed there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding the death and ABC reports Google Maps led Mr Shin down an unusual route to his campsite.

It is believed Mr Shin’s vehicle became bogged on his way to his destination.

“It’s an unusual route but it’s the one Google Maps identified for him to take,” Sergeant Philip Emmett told the ABC.

He added that Mr Shin’s Nissan X-Trail was not a suitable vehicle for a trip into Boggy Hole and it was a notoriously difficult track for four-wheel drives.

It is believed extreme weather may have contributed to the tragedy, with the ABC reporting Mr Shin ran out of water during his trip.

Senior Sergeant Shaun Furniss had expressed concern about the weather prior to Mr Shin being found.

A dirt road in the red centre of the Australian outback in the Northern Territory.
Police say Yun-Seob Shin was taken an unusual route by Google Maps. Source: Getty/file

“The temperatures are extreme and the terrain is challenging out there,” he said in a statement on Saturday.

Mr Shin, who had lived in Alice Springs for about a month after relocating from Victoria, went camping as temperatures hit 41.7 degrees on Friday and 43.7 on Saturday in the outback town.

According to the Bureau of Meteorology, Saturday was the hottest day in November in Alice Springs.

Outback trips should be avoided in summer, police say

With the soaring temperatures in the area, Sgt Emmett urged people wanting to camp in the remote area to speak to people with local knowledge.

“First and foremost, give the time of year very serious consideration,” he told the ABC.

"Currently, the whole of Australia is in the grips of a very serious heatwave, so I'd suggest to anyone that was thinking about doing it at this time of year, go find a pool to go sit next to.”

The latest tragedy comes a week after Northern Territory Police raced to locate a man missing in the heart of Australia’s outback for 72 hours.

Timothy Rodwell, 41, was last seen on November 22 at the Kings Canyon Resort, which is located between Uluru and Alice Springs, before walking off into the bush.

He was found safe and well on November 25 and taken to hospital for treatment of mild dehydration.

Touching tributes to Alice Spring’s Yun-Seob Shin

A friend of Mr Shin’s wrote in a tribute on Facebook he was free-spirited and had a caring heart and bright smile. The friend added he had a love for birds and nature.

Kelly Edwards, the manager of the Page 27 cafe where Mr Shin worked, will also remember him as a kind man who loved interacting with customers.

Yun-Seob Shin pours milk into a coffee while working in a cafe.
Yun-Seob Shin had lived in Alice Springs for about a month. Source: Facebook

“It was hard to believe,” she told NT News.

“We all hoped they would find him and that he was waiting to be found and holding on, to hear that it was too late is devastating.

“It will make a huge difference at the cafe.

“You know when lightness is in the room. He loved interacting with customers and the customers will never forget him.”

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