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Report: Missing tourist in Iceland joins search for herself

A missing tour bus passenger in remote southern Iceland ended up joining her own search party last weekend without realizing the search teams were in fact looking for her, according to a report.

According to the Iceland Review, which cited the website (site in Icelandic), a bus driver in the volcanic canyon Eldgjá reported a foreign tourist missing on Saturday after she failed to return to her tour bus.

The driver had waited an hour before contacting local search and rescue teams to look for the woman, the Review said.

But the report said the search was called off early Sunday morning after it was discovered the woman believed to be missing had been on the bus all along -- and had even participated in the search for herself.

Other passengers had not recognized the woman because she had changed her clothes and cleaned up after the stop in Eldgjá before reentering the bus, reports said.

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Around 50 people participated in the search in vehicles and by foot, the Review said.

The name of the passenger was not immediately available.

Eldgjá is approximately 150 miles east of the capital Reykjavik.

The Iceland Review quoted Sveinn K. Rúnarsson, the chief of police in Hvolsvöllur as telling that the woman was not at fault because the bus passengers had simply not been counted correctly.

The tourist apparently did not recognize the description of herself during the ill-fated search and “had no idea that she was missing,” Rúnarsson was quoted as saying.

According to The Reykjavik Grapevine, the woman was described as "Asian, about 160 cm (about 5'3"), in dark clothing and speaks English well."

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