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S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford’s office has confirmed that he is hiking the Appalachian Trail, answering a riddle that made national headlines earlier today after a State Senator questioned why the governor was out of contact with both his office and his security detail for a period of more than four days.

The following statement was just sent out by Sanford’s press office:

I wanted to pass along the following update regarding the governor’s location.

The governor is hiking along the Appalachian Trail. I apologize for taking so long to send this update, and was waiting to see if a more definitive idea of what part of the Trail he was on before we did so.

I want to emphasize that this isn’t something that either staff or Mrs. Sanford is concerned about. As we said earlier today, it isn’t unusual for the governor to be out of pocket for several days after the legislative session. We knew he would be difficult to reach, and that he would be checking in infrequently. Given the media attention this has generated, we’ll obviously update you once we have some more specifics to pass along.

And the mystery is solved.

We had received information earlier today that Sanford was on a hunting and fishing trip with several of his friends, although we were unable to independently confirm the location provided by one of our sources.

Hunting is permitted along most of the Appalachian Trail, which also features dozens of excellent fishing spots along its 2,178 mile route.