The Backroad Anthem frontman and his pal Chase Morland headed out on an ill-advised duck hunting expedition on Saturday (26Dec15), despite the bad weather forecast for the weekend.

Morland even joked about the trip on Twitter.com, writing: "In case we don't come back, @BackroadCRAIG and I are going right through Winter Storm Goliath to kill ducks in Oklahoma."

The post took on an eerie tone as the two men disappeared shortly after setting out on the trip in Kay County.

A boat the two men had been using was found capsized early on Monday (28Dec15), while Morland's body was recovered hours later.

However, Strickland's loved ones are continuing to pray for the singer's safe return after the 29-year-old's black Labrador, Sam, who had joined his master on the trip, was spotted on the river bank.

"Craig's dog Sam has been found," his wife Helen wrote on Twitter on Monday. "His boat has been confirmed as being capsized. They are still searching for Craig. Please keep praying."

Meanwhile, Strickland's bandmate Toby Freeman tells People.com, "Craig's dog being found alive is a very good sign. That's a piece of hope that we're actually clinging on to.

"Dog being man's best friend is a saying that's so common, but it's actually so true in this case," he says. "Sam's an older lab and for him to make it in such harsh conditions - it's just so amazing and we're clinging on to that."

Freeman continues, "Craig and his dad Randy are so close. They pretty much do everything together when he's home. They are a very faith-based family. God is their centre.

"I know Randy's clinging to hope, but his heart is just broken. It's such a gut-wrenching accident and it's so tragic. His wife Helen is struggling so much, she's just hoping and praying that they find Craig."