When Rob Parritt reached inside the darkened entrance to a snow-covered shelter made from pine tree branches and boughs, he wasn’t sure what he would find.

His worst fear – finding a frozen, dead body – did not materialize Tuesday evening. But what he did find proved that someone had been living in Baxter Woods, Portland’s largest forest. The 32-acre forest is located on a tract of land between the Evergreen Cemetery on Stevens Avenue and Forest Avenue.

Parritt, who is the director of the Oxford Street Shelter in Portland, found a pair of winter gloves, a frozen blanket, winter boots and a pair of men’s underwear inside the snow cave. The shelter was only large enough to accommodate one person.

Parritt, who has seen dozens of these types of makeshift shelters, said it appeared that someone had been living in the shelter up until a day or so ago.

“This person did not want to be found,” Parritt said.

Told about the shelter by a co-worker, Parritt and his team of three volunteers walked through more than 2 feet of snow Tuesday night to reach the remote spot in Baxter Woods. His team was one of five that participated in Portland’s annual Point In Time homeless survey. If they find a homeless person, teams offer the person blankets, water and a ride to a shelter.

Each January the city spends one night trying to find people living on the street or in camps, who are in need of shelter. This year’s survey, originally scheduled for Jan. 28, had to be postponed because of last week’s blizzard.

Last year, Portland found 10 unsheltered people. This year, no one was located. It’s the first time that’s happened in recent years, according to Parritt.

“We haven’t found anybody, not a solitary soul,” he said late Tuesday night after all the survey teams had returned to the Oxford Street Shelter. “It’s the weather. We’ve already checked in more than 200 people to the shelter, which is a lot.”

The survey gathers information from people who are homeless. The results, which will be released in March, are used to evaluate strategies to end homelessness. The survey is required by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which allocates funding to Portland to support housing programs that serve homeless families and individuals.

Parritt said the difference between this year’s homeless count and last year’s count has been the snow. His team had to stagger through more than 2 feet of it on its first trek Wednesday into a remote, wooded area off Brighton Avenue – near the Barron Center nursing home. When Parritt spotted a tarp covering what appeared to be a shelter made out from tree branches, he yelled out “Is anyone there?”

After getting no response, Parritt moved onto a second possible encampment with the same results. Two or three people had been living in the woods last summer, he said.

Parritt said the deep snow has discouraged people from camping this year.

“It’s a lot easier for people to come into a shelter,” he said.

Parritt is glad that his teams were unable to find unsheltered people. It means that the city’s network of shelters is doing its job. The 2014 Point In Time survey found that 497 people in Portland were identified as homeless. The 2014 survey identified 1,200 people as being homeless statewide.