Climber reported missing near Pyramid Peak in Maroon Bells Wilderness

By Real Aspen
Real AspenJune 23, 2013
A climber was reported missing Sunday afternoon near Pyramid Peak in the Maroon Bells Wilderness Area near Aspen, according to the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office.

A climbing companion activated a Spot Personal Tracker at approximately 2 p.m., when two climbers became separated from a third experienced climber while descending from Thunder Pyramid Peak. Search operations immediately went into effect.

Here's the full release from the Pitkin County Sheriff's Office:

On Sunday afternoon, June 23, 2013 at 1:56 P.M. the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office received notification that a Spot Personal Tracker had been activated on the 14,000 feet Pyramid Peak, which is approximately 10 miles west of Aspen, Colorado in the Maroon Bells Wilderness Area in the White River National Forest.

Pyramid Peak

A Spot Tracker is a personal emergency locate transmitter which can be activated when the possessor of the device needs assistance. This Spot Tracker had been activated by a climber who could not locate one of his climbing partners after a party of three climbers had summited the Thunder Pyramid Peak route earlier in the morning.

As the party was descending the trail, roughly as they began a climb down into Shoemaker Basin, two of the party became separated from one. The one individual had proceeded away from the other two and was out of visual contact and off the trail.

The climbers, all from the front range of Colorado, had climbed Cathedral Peak on Friday, June 21, Hagerman Peak on Saturday, June 22 and then Thunder Pyramid Peak this morning. After an hour long search at the place last seen along the trail, Britt Jones of Monument, Co. activated his Spot locator.

The situation was transmitted to the Aspen Pitkin County Communications Center and a search and rescue was initiated by Mountain Rescue Aspen. 14 members of MRA responded along with 5 members of the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office.

DBS Helicopters from Rifle Colorado flew members of MRA on the search mission which is ongoing. The missing climber is from Pueblo, Co.

The third climber, Jim Yaiche, is from the Denver metro area. All three are described as “very accomplished” climbers. Updates will be available as things change or tomorrow, June 24, at 10:00 A.M.

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