Aspen rescuers use helicopter to retrieve hiker’s body
September 14, 2011
ASPEN – Aspen rescuers on Wednesday retrieved the body of David Morano of Dillon, who died Saturday in a fall while climbing in the Pyramid Peak area southwest of Aspen.
A two-person Aspen Mountain Rescue team boarded a helicopter at the Aspen airport at about 8:15 a.m. and flew to the area where Morano, 41, fell to his death in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness area. The helicopter, provided by DBS helicopter services, was positioned about 50 feet above the body, near Thunder Pyramid Peak, and the Mountain Rescue members were able to retrieve the body using a 150-foot cable, according to the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office.
The helicopter then flew to a landing zone at T Lazy Seven Ranch on Maroon Creek Road. The operation was finished by about 9:30 a.m.
Morano, an experienced mountaineer, was climbing with a companion with the goal of reaching the summit of at least two peaks when he fell 200 to 300 feet from a ridge. The difficult location of his body delayed its recovery. Authorities said they needed a different chopper and a longer cable than what is typically required for a rescue operation.
See Thursday’s Aspen Times for more on Wednesday’s operation.