Search reveals no sign of missing Snowmass man | AspenTimes.com

Search reveals no sign of missing Snowmass man

Aspen Times staff report
Aspen, CO Colorado

Courtesy Aspen Police DepartmentA photo, from a video taken on a RFTA bus, shows George Aldrich (facing camera) coming down the aisle. He has been missing for a week; the video footage and other information spurred another search on Saturday.

ASPEN – A search spanning from Aspen to the lower end of Snowmass Canyon on Saturday turned up no sign of a Snowmass Village man who has been missing for a week.

The Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office closed down Highway 82 in both directions in the canyon for slightly more than an hour to facilitate the search for George Aldrich. Traffic was diverted onto Lower River Road.

The search, by several law enforcement agencies in the upper Roaring Fork Valley, as well as Mountain Rescue Aspen, proved fruitless, according a press release issued Saturday afternoon by the Aspen Police Department.

A videotape on a Roaring Fork Transportation Authority bus showed Aldrich, 28, boarding the 11:15 p.m. bus at Rubey Park bus station in downtown Aspen on Saturday, Nov. 27. He had been at Eric’s Bar with friends earlier in the evening, according to police. He exited the bus at the Truscott stop on the outskirts of Aspen.

Investigators have learned Aldrich had a conversation with another bus passenger that suggested he was confused about where he was, according to the press release. Upon learning he was at the Truscott stop, he told the other passenger that he would have to hitchhike, police said.

Based on that conversation and other information, Saturday’s search fanned downvalley from that point on the highway. Crews searched along the highway for about 10 miles to the Old Snowmass intersection. Searchers were also following up on reports that a pedestrian was walking along Highway 82 in the early morning hours of Sunday, Nov. 28, according to police. A sheriff’s deputy had responded to investigate that report, but was unable to locate anyone.

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Aldrich was reported missing on the morning of Nov. 29, when Snowmass Village police received a report that he failed to show up for work. Aldrich moved to Snowmass in early November and had secured a job with the Aspen Skiing Co.

Police have posted the video of Aldrich boarding the bus on YouTube – go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DHMwkykJ568 to view it.

Anyone with information that could aid in the investigation is asked to call 970-315-2103.