Search for overdue Maroon Bells climber to resume Saturday
A 49-year-old Albuquerque man who set out to climb the Maroon Bells and Pyramid Peak earlier this week remained missing Friday after weather hampered search efforts, officials said.
The search for David Cook was called off Friday because of weather conditions, though officials planned to resume looking today provided the weather improves, said Deputy Alex Burchetta of the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office.
Cook, a former marine, was described as an expert mountaineer who was climbing by himself, according to a statement from the Sheriff’s Office. He planned to climb Pyramid Peak on Monday and then climb South Maroon and North Maroon Peaks on Tuesday, the statement says.
A woman called authorities Tuesday night when she hadn’t yet heard from Cook. Volunteers from Mountain Rescue Aspen located Cook’s car about noon Wednesday and found a receipt inside indicating he arrived at the Maroon Bells entrance station about 11 a.m. Monday, according to the statement.
Based on that information and the possibility that Cook’s climbing plans might have been delayed because of his late arrival, Mountain Rescue officials decided not to immediately initiate a search, according to the statement.
On Thursday morning, however, a helicopter from Grand Junction and another from Gypsum were deployed to search for Cook. High winds forced one of the helicopters to fly home, though the other was able to search the areas around North and South Maroon peaks as well as Pyramid Peak until about 4 p.m. but did not find Cook, according to the statement.
Burchetta said he planned to meet with Cook’s family Friday night. Another statement released Friday night said the search is expected to resume on Saturday, weather permitting.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
Readers around Aspen and Snowmass Village make the Aspen Times’ work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.
Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.
Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.
Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.
User Legend: Moderator Trusted User
Colorado’s new effort to prevent unemployment fraud left two-thirds of suspect accounts failing to verify ID
Colorado’s latest attempt to combat unemployment fraud had some noteworthy results in its first week.