Weather hampers search for boarders
Aspen, CO Colorado
CREEDE, Colo. ” Searchers braved a winter storm on Wednesday to hunt for two snowboarders who disappeared in the southwest Colorado mountains last weekend, but the weather kept two helicopters grounded.
“The weather is horrible,” Mineral County sheriff’s spokeswoman Sandy Kroll said. “You can’t see, it’s snowing, the wind is blowing.”
Bad weather has repeatedly hampered the search for Michael George and Kyle Kerschen, both from Albuquerque, who were last seen on Saturday near the Wolf Creek ski resort about 170 miles southwest of Denver.
More than 4 feet of snow fell in the area during a weekend storm.
Searchers were out on skis, snowshoes and snowmobiles on Wednesday, but Kroll said she did not now how many.
Although the forecast called for lighter snow as the day went on, Kroll said it was still heavy in higher elevations by afternoon.
Even on Tuesday, when skies cleared and the helicopters were able to fly, searchers found no trace of the missing men.
“It’s not looking good,” said Laura George, Michael George’s mother. “They can’t seem to find any sign of them right now,” she said Tuesday.
She said the men, both 27, were unprepared for cold nights in the open and probably didn’t have much food or water.
Temperatures hovered around 10 degrees in the search area early Wednesday and were not expected to get much higher than the low 20s, National Weather Service meteorologist Mike Chamberlain said.
The weekend storm left up to 10,000 customers without power in La Plata County, about 220 miles southwest of Denver. Electricity had been restored to all but a few on Wednesday, La Plata Electric Association spokeswoman Indiana Reed said.
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State department of transportation crews are well on their way to clearing Highway 82 to Independence Pass, which should open on schedule May 27 at noon.