In the late evening of August 25, 2019, AVSAR personnel received a message on their facebook requesting some advice from a very worried mother.
We were first contacted at 2248 with a message from the mother explaining that her son had missed his check in time (2100hours) and she was beginning to become alarmed. AVSAR Personnel continued a conversation with the woman gathering information about her son’s plans and tried to stress the importance of calling The Alamosa County Dispatch Center and reporting him as an overdue hiker. At 2231, dispatch was contacted and made aware of the overdue hiker. The man’s plans were to start up the trail at 0400hours on 8/25 to summit Ellingwood Point and Blanca Peak and planned to be back to his vehicle by 1400hours and be on the road to the trailhead for Wetterhorn Peak. It was unknown if he was taking the Lake Como Approach or the Zapata Approach. Once dispatch was contacted, we began action behind the scenes. We attempted to ping the overdue hiker’s phone to get a general location of where he was. We had no idea if he was still on the Blanca Massif, if he had made it to the next trailhead over 4 hours away, or if he was somewhere in between. The ping was unsuccessful due to the phone being powered off, so we moved on to the next step. At 0022hours Deputies were sent to the Zapata Falls Trailhead and the Lake Como Rd Trailhead to attempt to locate the man’s vehicle. After checking both trailheads, we were unable to locate his vehicle. At 0155hours AVSAR was contacted by the Mother saying she finally received a brief text from her son, stating that he was okay but didnt have cell service. All teams were notified that contact had been made with the overdue hiker and that he was okay.
We would like to stress to everyone out there that you do not need to be worried about contacting 911 and reporting your overdue hiker missing. If you are calling to report a hiker missing from outside our area, please call (719)589-5807.
‼Please also note, that AVSAR does not monitor their Facebook page for emergencies, if you have an emergency please call the Alamosa Dispatch Center. ‼
Thank you so much to the amazing team we have at our Alamosa County Dispatch Center and Alamosa County Sheriff’s office who work around the clock.