Chaffee County Search and Rescue North, with assistance from CCSAR-South, REACH air medical services and Western Mountain Rescue, continued their search Wednesday morning for a missing Nathrop hiker in the area around the Three Apostles in the Collegiate Peaks Wilderness Area.
CCSAR-N was dispatched Saturday to search for Terry Pann, 60, who was believed to have been hiking alone in the vicinity of the Three Apostles, having taken off from the Lake Ann trailhead near the ghost town of Winfield.
Search and Rescue fielded a Hasty team to the area Saturday afternoon up the Three Apostles Basin trail, but the ground search was called off for the day after due to poor weather conditions and “very low cloud cover” that only allowed the team to get just above treeline before visibility deteriorated, said CCSAR-N public information officer Beth Helmke. Those conditions have persisted each day since as monsoonal moisture flows over the region.
The Three Apostles (North Apostle, West Apostle and Ice Mountain) are considered to be some of the more technically challenging thirteeners in the area and are nearby the fourteeners Mount Huron, Mount Belford and Mount Oxford. Ice Mountain, the highest of the group, is 49 feet shy of being a fourteener itself.
“The Apostles are definitely a next level of technicality and exposure from the other hikes in that vicinity,” Helmke said.
On Sunday, the search resumed with CCSAR-N fielding 14 members.
“We had five ground teams searching up the Three Apostles Trail, the base of North Apostle, the ridgeline up to the summit on Ice Mountain and the base of West Apostle, so basically the entirety of the northern side of the continental divide area there in the Apostles Basin,” Helmke said.
“We’re narrowing in on the area where we believe he was most likely last to have been, which is the vicinity of Ice Mountain ridgeline and summit, which is a pretty technical area with some pretty steep cliff bands,” she said.
CCSAR-S assisted with its drone, REACH assisted with helicopter flyovers, and Western Mountain Rescue, based out of Gunnison, searched on the southern side of the Continental Divide.
“They headed up an area called Waterloo Gulch to look from that side,” Helmke said.
On Monday, drone teams hiked back to the ridge of Ice Mountain to continue the search.
The rainy weather “has been a big challenge the past few days,” she said. “We’ve had limited weather windows with that cloud cover and the rain forecast.
“We do intend to continue with those ground and aerial searches through the next few days,” she said.
If you have information that may be of help in the search, such as having seen Pann on the trail, contact the Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office’s non-emergency dispatch line at 719-539-2596 .