Missing Colorado Hiker Found Dead at Horsetooth Mountain Park

by Taylor Cunningham

A hiker who was reported missing in Colorado’s Horsetooth Mountain park on Saturday has been found dead.

According to a press release from the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office, a group of hikers reported an adult man missing around 6:45 on Sept. 17. The group claimed that they had unintentionally separated from him after they became lost.

Deputies from the Sheriff’s office immediately joined rangers from the Larimer County Department of Natural Resources, members of the local Seach and Rescue team, UCHealth medical crews, and other emergency service workers and canvassed the area. Sometime after midnight, they paused the search until daylight.

The team resumed their search around 7 a.m. on Sunday morning. Around 12:25 that afternoon, they located the man under a rock ledge. The release noted that the body was recovered, and officials are investigating the matter as an unattended death.

The coroner’s office has not released the hiker’s identity and cause of death.

Hiker Falls to Her Death After Climbing Colorado Mountain

The tragic news follows a string of deaths in Colorado parks. This month, two other hikers lost their lives while attempting to traverse mountain trails.

On September 3, the first victim was attempting a solo climb on Capitol Peak in the Elk Mountains when she lost her footing and plunged 900 feet. A group of hikers witnessed the incident and called 911. EMS rushed to the scene by helicopter. But by the time they reached her, she had already died.

“The Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office and Mountain Rescue Aspen would like to remind backcountry enthusiasts that the Elk Mountains are treacherous. And that the loose, rotting terrain can lead to unstable conditions that can cause serious injuries or death,” the office wrote in a press release following the incident.

Officials have not released the victim’s name as of yet.

Only four days later, on September 7, another hiker died while summiting Blanca Peak in the Sangre de Cristo mountain range. Justin Seagren, who had been traveling the US National Parks for over a year, lost his life when he fell approximately 300 feet.

The peak is the fourth highest in the state. And due to its rugged terrain, it took the Alamosa Volunteer Search and Rescue team ( AVSAR ) over a day to reach his body.

“AVSAR would like to extend their most sincere condolences to everyone who loved and knew Justin,” the organization wrote in a release. “We cannot thank the reporting parties enough who stayed on scene for several hours after the accident, triggered their SOS immediately, and assisted the helicopter in locating him.”