Search called off for missing Front Range man believed to be in Steamboat Lake area | CraigDailyPress.com

Search called off for missing Front Range man believed to be in Steamboat Lake area

Eleanor C. Hasenbeck/Steamboat Pilot & Today

The sun sets over Steamboat Lake in North Routt County. A 66-year-old man from the Front Range is believed to be missing in the area after his car was found on private property near the lake.

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Authorities have called off a search in the Steamboat Lake area for a 66-year-old man from the Front Range.

“With the resources that we have and with the conditions that are up there, we have searched all probable areas,” said Kristia Check-Hill, the Routt County Search and Rescue volunteer who served as incident commander. “Until we have further information, we will not be going back into the field.”

The man was last heard from on Saturday, Nov. 4, Check-Hill said.

Family members contacted local law enforcement Saturday, Nov. 10, because they believed the man could be on some family property near Steamboat Lake.

Routt County Sheriff's Office deputies located the man’s vehicle on the property Saturday.

At 1:15 p.m. Saturday, a team of five Search and Rescue volunteers set out looking for the man in areas near the vehicle. They returned to town at 5:40 p.m. after poor conditions in the field made the search dangerous, Check-Hill said.

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“It’s hard to search in the conditions that we were up against — 10 inches of snow as it is and low visibility — but you put darkness on top of that, and you can't see what's even underneath your feet, so it does no good to be searching,” she said.

The safety of Search and Rescue volunteers is a priority, Check-Hill added.

At 8:15 a.m. Sunday, eight volunteers set out to comb additional areas mentioned by the family and other areas where they believed the man could be. Search and Rescue returned Sunday evening as conditions again worsened.

The family will continue to look for the man, Check-Hill said, though Search and Rescue warned them to be wary of the poor weather conditions. The family was instructed to report any clues to the man’s location to law enforcement.

To reach Eleanor Hasenbeck, call 970-871-4210, email ehasenbeck@SteamboatPilot.com or follow her on Twitter @elHasenbeck.