Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by denvermikey » Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:18 pm

Denver Hiker’s Body Located in Hinsdale County
October 6, 2020
8:30 p.m.
Lake City, CO – The body of a Denver hiker reported missing late Sunday evening has been located in the San Juan Mountains near Lake City in Hinsdale County.
Ben Brownlee, 26, is presumed deceased after a body matching his description was located by helicopter approximately 5 p.m. on Tuesday, October 5. The body was spotted and identified by friends approximately 75 to 100 feet below a steep rocky ridge southeast of Cooper Creek Peak. The ridge runs between Cooper Creek Trail and Silver Creek Trail off of County Rd 30, southwest of Lake City along the Alpine Loop.
Brownlee’s family was notified immediately.
Recovery will begin Wednesday morning and will require specialized technical operations to reach and retrieve the body.
The search for Brownlee began early Monday morning after he was reported overdue from a solo hiking trip at midnight Sunday. His car was located at the trailhead of Redcloud and Sunshine Peak early Monday morning by Hinsdale County Sheriff Department. Helicopter sweeps of the area where Brownlee indicated he would be hiking took place Monday as well as on-the-ground searches by members of Hinsdale County Search and Rescue. On Tuesday, the search continued with more than a dozen search and rescue personnel on foot along with Brownlee’s family and friends. Brownlee was spotted with the use of a private helicopter chartered by his family.
State resources were in the process of being deployed to continue the search on Wednesday when notification of the discovery of Brownlee’s body was received. Hugh Zuker, Coordinator with Colorado Search and Rescue Association (CSAR) arrived in Lake City Tuesday to assist in the search and recovery.
Brownlee was last seen by a fellow hiker on Saturday morning, October 3, hiking in the general area east of Redcloud Peak near Lake City. Brownlee was an experienced and avid hiker, whose general itinerary was to hike 13,000-foot peaks in the Lake City area of the San Juan Mountains.
Hinsdale County Undersheriff Jordan Kaminski and Deputy Search & Rescue Coordinator Mike Ralph oversaw the search and rescue operation from Lake City. Hinsdale County Search and Rescue members assisting in the operation included Patrick Tubbs, Logan Rhodes, Mabree McClung, Rachel Moore, Peter Nesbitt, Richard Hurd, Jerry Johnson, Brant Cunningham, Christian Hartman and Wade Wandrey. Western State Search and Rescue personnel from Gunnison joining the search on Tuesday included Dominic Gamel, Matt Ziegler, Jayden Shelly and Brandon Bashan. Operational support was provided by Hinsdale County Sheriff deputies Brennen Pantelo, Charles Ferris and Tom Carl along with Barbara McDonald with Hinsdale County Sheriff Department and Hinsdale County EMS Director Buffy Witt.
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by Sbenfield » Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:25 pm

Awful news. I am so sorry.
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by Ptglhs » Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:34 pm

Condolences to those who cares about him.
He seems to have been making a really big push to do a lot of summits. I'm sorry he wasn't able to finish them safely.
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by bluegrassclimber » Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:47 pm

Sad to see this news. Condolences to Ben’s family and friends.
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by bmcqueen » Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:55 pm

Very sad. RIP Ben. My condolences to his friends and family.
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by Marmot72 » Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:55 pm

Such sad news. My sincere sympathy to those who knew him.

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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by bergsteigen » Tue Oct 06, 2020 10:02 pm

So sad to hear the news. RIP.

Cooper Creek Peak was my last 13er in the Lake City region. I remember that area from last fall.
Last edited by bergsteigen on Tue Oct 06, 2020 10:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by kushrocks » Tue Oct 06, 2020 10:07 pm

Having lost a couple of climbing partners myself and knowing how close he was to some mutual good friends I really felt this one. Every time something like this happens I am reminded of a poem our friend Terry Matthews, who also left us too soon, would bring up when something like this happens. Rest in Peace Ben.
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Last edited by kushrocks on Tue Oct 06, 2020 10:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by Matt Lemke » Tue Oct 06, 2020 10:16 pm

Ben's passion, friendship and stoke will never be forgotten. We were literally texting each other beta about long traverses Thursday night and wished one another a great weekend before we headed to our separate trailheads that night.

This one really hurts. :(
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by daway8 » Tue Oct 06, 2020 10:21 pm

So sorry to hear of the tragic outcome. :cry:
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by bunny256 » Tue Oct 06, 2020 11:24 pm

Awful news. So so sorry to his friends and family
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Re: Missing Hiker - Ben Brownlee

Post by climbingcue » Wed Oct 07, 2020 6:35 am

Terrible news, sorry to all his family and friends.
Consecutive months with at least one 14er, 38 months and counting...
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