NH Fish And Game Seeking Help With Missing Hiker

JustJoe

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If she was dropped off at 5 am, then her and Mom would have started from home at 2 or 3 am? Wondering if that detail got confused in reports and they started from home at 5am?

A few more details have come out. She was staying in an are hotel/motel with her mom for this week. People have suggested do to lack of calls for help, that she didn't have a cell phone. But apparently that's not the case, she did have one. Possibly used it as a light source (speculation) at he start of her hike. And in the cold temps, could have drained it significantly enough not to allow for calls once in trouble. Again, just one of a hundred possibilities of what happened.
 

ChrisB

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A few more details have come out. She was staying in an are hotel/motel with her mom for this week...

She seems like a great kid. I surmise she and mom were up north for the week so she could finish the 4Ks before her 20th birthday later this week. (That also explains the inclusion of Flume in her hike plan.)

Makes it all the more tragic.

May she be found soon…
 

Nessmuk

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And so it repeats..... whether true in this specific incident case or not.... I can't tell. you how many NY Adirondack search rescue reports I have read where after being found (if they are lucky) the subject says: "but my phone doubles as a flashlight". Right. It also doubles as a dead battery when you might need it even more.
 

iAmKrzys

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To add a glimmer of hope here, I recall two cases of lost skiers in recent history:
  1. In early 2004 Dan Witkowski, a lost skier in Cascade Mountains, survived 4 nights in frigid temperatures before being found.
  2. In 2018 (perhaps late 2017) a firefighter from Toronto, Danny Filippidis, went missing I believe while skiing on Whitheface Mountain only to be found in Sacramento, California after some time.
You can google both of these cases to get more details.
 

JustJoe

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Mike P.

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I believe the story is getting regional or larger coverage as my wife knows about the story and doesn't read anything but the CT paper and what she gets on her online feed and FB and she's not part of any hiking groups.

It's just heartbreaking. Is there too much hype in FB Groups, Instagram, etc on doing things like the 4,000'ers without the warnings you would get here and from AMC in both the WMG in print & I imagine the online version. Can VFTT offer more education? While we seem to be better suited being our own smaller community, would newer hikers be better served if VFTT was more open and promoted in FB hiking groups.

Maybe VFTT and the ADK High Peaks Forum could be linked or promoted on All Trails
 

DayTrip

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I believe the story is getting regional or larger coverage as my wife knows about the story and doesn't read anything but the CT paper and what she gets on her online feed and FB and she's not part of any hiking groups.

Boston Globe.com had an article on it the night the story broke on the SAR groups. It was basically just a copy of NH F&G's release.
 

Nessmuk

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To add a glimmer of hope here, I recall two cases of lost skiers in recent history:
  1. In 2018 (perhaps late 2017) a firefighter from Toronto, Danny FilipIpidis, went missing I believe while skiing on Whitheface Mountain only to be found in Sacramento, California after some time.
You can google both of these cases to get more details.

i spent two days searching on Whiteface with my SAR team. I am not a downhill skier, so this was quite a unique experience for me to get a free Whiteface lift ticket. I met his wife and chidren and fellow firefighter team members at the lodge. How sad and confused they were. They had no idea what happened to Danny. Also unique was discovering the jerk was found in Sacremento, still wearing ski gear. He never made any admission of how he got there and it remains a secret to this day. Other similar unsolved cases often come with rumors of the guy relaxing on a beach in Florida with a new girlfriend. What a waste of resources.
 

Grey J

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This is certainly a minor point considering the situation, but I thought the description of her itinerary (which has not altered) was a little odd. It was described as Lafayette, Little Haystack, and Flume. A 48 peakbagger doing the ridge for the first time might be more likely to describe it as Lafayette, Lincoln, Liberty and Flume, or as a Franconia Ridge traverse. Perhaps she already had Lincoln and Liberty. Not sure how Little Haystack sneaked in there. In addition, the plan to exit by descending Flume Slide Trail in those conditions at the end of a long day, in what has been described as sneakers or trail runners, sounds a recipe for disaster if she got that far. It also speaks to her lack of awareness about the terrain, the winter conditions, and the relative difficulty of the trails in the area.
 

Sherby

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In addition, the plan to exit by descending Flume Slide Trail in those conditions at the end of a long day, in what has been described as sneakers or trail runners, sounds a recipe for disaster if she got that far. It also speaks to her lack of awareness about the terrain, the winter conditions, and the relative difficulty of the trails in the area.

I always assumed that doing Flume out and back then going down Liberty Springs was the usual "winter" route and I'm pretty sure everyone would be surprised if her journey went wrong descending Flume.
 
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Montana

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According to some posts on NH F&G LE FB page her body has been found in a drainage below greenleaf hut. People heard the call on Broadcastify. Obviously needs verification but was posted by multiple people. Tragic outcome.
 

DayTrip

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According to some posts on NH F&G LE FB page her body has been found in a drainage below greenleaf hut. People heard the call on Broadcastify. Obviously needs verification but was posted by multiple people. Tragic outcome.

Man that sucks. Unfortunately it doesn't come as a surprise though. If that is in fact the location she did not get very far, as many speculated. I think the fatalities as a result of "summit fever" are the worst of all and seemingly impossible to prevent when a goal gets that engrained in someone's mind.
 

Mike P.

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I always assumed that doing Flume out and back then going down Liberty Springs was the usual "winter" route and I'm pretty sure everyone would be surprised if her journey went wrong descending Flume.

Liberty was my first winter 4K, then did Flume and Liberty from Lincoln Woods

We've had past VFTT'ers in Walker Ravine which might be described as beneath the Hut. As a parent with two kids near her age, no parent comprehends this happening to their child.
 

Mike P.

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What can we do different to try and prevent the next young or older individual from this happening again?
 

ChrisB

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What can we do different to try and prevent the next young or older individual from this happening again?

I'd like to see solar powered electronic signboards at high-incident trail heads, similar to the ones used along highways.

They could display up-to-date information about trail condition, weather above treeline, and expected changes in weather in next 24 hours.

Keep signboards blacked out until someone walks near, then activate the display. Save batt and less visual pollution.

Who owns content and update? F&G seems logical since they get the call outs.
 

NHClimber

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Missing Massachusetts Hiker Located Deceased, Mt. Lafayette
Franconia, NH: Just after 11:00 AM searchers located the body of Emily Sotelo on the northwest side of Mount Lafayette, in Franconia. Emily had departed on a solo hike of Franconia Ridge on the morning of November 19th. When Emily had not returned at the planned time a family member notified NH Fish and Game. Due to the harsh weather conditions a search commenced Sunday evening and thru the night. Searchers were hampered by high winds, cold temperatures and blowing snow. Searchers spent the next two days looking for Emily and Tuesday afternoon tracks and items belonging to Emily were located at the headwaters of Lafayette Brook. A plan was made to concentrate the search effort in this area on Wednesday when ground searchers located her body at 11:15 AM. A NH Army National Guard helicopter was able to help with the extrication of Emily to the Cannon Mountain Ski Area.

Must have wandered off trail trying to turn back. Says headwaters -- is that high up that drainage - wonder if she wandered down the ridge after heading north on FRT or whether she wandered north after heading down to the hut. Super sad either way.
 
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