Chaffee County reports big uptick in search and rescues

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CHAFFEE COUNTY, Colo. — Search and Rescue is abnormally busy, with Chaffee County Search and Rescue North having responded to four late-night pages in three weeks on 14ers.

“Historically, this is not typical for CCSAR-N this time of year; it might mean more people are normalizing 14er hikes in winter conditions,” CCSAR-N said in a Facebook post.

Winter conditions exist in the mountains. The sun sets around 5 p.m. and temperatures typically drop into the single digits or colder at high elevations.

“You need to be prepared to spend the entire night in the mountains! Even if you, or a concerned friend/family member are able to contact CCSAR-N (remember that cell coverage is extremely limited in Chaffee County’s backcountry!) to report that you are overdue, injured or lost… due to conditions, CCSAR-N may not be able to respond until morning,” CCSR-N wrote.