Rescue teams in Colorado have been hampered by deep snow and bitter cold – and a frustrating lack of good information to go on – in the search for a father and son from St. Louis Park believed to have gone missing after a hike.
Authorities say that they don't have a "primary search area" in their effort to find Evan McManus, 18, and his father Damian McManus, 51, noting that days passed since anyone knew the two were missing, the Star Tribune reports. Officials also note that much snow has fallen since the two disappeared.
“We don’t have a direction of travel. We don’t know very much about what they had with them. Whatever trails they might have tried to take, there are easily four or five different trails," Bill Barwick, of the nonprofit Alpine Rescue Team, whose trained mountaineers respond to wilderness emergencies, said.
The father and son have not been heard from since Wednesday, and it has snowed nearly every day since, with winds up to 40 mph. Temperatures have dipped well below zero every night.
The two were supposed to return to Minnesota over the weekend after a spring break trip, but they never returned to their car or hotel after hiking at Echo Lake in Clear Creek County, Colorado.
The search was to resume at first light Tuesday morning with 50 searchers, 7 News Denver reports.
Twenty rescue team volunteers as well as others searched on Monday for the pair in the mountains above Echo Lake Monday, the Denver Post reports. Searchers are not sure what type of equipment the father and son had or what type of clothing they were wearing, the newspaper reports.
Their snow-covered Ford Edge was found in an Echo Lake parking lot Sunday and was still there Monday night, 7 News reports. "Hopefully they've used some ingenuity to stay alive," Alpine Rescue Team searcher Steve Wilson told the station.
Evan McManus and his twin sister are seniors at St. Louis Park High School. While the father and son went to Colorado, Katherine McManus, Damian's wife and Evan's mother, took Evan's twin sister Lauren to Mexico for a mother-daughter spring break trip. When they did not hear from the men on Sunday afternoon, they reported the pair missing.
Members of the McManus family set up a Facebook page about the missing pair, and friends and well-wishers were offering hope and prayers.