Search for missing runner shuts down part of Rocky Mountain National Park

Chad Pallansch had planned a one-day, 28-mile loop

A rugged section of Rocky Mountain National Park has been closed during the search for a trail runner who has been missing for more than a week.

A 5-square-mile area was closed to the public beginning at 6 p.m. According to park officials on Thursday, Oct. 5, this was done to reduce scent distractions for dogs used in the search for Chad Pallansch.

Pallansch, 49, an experienced trail runner who is familiar with the park, set out on a one-day, 28-mile loop out of Grand Lake on Sept. 27. His last contact was a text message sent around noon, indicating that he was close to the 13,310-foot summit of Mount Alice — his intended high point — and about 10 miles into the loop.

Despite the fact that much of his route was in remote and even trailless high country, if he had made it 17 miles, he would have been close to Bear Lake, a popular day trip destination.

Pallansch went missing on September 28, and his vehicle was discovered parked at a trailhead near Grand Lake by park rangers.

The closure area, which is located just west of Longs Peak, includes Mount Alice, McHenrys Peak, and the upper end of the North Inlet drainage.

According to park officials, this week’s search has been hampered by wintry weather, including snow and strong winds. On Tuesday, the park’s highway over the Continental Divide, Trail Ridge Road, was closed due to snow and ice.

According to reports, Pallansch was dressed for temperatures in the 40s. He had a navigation device but no emergency communication device with him.

Pallansch lives in Fort Collins, which is approximately 90 miles from Grand Lake. According to his social media profiles, he works for Hewlett-Packard as a software engineer.

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