New Hampshire Fish and Game Law Enforcement Division and Operation Game Thief
A Massachusetts hiker, who had gone missing after departing on a solo hike over the weekend, was found dead in New Hampshire on Wednesday, according to the New Hampshire Fish and Game Law Enforcement Division and Operation Game Thief.
Emily Sotelo, 20, was found on northwest side of Mount Lafayette, in Franconia after departing on a hike of Franconia Ridge on Saturday.
A family member had reported Sotelo missing when she did not return at a planned time.
Sotelo was dropped off at Lafayette Place Campground in Franconia, New Hampshire on Sunday morning. She planned to hike Mount Lafayette, Haystack and Flume in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, according to law enforcement.
Three search teams were sent out to look for her on Sunday night, but temperatures along the ridge where she was hiking were about zero degrees with 30 to 40 mph winds, according to Pemigewasset Valley Search and Rescue Team, which helped with the search efforts.
“Due to the harsh weather conditions a search commenced Sunday evening and [through] the night. Searchers were hampered by high winds, cold temperatures and blowing snow,” New Hampshire Fish and Game Law Enforcement Division and Operation Game Thief said in a statement Wednesday.
Searchers spent two days looking for Sotelo before finding tracks and some of her belongings at the headwaters of Lafayette Brook on Tuesday. Her body was found Wednesday morning.
A New Hampshire Army National Guard helicopter was able to help with the extradition of Sotelo to the Cannon Mountain Ski Area, according to law enforcement. Officials did not release any information regarding Sotelo’s cause of death.
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