A missing Colorado hiker’s dog has returned home after eight days of being lost on the Hessie Trailhead in Boulder County. Josh Hall and his dog “Happy” set out on February 3 just as a major winter storm system hit the area. Search crews initiated their search that night when the two never returned. The first sign of the pair was when the dog was found eight days later on a highway about nine miles from the trailhead.
The dog had lost 10-15 pounds but showed no signs of frostbite, which has caused some speculation into whether the two were able to find shelter. More than 70 rescuers have joined in the search for Hall, but inclement weather has caused serious setbacks. The search has recently been suspended due to hazardous weather.
Hall’s cellphone was last pinged near the Devil’s Thumb Trail/Diamond Lake cut off. Authorities say there have been no significant changes to the search plans since his dog has been found. They have narrowed the search area down to the Devil’s Thumb Lake, which they believe Josh was attempting to hike. The search team was able to reach the east end of the lake but couldn’t continue the search due to white-out visibility, avalanche hazards, and chest-deep snow. Josh is 6’4″, 200 pounds, and was last seen wearing a green khaki jacket, dark hat, and carrying a green backpack and black leash. If anyone has tips or information contact Boulder County dispatch at 303-441-4444.