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Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Authorities search for hiker missing in Chirripó NP

Update: Authorities located the hiker’s body on Saturday morning. Read more via La Nación.

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Costa Rican authorities are searching for a woman who disappeared Tuesday while hiking to Cerro Ventisqueros, the country’s second-highest peak and part of Chirripó National Park.

On Friday morning, a search and rescue team reportedly found a hiking pole that may have belonged to Marialis Blanco, a 39-year-old nutritionist.

Blanco, an experienced hiker, was walking ahead of family members when she disappeared. Her uncle apparently heard her calling for help but couldn’t locate her, La Nacion reports.

Brigades from the Red Cross and a mountain-rescue team from the fire department have been searching for Blanco since Thursday using dogs, drones and other specialized equipment.

The Ventisqueros trail is known for its difficult conditions coupled with strong gusts of wind. The summit is Costa Rica’s second-tallest peak at 12,506 feet.

Cerro Chirripó is Costa Rica’s highest point, rising 12,533 feet above sea level and offering panoramic views to both oceans.

For most visitors, the hike to Chirripó or Ventisqueros begins in the small village of San Gerardo de Rivas. From the trailhead, the hike traverses 14 kilometers, mostly uphill, to Crestones Base Camp.

From there, visitors typically take day hikes to summit Chirripó or Ventisqueros, or to visit the other natural attractions in the area.

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