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Search called off for missing U.S. climbers in Pakistan

The families of Kyle Dempster and Scott Adamson made the difficult decision to call off the search for the hikers missing in Pakistan since August 22, reports CBS station KUTV in Salt Lake City, Utah.

In a statement, a spokesperson said: “Given the time that has elapsed and the nearly continuous stormy weather since they were last seen, and the substantial risks that such high-altitude missions entail, Kyle and Scott’s families have made the extremely difficult decision to end the search efforts.”

Severe weather hampered search efforts until Saturday. Two Pakistani military helicopters left Skardu in clear weather. They landed at basecamp on the Choktoi Glacier and picked up climber Thomas Huber (Austria) who would assist as an observer/spotter. An exhaustive and close-proximity initial search of the north face of the Ogre 2, the northeast ridge, and the glacial basin between the Ogre 2 and Ogre 1, yielded no sign of the pair. After refueling, the two helicopters made a second sweep of all sides of the mountain, from an even higher altitude, and again found no sign of Kyle and Scott.


Dempster and Adamson were known as world class climbers. Dempster was the first American to win the French mountaineering award, Piloet d’Or. He won it twice, most recently in 2013 when he scaled Ogre 1.

“I think he had a huge impact on Salt Lake Climbing,” said Dempster’s childhood friend, Ty Snelling.

Snelling and Dempster opened a coffee shop called Higher Grounds in Millcreek 7 years ago.

“Kyle was always passionate about everything he did,” said Snelling. “He always would talk to people and share trips and stories. And listen to other people’s trips and stories.”

Those who knew Dempster and Adamson said they take solace knowing the two were lost doing what they love, but are still holding out hope.

Snelling said Dempster had been lost climbing once before and returned 20 days later.