Missing friend in Mammoth Lakes area

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Messages 1961 - 1980 of total 2358 in this topic << First  |  < Previous  |  Show All  |  Next >  |  Last >>
zBrown

Ice climber
Brujo de La Playa
Sep 15, 2013 - 06:14pm PT
After poking around a bit, I find that the world of metal detectors is indeed rife with fraudulent and bogus devices.

I'm not sure, however, why a "real" one will "'detect' everything in the ground, except what we need in this case."

Anyway, the wave of the future in this area seems to be drone searches. There's even someone claiming an "FS" (first save).


http://www.theverge.com/2013/5/10/4318770/canada-draganflyer-drone-claims-first-life-saved-search-rescue

Gonna be powerful too.

ARGUS's view is both wide and precise. It can cover areas of up to 15 square miles at a glance while still spotting objects as small as six inches around from heights of 17,500 feet. ARGUS not only streams the footage to the ground live, but keeps a stash of video on board as well, a staggeringly massive stash of up to 1 million terabytes (one exabyte) per day.

http://gizmodo.com/5979372/watch-the-worlds-highest-resolution-drone+mounted-camera-in-action
pacarockhound

Social climber
Escondido CA
Sep 15, 2013 - 06:55pm PT
Zbrown


That link to the lifesaving drone is amazing. Thanks for sharing.

Wish something like that could find Matt.
pacarockhound

Social climber
Escondido CA
Sep 15, 2013 - 06:58pm PT
ctadlock,

Did you learn of anything on your hike in Red Meadows, Iron Mountain?
tdg119

Social climber
Northampton, PA
Sep 15, 2013 - 08:05pm PT
Funny, we contacted a drone company (www.avinc.com) and not sure what interaction there was but they were ultimately told there was nothing they could do to help.

Not much new here. Really hoping they manage to track down Morales. Last I spoke to the detective he said they'd get a local officer in his hometon to pay a visit. After speaking to my parents today I got the impression Matt got to know them and spoke of them once or twice.

Aside from that I opened the missing persons in Matt's hometown. Don't know why I didn't do this 2 months ago but hadn't thought of it. PA detective to contact me Monday. Won't get into that mor until I know what they're able to do for us.
pacarockhound

Social climber
Escondido CA
Sep 15, 2013 - 09:11pm PT
maybe the drone company thought the area was too vast, or too many unknowns.....?
zBrown

Ice climber
Brujo de La Playa
Sep 15, 2013 - 09:53pm PT
Funny, we contacted a drone company (www.avinc.com) and not sure what interaction there was but they were ultimately told there was nothing they could do to help.

Definitely a "future" for the general public. In addition to a couple of mentions on this thread, there was a thread somewhere a while back where the technology was discussed. My memory is that it is not as expensive as one would think. I'll look around.

crankster

Trad climber
South Lake Tahoe, CA
Sep 15, 2013 - 11:08pm PT
Aside from that I opened the missing persons in Matt's hometown. Don't know why I didn't do this 2 months ago but hadn't thought of it. PA detective to contact me Monday. Won't get into that mor until I know what they're able to do for us.

Smart move. Time to try anything. At this point in time, I think the odds of Matt's presumed remains being found in the Sierra before winter = the odds of him turning up alive in PA or elsewhere, gone missing for whatever reason.

I'm really hoping the family receives closure soon. They have done so much, pursued every avenue; such an admirable, loving group of people.

One solid clue. It's what we've all hoped for.
T H

Boulder climber
extraordinaire
Sep 15, 2013 - 11:52pm PT
looking forward to ctadlock's tr.
kenish

Gym climber
Orange County, CA
Sep 16, 2013 - 12:04am PT
++ to crankster!! ^^^^

A thought about Matt's nighttime phone pattern. Where would Matt charge his phone? He probably left it somewhere to charge since I assume there were no outlets in a secure place at the campground. He may have asked neighboring campers to charge it in their car or RV. Did Matt's belongings include an AC charger, a car charger (cigarette lighter), or both? The other thought is he charged it in his car at the garage.

His nighttime pattern may have been different on the 16/17th simply because he had no place to charge the phone...no neighboring campers, or his car was locked up in the service bay for final repairs. So he kept it with him in the tent.

I know this is low-value conjecture but it could be a very simple answer to "what was different on the last night?"
LAhiker

Social climber
Los Angeles
Sep 16, 2013 - 02:51am PT
Tiffany,

I hope the Morales family provides some useful info. It's good that you opened that missing person case in Bethlehem. I hope that either the Bethlehem police or Detective Hornbeck can help get access to Matt's email accounts. I also hope that SplitPants has some luck with the Mammoth Lakes library network admin.

Maybe one or more of these avenues will provide a break in the case or at least help narrow things down.
pacarockhound

Social climber
Escondido CA
Sep 16, 2013 - 02:59am PT
Agreed!
ctadlock

Mountain climber
Mammoth Lakes
Sep 16, 2013 - 10:40am PT
Trip Report: Red's Meadow - Iron Mt

Summary: We did not find any sign of Matt. We searched the area from Reds Meadow to Fern Lake, then up to the crest via the main ridge, up to the first major peak, then down the crest, then down the chute back to Fern Lake. We were unable to summit; not enough time. We did not see any other hikers on the trail. From the crest we used binoculars to scan a very large area. Our group included myself, my girlfriend and my golden lab (Odie); we are acclimated to the altitude (we live here), experienced in the mountains and moved fairly quickly. I paid special attention to Odie sniffing things, but all he found was animal tracks.

Notes: This is an extremely rugged hike. While there is a trail up to Fern Lake, beyond that there is not a defined trail nor is there an obvious route that you would take up. I'd say there are 4-5 main routes up spanning a 2 mile wide area of the crest; we only checked 3. Any snow on the mountain at that time might totally change the route up. This makes it very difficult to know which area to search. The terrain is very, very loose granite chunks. It would be very easy to slip due to a rock sliding out or cause a rock slide; we had both happen several times. Beyond the crest, to the summit which we did not reach looked hazardous as well due to the rocks and the often high-wind gusts. Winds in that area can be very severe. We left Reds at 7am and returned at 5:30pm. From the crest I guesstimate it would have taken another 2 hours to the summit; that would put the total trip time at 14-15 hrs for an out and back. To go down the other side, and do the full loop would add some time as well. This area has a lot of animal activity; lots of deer, bear, ground rodents, birds and possible coyote (not sure how high they go up).

Opinion: I do not think that any hiker acting in a responsible manner would attempt this hike in one day while alone; doing so would be very risky. Even if Matt was a very fast hiker this is still a 20 mile, 14 hr hike on difficult terrain. One thing to note, he would have needed alternate transportation to Reds Meadow. The public buses and shuttle do not run until 8-9AM (depending on which one). If he took that it would delay the start ~2 hrs to about 9am. At that point an expected return time would be very late at night, and again there wouldn't be public transportation back to Shady. There is no chance he walked from Shady to Reds. Due to the animal activity, any remains would be scattered over a large area quickly. To get to the summit register, would require either an overnight hike or a small group of very fast hikers singularly focused on getting to the summit, and they would need an alpine start.

UPDATE 1:

Here is a map of the area we had good visibility to search for.
Credit: ctadlock


UPDATE 2:

This has probably been done.. but the trail to Fern Lake is a regular mule pack trail (lots of manure on the trail). The pack outfits should be contacted.

We did find a small button on the south shore of Fern lake.
Credit: ctadlock

UPDATE 3:

Here are some photos of the terrain, to give you an idea.
looking up at the main ridge from fern lake
looking up at the main ridge from fern lake
Credit: ctadlock
look up at the chute we came down from into fern lake
look up at the chute we came down from into fern lake
Credit: ctadlock
looking north at the ridge above anona lake
looking north at the ridge above anona lake
Credit: ctadlock
looking at the minarets past anona lake
looking at the minarets past anona lake
Credit: ctadlock
looking at the ridge leading to iron mt above anona lake
looking at the ridge leading to iron mt above anona lake
Credit: ctadlock
500+ft of loose granite scree
500+ft of loose granite scree
Credit: ctadlock
looking down the chute; we are past the steep section
looking down the chute; we are past the steep section
Credit: ctadlock
zBrown

Ice climber
Brujo de La Playa
Sep 16, 2013 - 01:02pm PT
Does anyone know how many cellphone towers there are in the Mammoth area?

Is there a good map? What I found so far doesn't get down to the detail level neeeded.

Getting warmer.

http://www.antennasearch.com/sitestart.asp?sourcepagename=reportviewer2&prevsessionidnum=525400415&prevordernum=
1&previtemnum=1§ionname=towerreview&pagename=towerreview&pagenum=
1&cmdrequest=pagehandler


kenish

Gym climber
Orange County, CA
Sep 16, 2013 - 01:55pm PT
@ctadlock- Great search effort which everyone appreciates...everything helps but physical searches are the most valuable since they're ultimately how Matt will be found. Note the button you found uses British/Canadian/Aussie spelling, not the American spelling.

@zBrown- Discussed before, the Verizon logs included 3 sites in the Mammoth area...by the library, near Norco (auto service center), and by the top chalet on top of the mountain. The exact lat/lon provided were confirmed on Google satellite and street views and incidental photos of the top chalet. The "antenna finder" site is the wrong context for your investigation and the map only shows 1 of the 3 Verizon sites (it shows tower structures only and not the many different "tenants" on a typical tower). Hope this helps, send me a message if you need the exact lat/lon.

zBrown

Ice climber
Brujo de La Playa
Sep 16, 2013 - 02:04pm PT
On the same site, the antennas map shows 90 within 4 miles of 96 Beaver Ct., while 5 towers are shown on the tower map. It even breaks down antennas as to single or multiple. It's an interesting site. Trying to see if the 4 mile range can be expanded.

http://www.antennasearch.com/sitestart.asp?sourcepagename=reportviewer2&prevsessionidnum=525400415&prevordernum=
1&previtemnum=1§ionname=txreview&pagename=txreview&pagenum=
1&cmdrequest=pagehandler

EDIT: URL's have had carriage returns inserted to stop stretching the page.
kenish

Gym climber
Orange County, CA
Sep 16, 2013 - 03:24pm PT
^^zBrown- That's way better! On the map and list, #1, #12, and #52 are the 3 locations of Verizon sites. FYI, anything in the 450 or 800MHz band is CDMA to/from phone handsets. Other Verizon frequencies are for their internal infrastructure.

A cell site is 9-15 antennas arranged in a triangle; each one covers a 20-40 degree slice. The approximate direction from the cell site can be figured out by knowing which antenna(s) a phone "hit". I seem to recall that Verizon won't research it without law enforcement involvement.

From personal experience, Verizon coverage west of Minaret Summit is spotty at best and usually zero. There may be coverage higher up the east slope of Ritter and the Minarets (cell signals are mostly line-of-sight) if the site on Mammoth Mtn is set up for a 360 degree signal. Coverage at Lake Mary is good...terrain is the big thing.
HighTraverse

Trad climber
Bay Area
Sep 16, 2013 - 03:41pm PT
I've been away for several days. Had my head buried in work including a trip to Seattle.
CyDuke posted a very good link a few days ago.
http://hikenhi.smugmug.com/Davids-Hiking-and/Mount-Ritter-July-2013
"David" spent several days in the Minarets/Ritter/Banner area alone and with a friend in mid August this year
The 2nd photo on the site is his topo map.

His base camp was at the site above Ediza.
Besides the excellent high definition photos of several aspects of the range there is useful information.
Routes he/they covered
First: Solo Ediza->Iceberg->Cecile
then ascended South Notch. Climbed NW ridge of Kehrlein Minaret. He has many photos of Amphitheater Lake (which he thinks is un-named and calls "alpine" lake) and East face of Adams, back side of Ken and return via South Notch. The ruggedness of the area, especially the E Face of Adams is clear (Secor has no routes listed for E Face of Adams)

We can consider South Notch east side and NW route on Kerhlein covered. Note that he needed his crampons on the South Notch glacier.

His second outing was with friend and they climbed Ritter via SE Glacier. He also has a photo of another climber descending the glacier.
We can consider Ritter SE glacier covered.

Third trip, also with friend, was a round trip around Nydiver lakes towards NE side of Banner. A lot of XC travel but no climbing.

His fourth, also solo: Attempted the Central Chute on Clyde Minaret. Approached via Cecile Lake and climbed about 4 pitches before retreating from a 5th class section.
We can consider the traverse from Cecile Lake to beneath the N Face of Clyde Minaret covered. There's still a considerable distance from there to Cragman's furthest south excursion along the same giant ledge system.

This helps us eliminate (at least for the first pass) a lot of difficult ground. His notes contain a lot of detail and we can assume they didn't come across anything suspicious.

These are excellent reference photos, especially for the snow/ice conditions a month after Matt's disappearance.
He might be contacted to see if he can be of any help with information about Matt

F
pacarockhound

Social climber
Escondido CA
Sep 16, 2013 - 08:32pm PT
CTadlock --- thank you!!!
pacarockhound

Social climber
Escondido CA
Sep 16, 2013 - 08:34pm PT
High Traverse - thank you for reposting that link to photos. What a great reference they are!

Cyduke - thank you for posting that link.

Will someone be contacting the photographer to see if he noticed anything unusual?
Dan Watson

climber
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Sep 17, 2013 - 03:33pm PT
Here's an update on the Mammoth Lakes missing person investigation. I just got back after being out of town for over one week. Detective Hornbeck finally located Morales. He didn't have any valuable information, but believed that if he reviewed the missing pages, that could trigger his memory. This information has been provided to Jill and Tiffany who will follow-up with Morales.

Detective Hornbeck has been in contact with the Bethlehem Sergeant who is handling their missing person investigation. All of our reports and files have been sent to him. They will be exchanging any information they discover.

Hornbeck was also able to access Matt's work e-mails. Nothing of value was there. It was all work related.



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