Search icon


14th Nov 2023

Missing hiker found dead two months after disappearance with dog still alive by his side

Nina McLaughlin

A missing hiker has been found dead two months after his disappearance with his dog still by his side.

Rich Moore went missing on 19 August, near Pagosa Springs in Colorado.

Accompanied by his Jack Russell Finney, the 71-year-old set out to hike Blackhead Peak.

However, Moore was never heard from again, and his body was discovered on 30 October by a rescue team.

Heartbreakingly, Finney was still alive and sat by his owner’s side when the rescuers arrived.

When the search for Moore began, reports claim that teams searched for over 2000 hours but were only able to locate his car.

Two months on from his initial disappearance, and Moore’s body was finally discovered by a hunter in the Lower Blanco drainage basin.

The Denver Gazette reported that upon the discovery of his body, the 14-year-old Jack Russell was alive and still sat by Moore’s side.

Search and rescue teams were deployed into the area to recover the body, and Finney was immediately sent to see a vet.

 Taos Search and Rescue shared an update on the search via Facebook.

TSAR member Delinda Vanne-Brightyn, who initially responded to the search, said: “We searched from just under the peak-top and directly West, searching down the mountain toward where his car was located.

“Winds were directly from the West/Soutwest. It was so steep, we were inserted in by a helicopter. He was found 2.5 miles East of the mountain-top beneath where we were inserted.”

The post concluded: “Delinda and TSAR would like to send our condolences to the family, but are glad they were able to gain some closure as well as bring their dog back home.”

The Denver Gazette reports that Moore’s cause of death is yet to be confirmed, but that no foul play is expected.