Climber falls 900 feet to her death when rock gives way on Colorado peak, sheriff says

A woman climbing Capitol Peak near Aspen fell 900 feet to her death, Colorado officials say.

Other climbers reported the Denver woman, who was climbing solo, fell about 8 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 3, the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release.

Although the initial report said the woman fell up to 2,000 feet from just below the 14,137-foot summit, rescuers found she had fallen about 900 feet and died, the release said.

Other climbers told rescuers the woman fell when a rock handhold gave way.

“Capitol Peak is considered one of Colorado’s most difficult mountains to climb with extreme exposure and loose, crumbling rock,” the sheriff’s office said.

Helicopters helped rescuers scout the terrain and close down trails before flying rescuers to retrieve the woman’s body from Pierre Lakes Basin, the release said.

Rescuers flew her body out Saturday afternoon and turned it over to the coroner’s office, sheriff’s officials said.

“The Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office and Mountain Rescue Aspen would like to remind backcountry enthusiasts that the Elk Mountains are treacherous and that the loose, rotting terrain can lead to unstable conditions that can cause serious injuries or death,” the release said.

Capitol Peak is about 14 miles west of Aspen, a city of 7,000 about 160 miles southwest of Denver.

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