Sheriff locates campsite with human remains believed to be missing Chicago hiker James Nelson

By Real Vail
Real AspenMay 26, 2012
The Eagle County Sheriff's Office today reported the discovery of a campsite with human remains that officials believe to be James Nelson, a Chicago hiker missing near Mount of the Holy Cross since October of 2010.

Here's the entire press release from the sheriff's department:

A campsite believed to belong to missing Chicago hiker James Nelson was discovered on Friday (Eagle County Sheriff's Office photo).

On the afternoon of Friday, May 25, 2012, an individual scouting camp sites near Holy Cross City located a site that the Eagle County Sheriff's Office believes belonged to a missing hiker who disappeared in early October of 2010.

James Nelson, 31, of Chicago, was reported missing on October 3, 2010, by his fiancée, when he failed to return from his five day, 25-mile hike of the Holy Cross Wilderness area near Minturn.

This afternoon, Saturday May 26, 2012, Vail Mountain Rescue and detectives from the Eagle County Sheriff's Office, hiked to the location of what appears to be Nelson's camp site. During today's investigation human remains were recovered.

At this time the human remains have been turned over to the Eagle County Coroner's Office who will analyze them for identification.

Future searches of the area, utilizing a cadaver dog, are currently being scheduled with Vail Mountain Rescue.

A notebook located at the campsite indicated that Nelson may have been suffering from altitude sickness at the time of his disappearance. Other items recovered at the site indicate that some of Nelson's gear is missing. Among the missing items are a camera, GPS unit, and a camp stove.
Missing hiker James Nelson.

If you think you may have any information about this incident, please call the Eagle County Sheriff's Office at (970) 328-8500 or Eagle County Crime Stoppers at 970-328-7007, 1-800-972-TIPS, submit your tip online at, or text a tip from your cell phone by texting STOPCRIME plus your message to CRIMES (274637). If your tip leads to the arrest and indictment of any suspect involved, you could earn up to a $1,000 reward from the Crime Stoppers.

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