Body of missing hiker is found in San Juan Mountains.

The body of a hiker, a Denver man reported missing Sunday evening, has been found in the San Juan Mountains.

Ben Brownlee, 26, is presumed dead after a body matching his description was spotted from a helicopter at about 5 p.m. Tuesday in Hinsdale County near Lake City, according to the sheriff’s office.

The body, discovered about 100 feet below a steep, rocky ridge southeast of Cooper Creek Peak, was identified by friends, the sheriff’s office said in a news release. The ridge runs between Cooper Creek Trail and Silver Creek Trail off of County Road 30.

His family has been notified. Recovery operations are underway.

A search for Brownlee began Monday morning after he was reported overdue, at about midnight Sunday, from a solo hiking trip, the sheriff’s office said.

More than a dozen search and rescue crew members, along with family and friends of Brownlee, participated in the effort to locate him. His family chartered a private helicopter as part of the search.

An experienced hiker, Brownlee was last seen by a fellow hiker Saturday morning east of Redcloud Peak, a news release said. His general itinerary was to hike 13,000-foot peaks near the Lake City area.

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