Found Deceased Spain - Esther Dingley, from UK, missing in the Pyrenees, November 2020 #6

Discussion in 'Located Persons Discussion' started by FrostOwl, Nov 29, 2020.

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  1. RickshawFan

    RickshawFan Verified Outdoor Recreation Specialist

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    IMO we have to rule out any direct route between Port de V and PortdelaG. There's no trail and it's impassable.
    I think the "shortcut" is too difficult and doesn't really go to the PortdelaG which seems to have been the goal. Plus, LE says there's no evidence ED was at the RdeV.
    Here you go for Cabane de Besurtas to PortdelaG to PicdelaG. There is no trail on the map for the last leg, but this blog indicates (as I understand it) it's obvious at the Port. Montesymasdebucuesa: 42-14. PICO DE LA GLERA POR LA ARISTA SUDOESTE. 6-6-14.
     
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  2. Federico_A

    Federico_A Well-Known Member

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    Can't agree with that theory at all. If she had slipped on the scree path down from Port de la Glere she would have been easily found. Also, I stick to my suspicion that she didn't go into France at all, partly because it wouldn't make sense for her to descend Port de la Glere without doing the whole Imperatrice route and ending up at Port de Venasque where she was previously. If she was going to do the loop she would have done it from Venasque. and I don't think she would do it at all because of the hiking embargo.

    Perhaps everyone is overlooking too that there is no way a piece of skull could have got to where it was found without the assistance of vultures. Even if the skull was broken in a fall of the cliff, snow drift would hardly account for just one piece of it being found lower down - maybe a small avalanche would carry it down, but that would assume the body was out in the open and not tightly tucked away among the rocks - and then why just one piece? I've seen those vultures in action in the Pyrenees - believe me, that's what they do. There'll be other pieces elsewhere (assuming they didn't eat it all).

    The only conclusion can be that she was off the path, in a perilous place, and didn't take sufficient care.
    That triple recklessness seems so improbable and so uncharacteristic though that it surely supports the suicide theory.
     
  3. RickshawFan

    RickshawFan Verified Outdoor Recreation Specialist

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    The slope goes to 60 degrees or so. There are few switchbacks. There are places where there are cliff-like drop-offs next to the trail. It is largely scree. If it was damp from dew or fog, it would have become frosted or icy. ED had worn, light weight hiking shoes, not lugged boots.
    Keep in mind most alpine accidents are on the descent. A fall on that slope could have been disastrous. The difficulty of the slope is more apparent from the bottom and on maps. There are many posted upthread.
     
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  4. searancke

    searancke Well-Known Member

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    Snipped for focus....

    But don't forget she also had the "famous tarptent" I can imagine if she did dip into france she might want not to be seen and stayed in the tent overnight, not a French refuge on trails that were closed.
     
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  5. yddraigfach

    yddraigfach Member

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    Totally agree - if she had wild-camped responsibly, she would have only left behind slightly flattened grass.

    I had revised the final sentence of that paragraph just before I posted, and meant to re-write 'at or near Refuge de Venasque'...
     
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  6. RedHaus

    RedHaus Well-Known Member

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    "Her remains were surrounded by some of her hiking kit, including brightly coloured clothes and a yellow sleeping mat."

    Thank you @pineapple23 for this article, even if it is from DM! I too am losing track of the flurry of recent articles. But there is one statement that has caught my eye in the last couple articles that have been posted here. Its the one I bolded above from the article you linked. And I recognize folks are concerned about translation.

    That said, I can understand clothes might be separated from a skeleton by decomposition or scavengers. And I recognize a voluntary removal of clothes is a classic sign of end stage hypothermia. But its the yellow sleeping mat that really catches my eye, IF this is accurate reporting. The mat might have been attached to her backpack and fell off during a fall and landed with ED's body. But, IMO, it also could indicate ED was using the mat for comfort either because she was injured or because she was going to end her life. And if she set up her mat, IMO, she may also have set up her lightweight 'tent', which immediately or eventually (e.g. after her death) flew away.

    While neither of these 'findings' help us differentiate whether ED died due to an accident vs. suicide, they could, IMO, indicate ED may have died from hypothermia.

     
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  7. mrjitty

    mrjitty Well-Known Member

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    We have to differentiate between passive and active radio and modes.

    A phone in complete airplane mode is not transmitting any radio signals that would allow it to be tracked from a remote station.

    I believe a phone in a passive mode could still receive GPS signals which do not require an active connection. e.g my garmin sports watch has GPS which allows it to position itself - but that is a passive reception - it does not communicate with the GPS satellite - so you cannot track me remotely ....

    The article is talking about the phone having its location services turned off, but still with an active radio signal - which would mean it could be tracked from the towers, even it if wasn't syncing cloud location data.
     
  8. mrjitty

    mrjitty Well-Known Member

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    Lots of this speculation will be cleared up when we get decent reporting - e.g. whether it looked like she had set up a camp, or whether she was injured, and thus accessed her gear, or whether things simply got scattered around a bit by elements and animals.

    But what we are hearing is accident, so my guess is it's pretty clear she had a fall.
     
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  9. RedHaus

    RedHaus Well-Known Member

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    I wonder about the location of where ED was found and whether she died in that location.

    What if ED died by suicide somewhere on or near the summit of Pic dl Glere, perhaps in a concealed nook between boulders? As I have suggested upthread, maybe she found the perfect spot to end her life at the top of Pic dl Glere with a view of Maladeta Glacier (ED found glaciers mystical). In that scenario, is it possible ED's body and stuff tumbled from wherever she died to the location where she was found (and a piece of her skull fell further down the Port dl Glere scree), perhaps when snows melted?
     
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  10. gribb0

    gribb0 Active Member

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    I was thinking the same about that sleeping mat. The dossier says she had NeoAir Thermarest - it packs down really small in its own bag rather than being rolled and attached to the backpack so if it was out on the ground it suggests a deliberate camp - by which I mean she could still be injured in a fall but at that point able to take shelter.
     
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  11. Federico_A

    Federico_A Well-Known Member

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    The fact that her gear was found with her indicates to me that she fell from much lower down on Pic de la Glere rather than the top (she surely wouldn't carry all her gear on an up-down hike, especially one involving a scramble). There is a small path going up the lower shoulder of Pic de la Glere towards the escarpment (see attached picture). I'm guessing she fell from point X.
     

    Attached Files:

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  12. mrjitty

    mrjitty Well-Known Member

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    Trouble is we are reading into reported words extra content that might not be accurate. I think all of this will be cleared up very soon.
     
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  13. IrisElizabeth

    IrisElizabeth Well-Known Member

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    As much discussed on earlier threads, there were many hints on Esther's social media that things were not all rosy in her world, she was quoting song lyrics, and writing about her feelings a lot on facebook and instagram. And this coupled with the fact that the police actually made the point of saying that all was not well between her and DC along with the statement from her fellow hiker Laura means that there were many signs that she was perhaps in a troubled state of mind.
     
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  14. Tortoise

    Tortoise Well-Known Member

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    I'm thinking this was either through choice or she found herself trapped, perhaps slipped down a rock face which didn't injure her but took her to a place she found impossible to climb out of, so she was able to access the sheltered spot and bad weather moved in. She might have tried to use her tent to attract notice but no one was looking for her at that point and she quickly succumbed to the temperatures and lack of food and water supplies. I just don't see how a major fall with bad injuries would see her with her pack off and her belongings taken out of her pack, and ending up in a sheltered crevice too.
     
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  15. mrjitty

    mrjitty Well-Known Member

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    DM is now claiming (but sourced), that the skull was found very close to the body - only 100m apart. So as expected, the skull find really narrowed down the search area - but also shows how hard it is to find a body without a helicopter.

    My guess is it you couldn't see the body uphill from the track - e.g if a fall it came to rest against an obstruction or choke point - so you'd likely only see it from the peak

    Esther Dingley's boyfriend 'paced up and down for DAYS' retracing her steps until he found her body | Daily Mail Online
     
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  16. Tortoise

    Tortoise Well-Known Member

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    I hope her phone yields some clues.

    I was a little surprised by this - "
    'In the past few weeks, we haven't been back to look specifically in this area. The Spanish investigators had surveyed this sector, but on the Spanish side.

    'Esther's Dingley's body was found at the northern slope of Pic de Gléré. "
     
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  17. mrjitty

    mrjitty Well-Known Member

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    Being brutal, I don't find it surprising. Likely waited for the right weather and availability for an aerial search.
     
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  18. Tortoise

    Tortoise Well-Known Member

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    We're in August now though, I think the conditions aren't to blame at this time of year, since the piece of her skull was found.
     
  19. mrjitty

    mrjitty Well-Known Member

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    RSBM

    Is it uncharacteristic?

    She is already in an alpine area, parts of which are closed, by herself, in November, without proper kit and food, during a pandemic which risks SARS having to get together to come find her.

    My one rant (not aimed at you) is at the emerging "SARS should have done more to find her" schtick

    Why should SARS find people who are up alone, off their route, during a pandemic, out of season - lost in 100s of square miles of rugged terrain? How many days and weeks should they spend on it when they don't even know if she is up there?

    This is why NZ closed its beaches and trails during the pandemic - because it is not fair to expect people to come look for you.

    / one time rant.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2021
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  20. mrjitty

    mrjitty Well-Known Member

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    Like I say, being brutal, they are not going to drop everything to go climbing around many square miles of terrain in a non-emergency situation when it could take more days or weeks.

    It seems they planned an aerial search, when wind/cloud were good.

    It's possible they are exaggerating their lack of response, but on the other hand we have to be realistic as to what resources will be allocated to this type of situation.
     
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