January 14 Update

The search continues……

We are continuing to work on the one video opportunity we have; the company has promised to send us the video, and we will be reviewing it as soon as we get it.

In the meantime, we have two questions that we are hoping someone can help us with:

We are trying to follow every lead, and some CDT trail volunteers remember some friends that Steve had in the Quemado area. Here is what they reported to Teresa Martinez, Director of the CDT Coalition (and a lifeline for us!):

However, as they thought back on the time Otter spent with them last year, they remembered that he had mentioned he had met a bunch of survivalists in or around Quemado and had stayed with them for a few days, as they invited him to stay. They are totally off the grid, and we have no idea if they have phones/internet or anything of the like, but they thought it might be worth mentioning. They have no idea exactly where, as he wouldn’t tell them where it was, only that it was around Quemado. Could it be possible that he headed back there? Who knows, but they asked me to mention that to you.

Does anyone know anything about these friends of Steve’s?

Secondly, in one of the sightings, the witness reported a beanie hat. We know about a baseball cap, but does anyone know whether Steve had a beanie, and if so, can you describe it: color? fabric? pom-pom? Any information you have could be helpful.

We also sent a press release to every media outlet in New Mexico that we could reach. Here’s hoping it generates some more sightings.

And we sure could use some more pictures, if anyone has any.

Thanks for everyone for their support.

January 9 Update

A couple of people have asked about the sightings that have been reported and our inability to get confirmation whether or not this hiker is Steve. Essentially, we have been stuck in this purgatory where there have been several sightings of a hiker—even credible reports that the hiker might be Steve—but we have been unable to get any confirmation. Here’s where we are:

Continue reading “January 9 Update”

January 5 Update

We thought we had a break yesterday, albeit a confusing one, when someone reported seeing Steve (if it was Steve) walking east on Hwy 60 east of Springerville, Arizona. According to the witness, he was booking when she saw him at 11 am. He had a beard, baseball cap, and no jacket but maybe a shirt with red and black—she couldn’t remember. She called us a few hours later, when she saw the poster and realized that it might be the person she saw. By the time the State Police got there, there was no sign of him. We have received no word today of any sightings, and our calls and emails to people in Quemado, Pie Town, and Reserve haven’t yielded any sign of him.

Please don’t ask us how or why he was in Lordsburg and then was all the way in Springerville, Arizona (about 200 miles by car), a few days later, because we don’t have a clue. If anyone knows what he could possibly have been doing in Springerville or how he got there, please let us know.

The good news is, if this is Steve, that he is in good physical shape. The really bad news is we don’t know where he is going to go next. It was one thing when he was on the trail, so we had some idea of where he was heading, but now? If anyone has any ideas about where he may be headed, please tell us.

So now all we can do is rely on our publicity. We have contacted everyone we can in Quemado, Pie Town, and Reserve, but if you know anyone in that area, please tell them about Steve.

Many thanks to the literally dozens of people now who have helped with this search.

January 3 Update

Two of Otter’s friends drove the length of New Mexico over the holiday week and stopped in all of the likely towns where a CDT hiker would stop. They are the ones who found some great leads in Cuba, which we are still trying to confirm (it isn’t easy doing this during the holidays).

They also found someone in Lordsburg who recognized Otter’s now-famous SF pullover and hat, but wasn’t so sure about the person himself. If Steve had hiked on roads and really put in miles every day, it is possible that he made it to Lordsburg by December 31. We are following up on this lead right now and will keep everyone posted if we find anything.

If you live in or near the Lordsburg area, please keep your eyes peeled for Steve. Print some posters to pass out (volunteers have covered most of the likely businesses), and if you are on or near Hwys 113, 9, or 81, please watch for Steve in case he is headed towards the southern terminus. We have also notified all of the authorities to be on the lookout as well.

If Steve is not the person identified in Lordsburg, there is still the real possibility that he is hiking at a more reasonable pace and is approaching Silver City, so we have notified many people and businesses in Silver City to watch for him. Another possibility is he is in trouble somewhere on the trail somewhere south of Grants, so if people want to search, we are trying to coordinate that as best we can. Please see our Search Information page before you start, because, above all, we want to make sure you STAY SAFE.

If you live anywhere near the trail in this area, one thing you can do is check out road crossings for foot prints. And please keep handing out posters; it’s amazing how quickly people forget.

If you need a map of the trail, go to the Continental Divide Trail Coalition’s interactive map.

Thank you to everyone for their support and assistance while we find Otter.

January 1 Update

As the search continues, we thought it would be easiest if we set up social media in order to communicate with Otter’s family and friends. Here’s the latest update:

We have credible but unconfirmed sightings of Steve in several businesses in Cuba in early December and in Grants on December 10. There have been no sightings since.

We are trying to confirm these sightings. In the meantime, assuming this hiker is Steve, there appear to be three possibilities:

• He is just fine and has bypassed the towns that are off the trail and is heading towards Silver City.

• He is visiting friends somewhere south of Grants.

• He is in trouble somewhere between Grants and the southern terminus.

We are doing a publicity blitz in the area between Grants and the southern terminus. As Silver City is right on the trail, so he is almost certain to pass through it and should be almost there if he wasn’t delayed on the trail, we are making every effort to cover Silver City as thoroughly as possible.

There is still the real possibility that Steve is in trouble somewhere on the trail, most probably somewhere south of Grants if he was, indeed, that hiker, so if people want to search, we are trying to coordinate that as best we can. Please see our Search Information page before you start, because, above all, we want to make sure you STAY SAFE.

Thank you to everyone for their support and assistance while we find Otter.