Seven snowmobilers missing

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— Six Colorado Mountain College students and a 16-year-old boy from Wisconsin remained missing Thursday night after apparently getting stranded Wednesday during a snowmobile trip in North Routt County.

The seven young men, one of whom is a guide with High Mountain Snowmobile Tours, were last seen at 7 p.m. Wednesday by another snowmobiler who left the group after it began snowing, Routt County Search and Rescue incident commander Darrel Levingston said.

Levingston said the group is presumed lost in the Lost Dog Road area near Farwell Mountain north of Clark.

The men are not part of a snowmobile tour.

High Mountain Snowmobile Tours officials began a search for the group about midday Thursday, and later called Search and Rescue after they failed to find the men. Search and Rescue crews began to mobilize at about 3 p.m. Thursday and searched the area until about 8 p.m., when efforts were called off until this morning because of darkness and heavy snow. Levingston said the search would resume at about 7 a.m. Friday.

Four U.S. Forest Service officers, a Routt County Sheriff's Office deputy and numerous High Mountain Snowmobile Tours guides are expected to assist with the search, Levingston said.

Levingston did not know whether the men were prepared to spend a night outside. Thursday night was their second night in the elements.

The Steamboat Springs area is under a snow and blowing snow advisory until 5 a.m. Saturday, according to the National Weather Service. As much as a foot of snow is expected to fall during that period, and wind gusts could reach as high as 50 mph.

The low temperature Thursday night was forecast at 13 degrees.

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