A black lab puppy that was involved in rollover crash on one of Colorado's most dangerous mountain roads has gone missing, prompting multiple searches.
The San Miguel County Sheriff's Office responded Saturday to reports of a Jeep Wrangler Sport that "rolled off and down several switchbacks" from Black Bear Pass onto Bridal Veil Road in Telluride.
The 22-year-old male driver told deputies he had shut off the engine, applied the emergency brake, and stepped out of the vehicle to help direct another driver when the jeep started to roll with his 23-year-old female friend inside.
The driver then tried to jump back into the jeep to steer it, but was thrown into rocks as it plunged from the pass. The Jeep then rolled down several switchbacks, ejecting the female passenger before coming to a rest on the roadway.
Decker, a 10-month old black lab, was one of two puppies in the Jeep that rolled off the 12,840-foot mountain pass.
The victims, both from the Durango area, were taken by EMS to the Telluride Medical Center. The 22-year-old male suffered minor injuries, while the 23-year-old female suffered more serious traumatic injuries. She was airlifted to St. Mary's Hospital in Grand Junction. Her current condition is not known.
Deputies were initially told by several bystanders that the two puppies that were in the vehicle were safe, but unfortunately that is not the case. Several people searched for Decker in the vicinity of the incident on Sunday, but were unsuccessful.
Black Bear Pass is one of the most extreme mountain roads found in the state rising to an elevation of 12,840 feet. The 4x4 road, also known as Forest Service Road 648, starts with the Forest Road 823 at the summit of Red Mountain Pass between the mountain towns of Ouray and Silverton and ends in Telluride. It is located in San Juan and San Miguel counties.
Responding agencies included the San Miguel County Search and Rescue, Telluride Fire Protection District EMS and Fire, and Telluride Marshal’s Deputies.
Anyone with information on Decker's whereabouts is asked to contact is to call dispatch at 970-728-1911.
Editor’s Note: Help fund search and rescue missions across the state of Colorado by purchasing a CORSAR card at ihelpsearch.org. This is not an insurance card. By purchasing a card, you are helping reimburse teams for costs incurred in providing help to lost and injured hikers, climbers, mountain bikers, hunters, ATV riders, skiers, snowboarders, and more.