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Effective Monday, August 6, 2007, the search efforts for lost backpacker Ottorina Bonaventura transitioned to a limited continuous search strategy involving local ground searchers and an investigations unit.
Initial search activities began on Monday, July 30, 2007. A full-scale search was in place by Tuesday, July 31, 2007.
Nearly 150 searchers from all over the state joined National Park Service staff in the search effort. The search area included over 100 square miles of rugged wilderness terrain ranging in elevation from 8,000 to over 10,000 feet above sea level. Exposed granite outcroppings, high altitude, heavy timber, and steep terrain were some of the conditions faced by searchers. Additionally, afternoon thunderstorms, high winds, and cold conditions were major safety concerns for search managers and personnel. Safety has been of primary concern throughout the search incident.
The change in search strategy came after a careful review of continuing risk exposure against the probability of locating Ottorina Bonaventura. Ground searchers, dogs, and aerial flights have extensively covered the area of and radiating out from the location where Bonaventura was last seen.
Yosemite National Park continues to investigate this incident. Anyone with information or questions should contact the Yosemite National Park Media Relations Office at 209/372-0529.