Search for missing skier suspended indefinitely

Missing skier Monty Busbee

SNOQUALMIE PASS, Wash. - The search for a missing backcountry skier has been suspended due to dangerous conditions and may not resume until Saturday, search-and-rescue officials said.

It's already been four days since 43-year-old Monty Busbee of Maple Valley went missing near Snoqualmie Pass. And it could be three or four more days until the conditions moderate enough to allow the search to continue.

The search for Busbee was put on hold Tuesday because of heavy snow and unstable weather conditions. And with more snow on the way, the King County Sheriff's Office says the avalanche danger remains too high.

Busbee's girlfriend called police around 7:45 p.m. Saturday when he didn't return home, and didn't answer his cell phone, a spokesman for King County Search and Rescue said.

Busbee is known to ski until darkness, and his truck was still parked at the Lower Summit West parking lot when rescue teams began their search. The Ski Patrol Avalanche Rescue Team ultimately had to suspend their search Saturday night due to heavy snow fall and dangerous conditions.

Family and friends say Busbee is an avid backcountry skier who is familiar with the area where he disappeared. He is known to carry a backpack with survival supplies and an avalanche beacon, though searchers would have to be rather close to pick up that signal.

Anyone who may have seen or spoke to Busbee is asked to call 911.

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