Authorities have not been able to determine a cause of death for the man whose body was found along the banks of the Roaring Fork River on Saturday afternoon.
Pitkin County Coroner Eric Hansen said an autopsy was performed on Sunday but a cause of death couldn’t be determined pending toxicology tests, which could take up to three weeks. No identification has been determined either, Hansen said. No identification was found with the body, which was clothed in jeans and a blue hoodie sweatshirt.
At 1:23 p.m., the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office received a call from a fly fisherman reporting that he found a dead body near the Roaring Fork River approximately a quarter mile upstream of Wilton Jaffee Park. The area where the body was found is heavily wooded, with thick growth of trees and brush, approximately 25 feet from the river on the south side, about 100 yards below the intercept lot.
The remains indicate that the individual was a white male, between 50 and 60 years old, 5-foot-8-inches tall, and weighing about 240 pounds, said Pitkin County Sheriff investigator Brad Gibson. He had a full beard and mustache, and an inch and half of long wavy hair.
The body was turned over to the Pitkin County Coroner’s Office and removed from the scene with the help of Mountain Rescue Aspen and Blazing Adventures rafting company. A rafting guide and rescue crew members put in at Jaffee Park and paddled upstream to retrieve the body on Saturday evening.
When authorities arrived on scene, the man appeared to be lying on his side with his head rested on a pillow. The body was bloated and decomposing, leading authorities to believe it had been there for a few days but not weeks, Gibson said. He added that there were no other items at the scene that provided any additional information about the man’s identity. No missing person reports have been made to the sheriff’s office in the past several months.