BRITISH campervan traveller Esther Dingley has been reported missing while on a solo hiking trip in the Pyrenees on the French-Spanish border.
The 37-year-old Durham native has been travelling the continent in their van since 2014 with her partner Dan Colegate, and the couples’ road adventures have been published by the BBC. The couple last spoke on WhatsApp last Sunday, while Dingley was atop Pic de Sauvegarde mountain. She’d taken their van on a month-long solo trip which was coming to an end, while Colegate stayed in Gascony, France.
According to Colegate, they had discussed ‘how excited we were to see each other as she was on her last trip before driving back’. On Saturday Dingley had walked from Benasque, Spain, and planned to spend Sunday night at Refuge Venasque, France. She was last seen at 16:00 GMT on Saturday, with Colegate saying there’d been ‘no sign at all’ of her since leaving him ‘broken’ and ‘shattered’. The couple has been on the road since Colegate almost died of an infection in 2014.
On Dingley’s previous solo travels ‘she always tried to keep in touch but sometimes on her hikes went out of contact for days’ said Colegate. He’s joined French police teams using helicopters and dogs to scour the area for the missing Brit as temperatures drop and light snowfall begins in the mountainous border region.
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