Search for missing snowboarder scaled back 

The search for a Japanese snowboarder missing since last Thursday has been scaled back.

It will continue today but will rely on dog team searches and local personnel.

Since the search was started for the 25-year-old language student on Sunday more than 40 Search and Rescue workers have combed Blackcomb Mountain. Ten dog teams have been used along with the most up-to-date technology and aerial searches by helicopters.

Ai Ito was last seen Thursday mid-morning as she headed up 7 th Heaven for a solo run.

The International House language student was reported missing Sunday by her home-stay family.

RCMP said it was common for Ito to stay overnight with friends in explaining why it took so long for Ito to be reported as missing.

Ito’s family is now in Whistler helping with the search.

With over 60 centimetres of fresh snow in the last several days and temperatures dipping to -15 overnight on the mountain there is little hope that Ito is still alive if she went missing on Blackcomb.

She is described as a slim, about five feet tall with dark brown hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing a white snowboarding jacket, teal coloured snowboard pants and possibly a green toque. Anyone with information is asked to call the RCMP at 604 932 3044.

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