Body of man, 19, is found in Catalina Mountains lake

2012-08-23T00:00:00Z Body of man, 19, is found in Catalina Mountains lakeVeronica M. Cruz and Jamar Younger Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

Search-and-rescue crews found the body of a 19-year-old man Wednesday afternoon who disappeared while swimming in Rose Canyon Lake the day before.

The body of Jacob Barlow, of Colorado City, Ariz., was found around 2:45 p.m. in the lake in the Santa Catalina Mountains, said Rick Kastigar, Pima County Sheriff's Department bureau chief.

Crews began a search for Barlow on Wednesday morning but had to wait for a break in the weather to take a boat out into the water and send divers into the lake, Kastigar said.

"This appears to be a drowning," Kastigar said, but officials are waiting for autopsy results to give an actual cause of death.

The Sheriff's Department received a 911 report that the man, who was at the lake with friends, started drowning and went underwater around 5:30 p.m. Tuesday. Divers could not go into the lake because of the murky water and decreasing daylight.

According to witnesses, Barlow slipped underwater while swimming across the lake.

"There were a couple of young men who decided to take the challenge to swim across the lake," Kastigar said. "And they decided to swim across the same direction, and one made it and one didn't."

The seven-acre lake was created in 1958 and is a popular fishing spot in a canyon at 7,000 feet. The Arizona Game and Fish Department regularly stocks the lake with rainbow trout.

At its deepest point, the lake drops to 31 feet, said Mark Hart, a Game and Fish spokesman.

The U.S. Forest Service has prohibited swimming and boating in the lake since 1985 because it is a small lake and its primary use is for fishing. Officials do not want any activities in the lake that would disturb the fish, said Mark Hart, a Game and Fish spokesman.

In June, the Forest Service started issuing special permits to allow non-motorized watercraft to be used by youth service organizations such as the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts for safety training and exercises, Hart said.

The lake was drained and dredged to remove debris and several thousand cubic yards of silt that had built up after a strong storm season in September 2001.

Contact reporter Veronica Cruz at vcruz@azstarnet.com or 573-4224.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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