Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Grand Canyon News

Ten people died below the rim of the Grand Canyon in 2009. The deaths were caused by dehydration, falls, drownings and heart attacks. There were more deaths on the rim including suicides.

One of the saddest to read was the death of a 20 year old University student. Without a permit or fellow backpackers, in temperatures over 100 degrees, he got lost, made some bad decisions and ended up in a position where he couldn't descend and couldn't climb back up from where he came. He knew it was the end. He left text messages on his phone for his family.

Thus far in 2010 there have been some rescues and one death. Following are news articles about the two most recent rescues.

Two hikers behind schedule are rescued. These guys were in the Royal Arch area where we did our trip three weeks ago. They were at least four days behind schedule. The going was much slower than I anticipated which is why we kept going one day until almost 10 PM.

Man injured in a rock slide.This is the first guy's version of the experience.

Second man injured in a rock slide.This is the second guy's version of the experience.

I never worry about heat, water, getting lost, snakes or various other concerns. These dangers can be minimized with planning and caution. My only concern is falling because it can happen so quickly and unexpectedly. Week before last I fell once near the top of Point Huitzil. We were in a loose area where three sections of the trail has been eradicated by minor slides. I stepped on a large boulder to get secure footing and the boulder split into two pieces. I rolled to my right and landed on my backpack. A minor fall. My main concern was my son who was a few steps behind me with half a boulder rolling his way. He was avoiding it and trying to get to me.

In spite of some risk, I can't wait to go again.


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