Rockfall Kills 1 Person At Yosemite National Park

29 September, 2017, 00:25 | Author: Gregory Stephens
  • Yosemite National Park

The rocks appeared to have fallen from an area near the popular "Waterfall Route" climbing trail during an active time for hiking in the popular national park. "This is the area where Horsetail Fall flows in winter and spring conditions", the NPS said.

John DeGrazio, a wilderness guide in Yosemite, said the hiking group he was leading had stopped to take pictures on the summit of Half Dome, another famous monolith in Yosemite, when they saw a "huge plume of smoke" come from El Capitan.

He estimates 30 or more climbers were on the wall at the time, but he could not confirm injuries or the size of the rock fall.

Park rangers and search and rescue personnel visited the scene, using a helicopter to assess the damage.

"I've never seen anything like that", Zabrok told NBC News. As a result, one person has been confirmed dead, while another has been injured.

Sixteen people have been killed and more than 100 people have been hurt by rockfalls since park records began in 1857.


He said Wednesday he did not know who was killed and injured and did not immediately respond Thursday to phone and email messages seeking updated information.

There were 58 rockfalls in Yosemite in 2016, which was slightly lower than in previous years, according to the National Park Service. The injured victim was transported out of Yosemite to receive medical treatment.

It was not clear whether the two victims were climbers or tourists at the site during the height of the climbing season.

A visitor to Yosemite National Park was killed Wednesday after being hit by a chunk of rock falling from El Capitan.

He has tried to reduce the hazard of rockfalls by moving buildings and places where hikers congregate away from cliffs from which rocks might tumble, according to the Smithsonian.

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