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Body of man recovered from remote area of Grand Canyon identified

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avatar Grand Canyon Park Rangers Recover Body
September 29, 2010 04:33PM
Grand Canyon, Ariz. – Park rangers recovered the body of a man from a remote area in the Toroweap/Tuweep area on the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. The National Park Service (NPS) received a call last night at approximately 6:00 p.m. from an NPS volunteer at Tuweep who had received a report of a deceased hiker near the Lava Falls Route.

Five male hikers started what was to be a day hike to the river on the Lava Falls Route, a rugged remote route near Tuweep, Arizona. Initial investigations indicate that one hiker began to feel fatigued and was running low on water so turned around to hike out. He was last seen by his friends at approximately 9:00 yesterday morning. The four other hikers continued their hike, but then later separated – two decided to camp near the Colorado River last night, the other two hiked out yesterday afternoon. During the course of hiking out the two hikers came upon the body of their friend, who had left the group earlier in the day, on a point approximately 100 yards from a parking lot adjacent to where the route begins.

With darkness approaching park rangers were not able to respond by helicopter and instead drove to the remote location, approximately 3.5 hours from the North Rim developed area.

Park rangers began a search at first light this morning and located the body shortly after 7:00 a.m. His body will be transported by helicopter to the Kingman Airport in northwestern Arizona and transferred to the Mohave County Medical Examiner who will help determine cause of death.

As with all fatalities that occur within the park, an investigation will be completed by the National Park Service.

The victim's name is being withheld, pending positive identification and notification of next-of-kin.

Park rangers urge hikers, especially when hiking in remote areas of the park, to be aware of the hazards that exist and to go prepared. The Lava Falls Route is one of the hottest, steepest routes within Grand Canyon National Park. It is can be dangerous and is not a hike that is recommended during hotter times of the year. Hiking information, including trail conditions and weather, can be obtained on the park's Web site at http://www.nps.gov/grca/planyourvisit/backcountry.htm, at one of the park's Backcountry Information Center's or by calling 928-638-7875.
avatar Body of man recovered from remote area of Grand Canyon identified
September 30, 2010 02:44PM
Body of man recovered from remote area of Grand Canyon identified
Date: September 30, 2010
Contact: Maureen Oltrogge, 928-638-7779

Grand Canyon, Ariz. – The body of a man recovered from a remote area within Grand Canyon National Park has been identified as that of 30-year-old Gavin C. Smith, of Lawrence Kansas.

He and four others were on what was to be a day hike to the river on the Lava Falls Route, a remote route near Tuweep in the Toroweap Valley, approximately 3.5 hours from the developed area on the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. Initial investigations indicate that Mr. Smith hiked approximately one-half of the way down to the river and then decided to wait for his companions to descend to the river and come back to his location. He was last seen by his friends at approximately 9:00 Tuesday morning.

Mr. Smith's body was found by one of his hiking companions late Tuesday afternoon, approximately 100 yards from a parking area adjacent to where the route begins. His hiking companion reported the incident to a National Park Service volunteer located at Tuweep.

Park rangers recovered his body yesterday morning. His body was flown to Kingman, Arizona and transferred to the Mohave County Medical Examiner. Initial indications are that Mr. Smith's death was heat related.

Park rangers urge hikers, especially when hiking in remote areas of the park, to be aware of the hazards that exist and to go prepared. The Lava Falls Route is one of the hottest, steepest routes within Grand Canyon National Park. It is can be dangerous and is not a hike that is recommended during hotter times of the year. Hiking information, including trail conditions and weather, can be obtained on the park's Web site at http://www.nps.gov/grca/planyourvisit/backcountry.htm, at one of the park's Backcountry Information Center's or by calling 928-638-7875.
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