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    Pictured Rocks

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Visitor Dies after fall next to Miners Falls

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Date: November 12, 2013
Contact: Bill R. Smith, 906-387-2607, ext. 205

(Munising, MICH.) A 24-year old Norway, Michigan, man has died after a fall of about 70 feet from the top of Miners Falls to the bottom. Franklin Carver Sade died at Munising Memorial Hospital as a result his injuries. The apparent accident occurred on Monday, November 11, at approximately 2:30 a.m.  Miners Falls is located within Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, about ten miles east of Munising.

Mr. Sade and Jordan McGuire were camping near the top of Miners Falls. Sade was obtaining campfire wood when the fall occurred.  After the fall, McGuire called 911 once he reached a location with cell service.

The steep, rough terrain and inclement weather conditions contributed to the difficulty of the rescue. Temperatures were below freezing, rocky surfaces were ice-covered, natural lighting was minimal, and the Miners River was higher than usual. Rescuers used an extension ladder to move Mr. Sade from the east side of the river to the west. Rescuers carried him up the steep hill to a waiting rescue vehicle. He was transported along the Miners Falls trail to a waiting ambulance. EMS employed advanced lifesaving techniques en route to the hospital.

Acting Chief Ranger Bill Smith noted there are no established campsites in or around the Miners Falls area. Alcohol may have been a factor in the incident. An autopsy will take place at Marquette General Hospital.  The case remains open pending further investigation.

National Park Service rangers at the scene were assisted by the Alger County Sheriff's Department, Alger County EMS, Alger County Rescue 21, Munising Township Fire Department, Eastern Upper Peninsula Search and Rescue, and Rock River Township Fire Department.


Did You Know?

Bear claw scars on the smooth bark of an American beech tree.

Bear claw marks can be seen on the trunks of American beech trees because the bark is so smooth. Bears climb trees for safety and to eat beech nuts. The non-native beech bark disease is sweeping through Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, killing many beech trees. Trees scarred with bear claw marks will be harder to find. More...