Fatality near Odessa Lake at Rocky Mountain National Park
Contact: Kyle Patterson, 970-586-1363
At 12:30 p.m. today, September 4, 2009, a 62-year-old woman from Boulder, Colorado, fell between 25 to 50 feet on the Fern Lake Trail near Odessa Lake, landing in a creek. Other hikers contacted park dispatch by cell phone about the incident around 1:00 p.m. but it was unclear from initial cell phone calls as to where the incident occurred and the extent of injuries. A hasty team of two rangers left the Fern Lake Trailhead at 1:56 p.m. The hasty team traveled roughly 5.5 miles reaching the patient near Odessa Lake at 3:41 p.m. It is unclear how long the victim was in the water. As more calls came in the location was determined and other rangers were dispatched from the Bear Lake Trailhead to the location, roughly 3.5 miles.
Upon the initial rangers’ arrival the victim was hypothermic and her level of consciousness had decreased. Other rangers began to arrive on scene. CPR was initiated and performed at 4:56 p.m. for over an hour. Cardiac medications were administered and an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) was used. She was pronounced dead at 5:56 p.m. The body recovery is ongoing and next of kin are being contacted. She was hiking with a friend.
The Larimer County Coroner’s office will determine cause of death. Twenty-two people were involved in the field, including a team from Larimer County Search and Rescue.
Did You Know?
The oldest person to summit Longs Peak was Rev. William Butler, who climbed it on September 2, 1926, his 85th birthday. In 1932, Clerin “Zumie” Zumwalt summited Longs Peak 53 times.