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    Rocky Mountain

    National Park Colorado

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    Damages on Old Fall River Road are extensive and the road will remain closed to vehicles through 2014. It is unknown at this time whether hikers and bicyclists will be allowed on the road. More »

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Fatality near Odessa Lake at Rocky Mountain National Park

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Date: September 4, 2009
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?

a photo of treeline in Rocky Mountain National Park

If the current amount of total nitrogen deposition measured at the high-elevation monitoring site in Rocky Mountain National Park (3 kg/ha/yr) was the same throughout the park, the amount of airborne nitrogen entering the park would be equivalent to 35,500 twenty-pound bags of fertilizer. More...