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Heat Suspected in Death of Woman at Grand Canyon

Heat Suspected in Death of Woman at Grand Canyon
June 21
14:28 2021

Heat Related Death Suspected at Grand Canyon

On Sunday June 20 at approximately 1:15 p.m., the Grand Canyon Regional Communications Center received a report of a backpacker experiencing heat illness on the Tonto Trail near Monument Creek.

The backpacker, Michelle Meder, 53, of Hudson, Ohio was on a multi-day backpacking trip from the Hermit to Bright Angel Trail.

Hiking down the Hermit Trail on June 19, she became disoriented and later unconscious. On June 20, responding rangers determined Meder to be deceased; the cause of death is believed to be heat-related.

On June 20 the high temperature at Phantom Ranch was approximately 115°F (46°C).

The Coconino County Medical Examiner is investigating an exact cause of death. 

Grand Canyon Park rangers strongly recommend to not hike in the inner canyon between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. and to be prepared for the excessively hot days in the coming weeks.

The NPS encourages hikers to recreate responsibly and visitors should evaluate their level of experience and plan accordingly.

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Featured Photo: NPS, Tonto Trail

Heat Suspected in Death of Woman at Grand Canyon - overview

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