69-year-old Texas man dies while hiking near the bottom of Grand Canyon

Jul 1, 2024, 1:16 PM

A view of the River Trail, which runs along the edge of a cliff above the Colorado River in Grand C...

A man died June 29, 2024, while hiking on the River Trail, which runs along the edge of a cliff above the Colorado River in Grand Canyon National Park. (National Park Service Photo)

(National Park Service Photo)

PHOENIX – A 69-year-old Texas man died while hiking near the bottom of the Grand Canyon over the weekend, authorities announced Monday.

Scott Sims of Austin was trying to reach Phantom Ranch via the South Kaibab Trail for an overnight stay when he started losing consciousness, according to Grand Canyon National Park officials.

Grand Canyon Regional Communications Center learned of a semi-conscious hiker on the River Trail, about halfway between the Silver Bridge and Black Bridge, around 7 p.m. Saturday.

Soon after National Park Service paramedics reached the scene, Sims became unresponsive. Bystanders and paramedics performed CPR, but they could not resuscitate the hiker.

National Park Service and Coconino County Medical Examiner are investigating the incident.

Why hiking Grand Canyon can be dangerous in summer heat

Park officials have issued warnings about the dangers of hiking in the Grand Canyon during periods of extreme heat.

Rangers advise against hiking in the inner canyon between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. during the summer, when temperatures can reach over 120 degrees in the shade on exposed trails.

Additionally, rescue efforts can take longer during the summer due to limited staff, the number of calls and employee safety requirements, according to park officials. Also, helicopters could be unable to fly during periods of extreme heat or inclement weather.

Saturday’s Grand Canyon hiking death occurred two weeks after a 41-year-old man died after becoming unresponsive on the park’s Bright Angel Trail.

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69-year-old Texas man dies while hiking near the bottom of Grand Canyon