Over the summer, a death was reported in a Yellowstone National Park hot spring. Details surrounding the death at the park were very sparse; the media only reported that the victim was an Oregon man who had fallen into a thermal feature in an off-limits area of Yellowstone. Today, new details are emerging regarding the June 7 Yellowstone National Park death, and they are incredibly disturbing.
Man Dissolved in Acidic Water After Trying to Soak in Yellowstone National Park Hot Poolhttps://t.co/n8NtVgVx2q
— Ty Brown (@tydbrown18) November 17, 2016
As KULR 8 reports, the man who died at Yellowstone over the summer has been identified as Colin Scott a 23-year-old from Portland. His death reportedly took place at the Norris Geyser basin area of Yellowstone National park, an area that is marked as being off limits and even secured with a closure to keep people on the appropriate path and away from what is known to be an incredibly dangerous area of the park.
“There’s a closure in place to keep people from doing that for their own safety and also to protect the resources because they are very fragile. But, most importantly for the safety of people because it’s a very unforgiving environment.”
According to a new accident report, which is said to be the final report from Yellowstone National Park officials (the media obtained the final report via a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request) regarding the deadly incident, the young man’s tragic death was actually caught on video. When Scott ventured into the Norris Geyser basin area of the park, he was with his sister, Sable Scott. She recorded their adventure, included Colin’s final moments, on her cell phone.
Officials say that Colin and Sable Scott left the marked trail and trespassed into the off-limits area of Yellowstone National Park in an attempt to find a place where they could “hot pot” in one of the hot springs. Hot potting is the act of soaking/swimming in natural hot springs and thermal features. Unfortunately for the Scotts, they had chosen an area of Yellowstone National Park fraught with extremely hot, acidic hot springs and thermal vents.
@AP When will people learn that nature beats man every single time in the man vs nature fight??
— trishnavar (@trishnavar) November 15, 2016
@AP How horrible for his sister to witness. When will people learn to heed warnings? This means you! They should let visitors see video.
— Judith Cottrill (@spikiitty) November 16, 2016
@AP Very sad. We all have made stupid mistakes, its a shame he didn't get a 2nd chance.
— Warren Robinett (@Robinett777) November 15, 2016
Reportedly, the siblings walked a couple hundred feet uphill after they left the path near Pork Chop Geyser. Their hike took them further into the forbidden Norris Geyser basin area of Yellowstone.
Officials say that what happened next, an event caught on tape, was so horrific that the have refused to release the video or even a written description of the events captured by the cellphone camera. The official report is also full of redacted areas, portions that have been blacked out to protect the family of the victim and out of sensitivity to their feelings in the aftermath of the unspeakably shocking Yellowstone National Park Death.
The official report states that the victim’s sister told investigators that Colin Scott had reached down to test the water temperature of a thermal feature when he slipped, falling into the super-heated, acidic water. When first responders arrived back at the scene, they found the victim’s body and personal effects in the hot spring, but were unable to proceed with their recovery efforts due to inclement weather.
— Best Travel Book (@besttravelbook) November 12, 2016
When a recovery team came back the next day, all traces of the victim’s remains were gone, presumably dissolved in the hot, churning, acidic water of the Yellowstone thermal feature.
“In a very short order, there was a significant amount of dissolving.”
In the aftermath of the tragic, gruesome Yellowstone National Park death, park officials took the opportunity to remind the public to heed the safety warnings that are liberally posted all over the park.
“… because it is wild and it hasn’t been overly altered by people to make things a whole lot safer, it’s got dangers. And a place like Yellowstone which is set aside because of the incredible geothermal resources that are here, all the more so.”
— Jacques L. Chabot (@chabot4me) November 17, 2016
As Oregon Live reports, this summer’s Yellowstone National Park death wasn’t the first to happen in the park as a result of the area’s thermal features, and it’s unlikely to be the last. Despite being almost hypnotically beautiful in many cases, many of Yellowstone’s hot springs reach deadly temperatures – up to 205 degrees Fahrenheit. Hot enough to kill in moments; those who survived plunging into the super-heated pools have suffered incredibly severe injuries, including second and third-degree burns and even permanent blindness from being scorched.
In all, 22 deaths since 1890 have been attributed to Yellowstone National Park’s thermal features, making the hot springs more deadly than lightening strikes or even the park’s infamous grizzlies.
Despite the fact that Colin and Sable Scott deliberately left the marked trail and trespassed into a marked, off-limits area of the Norris Geyser basin area, no charges were filed in connection to this summer’s Yellowstone National Park death.
[Featured Image by Lane V. Erickson/Shutterstock]