Yellowstone National Park is an amazing, wild expanse of nature at its finest. The enormous national park sits on over 28,000 square miles and while it’s beautiful, it’s not a playground. Dangers are plentiful, and you have to be aware of every step you take. Here is a roundup of some of the unfortunate situations people have found themselves in that led to their sad demise.
1. Burned to death in a hot spring
In the 1980s, a man jumped into a hot spring named Celestine Pool in an attempt to rescue his friend’s dog who had hopped in and started yelping. Unfortunately for David Kirwan, the temperature of the spring is known to reach over 200 degrees, and he suffered severe burns over 100 percent of his body. He perished at a local hospital the next day.
2. Killed by a bear
Getting killed by a bear isn’t a super common experience, but it has unfortunately happened in Yellowstone more than once. In 1972, a man was attacked and killed when he returned to his illegally-established camp at night. He encountered an older female grizzly bear who was munching on food he had failed to properly secure. Unhappily for him, he surprised the bear and it ended badly for him.
3. Drowned in a river
In 2009, a woman drowned in a river in Yellowstone’s backcountry. She had been camping in an area not easily accessible, and after her friend discovered her not breathing and in the water, she had to run five miles to seek help. Unfortunately, she was declared dead at the scene by the time help arrived.
4. Fell off a cliff
Mr. and Mrs. Earl J. Dunn, from Minneapolis, were visiting the park in the 1920s when an ill-fated attempt to turn their vehicle around after a visit to the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. Their car slid off backwards, where the couple careened to their death 1,000 feet below.
5. Overcome by gases
In 1939, Bill Nelson was a new park employee who was put to work digging a pit to aid in the construction of a road or a bridge. He helped lower a co-worker into the pit who was overcome by hydrogen sulfide gas. In an attempt to rescue his co-worker, Nelson too became overwhelmed and fell head-first into the pit. It took a bit to rescue him, and he never recovered.