A 31-year-old woman on an overnight hike in Zion National Park’s the Narrows died Wednesday after her husband left her for help as temperatures dropped.
On Wednesday morning, shuttle drivers reported that visitors had encountered an injured man and an unresponsive woman in the Narrows section of the Utah park.
That Zion National Park Search and Rescue Team answered, finding the man on the paved Riverside Walk path.
He was then transported to the Zion Emergency Operations Center.
Further up the Narrows, others found the woman near the Virgin River.
The Narrows is the narrowest section of Zion Canyon, which the Park Service describes as a gorge with walls a thousand feet high.
While first responders administered first aid, they determined she was dead.
According to the Park Service, the 33-year-old man and 31-year-old woman — a married couple — had started their permitted 16-mile trip through the Narrows from top to bottom on Tuesday.
The man reported that they became dangerously cold overnight and experienced symptoms consistent with hypothermia.
Temperatures in the area reached below 20 degrees Fahrenheit late Tuesday night, according to the National Weather Service in Kanab.
Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Udah Office of the Medical Examiner and the National Park Service is still investigating the woman’s cause of death.
After stopping about a mile and a half from the north end of Riverside Walk, the man continued to get help early Wednesday while the woman stayed.
Park rangers found him there as other visitors helped him down the trail.
Several visitors further up the Narrows administered CPR to the woman before search and rescue members arrived.
“The National Park Service appreciates the efforts of these visitors,” the agency said in a statement.
The response involved more than 20 search and rescue team members.