A 13-year-old boy falls 98-feet into the Grand Canyon

In the United States, a boy suffered an incredible fall into the Grand Canyon. He fell some 98 feet.

13-year-old boy falls Grand Canyon USA travel
© Sonaal Bangera / Unsplash
13-year-old boy falls Grand Canyon USA travel

The Grand Canyon is a must-see tourist destination in the USA, welcoming millions of visitors every year to admire the splendid panoramas of this natural formation. However, care must be taken when climbing to the top of these cliffs, as there is a real risk of falling (a dozen people die every year). In 2023, a teenager fell some 90 feet during a visit.

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A boy clings to a rock and falls

The fall took place at Bright Angel Point trail, which offers a superb panoramic view of the Grand Canyon. Accessible after a 30-minute climb, this spot is described by the National Park Service as follows:

This narrow, paved trail offers spectacular views, although it drops considerably on both sides in places, and some sections are surprisingly steep.

Naturally, the trail attracts many tourists, who come to take photos of the canyon. While at Bright Angel Point with his parents, Wyatt Kauffman, a 13-year-old from North Dakota, stepped aside to let two visitors take pictures.

He recounts:

I was on the ledge and was moving aside so that other people could take a photo. I crouched down and held on to a rock. I only had one hand on it.

Unfortunately, his grip wasn't firm enough, and the young boy fell 98 feet into the Grand Canyon.

He miraculously survived

Emergency services were immediately called. In a statement, the National Park Service said:

"After determining that a helicopter rescue was not possible, SAR team members quickly set up a lifeline and were able to hoist him safely to the water's edge. The boy was airlifted to a pediatric trauma center for treatment.

Miraculously, the boy survived his fall. However, doctors diagnosed him with nine broken vertebrae, a ruptured spleen, a collapsed lung, a concussion, a broken hand and a dislocated finger. At the time of the story, his condition was reported as stable and no further details have since been released.

This article has been translated from Gentside FR.

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Sources used:

National Park Service: Bright Angel Point Trail

The Guardian: Boy, 13, survives after falling 100ft from Grand Canyon’s north rim

National Park Service: 13 year-old boy rescued after falling over the edge on the North Rim

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