If you've ever driven through the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area, which straddles the Wyoming-Montana border, you know how serpentine that road can be and how deep the drop-off is. After all, it's called a "canyon" for good reason.
Well, turns out that the other night -- it was May 24th to be exact -- a couple stopped to admire the view shortly before midnight and while they went one way their rig went the other. And then it fell off the side of the road and plunged an estimated 700 feet into the canyon.
While the couple technically was inside the canyon when this mishap occurred, they were actually outside the NRA on Crow Indian Reservation land. Sure enough, the hybrid Ford Escape was found inside the reservation and outside the NRA.
Nevertheless Bighorn Canyon rangers and resource management staff traveled to the location by boat the next day to survey the scene. They found the vehicle’s debris scattered over a wide area, but determined that none of it was on park land.
Concern was raised, however, about leaking fluids and hybrid batteries still on site. Park staff will continue to monitor the area for any resource impacts, since the site is close to the park boundary, and will also assist the tribe.
According to an investigation, the SUV reportedly began rolling toward the edge of the canyon rim after its two occupants got out to look around. They attempted to stop it by holding onto its bumper, but were unsuccessful in keeping the SUV from going over the edge. They reported that the parking brake had failed.