Streamside photos in the Rocky Mountains definitely are photogenic, but the footing can be tricky, as an Oklahoma woman learned Monday after falling into a snowmelt-filled stream in Rocky Mountain National Park.
The unnamed 54-year-old from Enid, Oklahoma, was posing for a picture next to Glacier Creek late Monday morning when she slipped and fell and was swept 15 to 20 yards downstream before she was able to pull herself up on a rock and hold on to a shrub. Her husband drove to Moraine Park Visitor Center to get help.
Park rangers were on scene at 12:15 p.m.. and were able to use a rope to get a life jacket, helmet and additional clothing to the victim. Estes Park Dive Rescue and Estes Park Volunteer Fire Department along with Estes Park Ambulance assisted park rangers. Dive Rescue deployed an inflatable boat to reach the victim and assist her to dry land.
Bear Lake Road was closed, between Hollowell Park and Park and Ride, for almost an hour due to the incident.
The woman suffered from hypothermia and a broken wrist and was taken by ambulance to Estes Park Medical Center.
Park officials warn that mountain streams can be dangerous, especially after all of the spring runoff and continued moisture in the park. Visitors are reminded to remain back from the banks of streams and rivers and provide proper supervision for children, who by nature, tend to be attracted to water. Rocks at streamside and in the stream are often slippery and water beneath them may be deep. Powerful currents can quickly pull a person underwater.