Canyoneer Dies After Getting Stuck on Rock Ledge 260 Feet Above Ground

A 31-year-old canyoneer died in Zion National Park after rescuers found him suspended 260 feet above the ground.

Park rangers said two canyoneers were stranded on a rock perch 280 feet above the Upper Emerald Pools on Nov. 27.

Another canyoneer was suspended from a rope.

That canyoneer, identified as 31-year-old Andrew Arvig from Chesapeake, Virginia, had rappelled past a small ledge to re-anchor his rope and rappel to the ground.

“The other members of the group used their ‘pull line’ to rappel to the perch,” rangers said. “Arvig was unable to ascend the 20 feet back to the perch.”

The canyoneers were stranded on the ledge. They tried to call emergency dispatch several times. After multiple failed attempts due to “poor reception,” a call went through and rangers began their rescue.

Arvig was lowered to the ground and pronounced dead by a doctor later on, rangers said. Park rangers did not say how he died. The cause of death is under investigation.

The two other canyoneers rappelled to the ground safely with the help of a search and rescue team, rangers said.

This story was originally published November 30, 2021 6:17 AM.

Maddie Capron is a McClatchy Real-Time News Reporter focused on the outdoors and wildlife in the western U.S. She graduated from Ohio University and previously worked at CNN, the Idaho Statesman and Ohio Center for Investigative Journalism.

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