‘Don’t risk it’: Grand Canyon officials share photo of hikers on steep, icy trail

Posted at 6:14 AM, Nov 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-27 06:14:22-05

GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK, Ariz. – The Grand Canyon shared a photo of two hikers sliding down a frozen switchback trail to warn visitors as snow and ice create hazardous conditions.

“The top part of Grand Canyon trails are icy!” Grand Canyon NPS tweeted Monday, sharing the photo of the ill-prepared visitors. “Don’t risk it – like these folks.”

Neither of the two people pictured appear to have any shoe traction device or trekking poles, and one, seen holding onto the snow-covered rocks for support, is in shorts and tennis shoes.

The photo was actually taken three years ago, according to Lily Daniels, a spokesperson with Grand Canyon National Park, and gets re-shared each year when the snow starts to fall.

“Yesterday the conditions were similar to those in the photo,” Daniels said. “It can be slippery in the snow, there can be ice. We try to educate people to wear cramp-ons and use trekking poles.”

Daniels said some people travel to the Grand Canyon under the misconception that the climate is hot desert all year round.

Seventeen people died in Grand Canyon National Park in 2018, Daniels said. Nine of those deaths were search and rescue related.

The park is bracing for a major Thanksgiving storm that is expected to arrive late Wednesday.