Two bodies were recovered at Yosemite National Park’s Taft Point. National Park rangers found the body of a man and a woman who possibly fell to their deaths. The bodies were found early Thursday morning; only a few details have been released of the incident. Rangers are still investigating the situation.
Taft Point is a point of interest along a hiking trail. The trail traverses 2.2 miles through Glacier Point Road. The park advises hikers to “watch your step” while gazing the Yosemite Valley. Mishaps and injuries frequently happen in Yosemite Park. Many visitors are so busy gawking at the splendor of the Valley; they are not watching where they’re going.
Authorities said they found the bodies in rough terrain and it was a challenging recovery. The bodies are still not identified. “This incident is under investigation, and no further details are available,” spokesman Scott Gediman said in a statement.
A strange coincidence
It was only a week ago when Matt Dippel, a freelance photographer, captured a candid photo of a man proposing to a woman on the same cliff. The image went viral.
The proposal couple appeared to be off in the distance; however, Dippel said it was only a two-minute walk. The couple was already gone by the time he reached the cliff. “I ran over to that point after I took the photo to try to figure out who there were and I asked maybe 20 or 25 people and no one came forward.”
“It’s a super-popular place in Yosemite. Really popular for engagements, proposals, weddings,” said Dippel. “There were at least three or four different brides and grooms up there doing their post-wedding photos, so it’s definitely not an uncommon thing to see up there.” Dippel turned to social media in efforts to find the proposal couple.
“Alright Internet I need your help. Help me find these two,” he wrote. “This was taken at Taft Point, in Yosemite National Park on October 6th, 2018. I took this photo and would love for them to find it.”
Dippel’s post was shared thousands of times, and he is still looking for the couple.
Taft Point is no stranger to tragic hikes. A hiker died at Half Dome in May. One month later, two climbers fatally fell off Yosemite’s Freeblast Route on El Capitan.
The evolution of selfies has played a part in a surge of tragic hikes. At least ten people have died at Yosemite in 2018. In September, a teenager from Israel plunged to his death in the popular park.
Err on the side of caution
In 2015, prominent wingsuit flier and his partner, Dean Potter, and Graham Hunt, tragically fell to their deaths after jumping from the cliff. Wingsuit flying is considered the most dangerous way of BASE jumping. BASE jumping stands for jumping off Buildings, Antennas, Spans (bridges) and Earth. The duo, clearly seasoned, died while aiming to clear a V-shaped notch in a ridgeline. Base jumping is illegal at Yosemite Park.
Investigators declared the casualties an accident. Even though there are videos and pictures of the leap, authorities have not concluded how Hunter and Porter died. Taft Point elevation reaches over 3,000 feet above the valley floor.