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Found this on Park Website. Sad news.
I guess I only got the picture and not news release.
Today at 2:12 pm, we received a report of a flipped motorboat at Bedrock Rapid. One fatality confirmed; SAR is underway to treat and transport injured patients. Incident is ongoing; no further information is available.
PC: Ron Chapple Photography.
 

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That rapid has always given me the heebie jeebies, and watching the way a big motor rig has to set up to run it didn't help. It always looked like it wouldn't take much for something to go wrong with potentially major consequences. My condolences to all involved in this tragic even.
 

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How long would it take to notify next of kin. My husband is on a Colorado River Grand Canyon rafting trip right now. Told me he wouldn’t be able to talk to me for 8 days because no reception in Canyon. I don’t even know what company he used. Motorized vs non-motorized raft.. just that it’s 8 days and 279 miles. Any thoughts? He flew out Thursday and started on river Friday.
 

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lol
Talked to a friend who still guides down there. He said it was Western River Expeditions
It would be relatively timely. The commercial trip would have satellite communication and the NPS and local law enforcement would be involved quickly.
Thank you. That’s what I keep telling myself. I finally figured out how to sign onto his email … but he already deleted all the rafting trip emails.
 

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How long would it take to notify next of kin. My husband is on a Colorado River Grand Canyon rafting trip right now. Told me he wouldn’t be able to talk to me for 8 days because no reception in Canyon. I don’t even know what company he used. Motorized vs non-motorized raft.. just that it’s 8 days and 279 miles. Any thoughts? He flew out Thursday and started on river Friday.
If he launched on Friday there is zero chance that he is involved as that part of the river would likely be day four or day five of a motorized trip.
 

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From the GCPBA:

One Fatality and Multiple Injured on Colorado River Trip, At Bedrock Rapid

GRAND CANYON, Ariz.
-On Saturday, September 10 at approximately 2:12 p.m., Grand Canyon National Park was alerted to a flipped boat with injuries from a river trip near Bedrock Rapid on the Colorado River. The Grand Canyon Regional Communications Center then received a report that CPR was in progress.

Ronald Vanderlugt, 67, entered the river at Bedrock Rapid, Colorado River mile 131. Members of the group pulled him out of the water, noted he was unresponsive, and began CPR. Park rangers were flown into the location with the park helicopter and all resuscitation efforts were unsuccessful. An additional four patients in non-critical condition were treated and flown to the South Rim Helibase. Vanderlugt was on day five of a multi-day commercial river trip.

An investigation into the incident is being conducted by the National Park Service and the Coconino County Medical Examiner. No further information is available at this time.
 

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Bedrock is definitely a high consequence rapid requiring dramatic effort for rowers. Our group had someone not make the move last year, but we were lucky in the end. Seems surprising the motor rig did not make it. They typically seem to put a lot of care in setting up for Bedrock. But what the photos do not show, is the lower the water is just how much more difficult it is to fit down the right side. I have heard its not possible for motors at extreme low flows.
 

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And those are the most unsafe designed motor rigs on the Grand Canyon they are super top-heavy with no lower weight at all. I don’t wanna speculate what happened but with those boats there is very little room for error. That is one of the last places on the grand that I would ever want to be swimming I have heard many stories of deep adventures.
 

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I just got off the Grand, the water is chocolate milk. I bounced the bottom rock in the shallows, did 360 and just made it. My least favorite rapid.
Sounds to me like you were talking about the rock they call ‘pinky’ down past the rock in the little eddy on the right which unless you’re in a motor rig is not gonna hurt anything.

That is a super easy rapid to cheat and the way I run it every time. I have done laps around the rock in a kayak and I also had some super scary adventures over on the backside. I know for sure that a 37 foot motor rig has been down the left side at Highwater.
 

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Andddddd once the water stops flowing down there and/or debris flows add to the riverbed, Bedrock will be #1 rapid to shut down that river to large motor boat traffic. Waltenberg will be #2. That being said, can’t wait till motor rigs can’t make it. The Canyon will be sighing in relief.
I think Duebendorf is in the running for #2 as well... its already borderline at 8k for motor rigs and killing lower units. I've always said that Bedrock is one good flash event away from going from a rapid that needs to respect to being majorly serious rapid. It is definitely my least favorite rapid in the canyon just because its all the stress with no payoff.

Kinda crazy how many of these big motor rigs are having incidents lately. I'm sure the lower water levels are playing a part...but it seems like some negligence is playing a big part too. I'm not saying this incident was...could have just been unlucky and had a motor konk out at an inopportune time or something... but I had only heard of a few incidents happening before 2020 and there have been at least 3-4 in the last year or two. It

Sorry to hear about the gentleman who passed and the other customers that got hurt.
 

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Andddddd once the water stops flowing down there and/or debris flows add to the riverbed, Bedrock will be #1 rapid to shut down that river to large motor boat traffic. Waltenberg will be #2. That being said, can’t wait till motor rigs can’t make it. The Canyon will be sighing in relief.
when we were down there in June i talked with a western guide at deer creek about what would end up happening when the only run at bedrock will be the left run. she told me there was a boat last year that ended up on the left and said it was a very ugly lucky run.

when the left run is the only run, I think it will change the equation for a lot of the folks that rent rigs and send it. as most of us Know the grand is really a big class 3+ river and the major obstacle is the 2 weeks of hot desert camping. the private boating community in the grand has a ton of completely green boaters (look at the facebook grand canyon communities).with a major obstacle like running left or lining boats it might push some of these folks into commercial trips or away from the "send it" attitude...

sending positive vibes to those who lost a loved one and those on the trip that were a part of this.
 
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