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Palo Alto Woman Dies After Plunging 75 Feet in National Forest in Arizona

Carol Hyde, 53, was hiking with her husband and 13-year-old daughter when she fell from a sandstone arch called Devil's Bridge near Sedona.

Devils Bridge, off Dry Creek Road, near Sedona AZ. (Wikimedia.)
Devils Bridge, off Dry Creek Road, near Sedona AZ. (Wikimedia.)
A 53-year-old Palo Alto woman died from injuries she suffered after falling 75 feet while hiking with her family on April 2 near Sedona, Ariz., according to the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office.
  
Carol Hyde had traversed up a trail with her husband and 13-year-old daughter to the popular hiking destination Devil's Bridge about four miles northwest of Sedona, according to sheriff's spokesman Dwight D'Evelyn.

Devil's Bridge is a 50-foot-high, natural sandstone arch in the Coconino National Forest, 42 miles south of Flagstaff, according to the U.S. Forest Service's website.

As her daughter was standing further out on the bridge, Hyde was walking toward her husband, who was taking photos, when she fell, D'Evelyn said.

The woman plunged 75 feet to the rocks below the bridge, according to Sedona Fire District spokesman Gary Johnson.

The fire district responded to a call about the accident at around 12:30 p.m. that day and upon arrival, a rescue crew determined Hyde had sustained potentially life-threatening injuries, Johnson said.

Emergency responders treated her at the scene, then placed her in a stretcher and carried her almost three-fourths of a mile through the remote area to an awaiting off-road vehicle, Johnson said.

They then transferred her to a ground ambulance that drove her to Flagstaff Medical Center in Flagstaff, where Hyde later passed away.

The fire department usually transports people with life-threatening injuries in off-road areas by air ambulance to local hospitals, Johnson said.

But on April 2, winds were blowing at 20 mph with gusts reaching 35 mph and authorities decided it was too dangerous to fly, he said.

Few hikers have had to be rescued from Devil's Bridge over the years and most of the rescues in the area involve hikers who get lost or are injured while walking on nearby trails, D'Evelyn said.

-- Bay City News

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