A 64-year-old woman collapsed and died on a trail at Big Bend National Park in Texas on Monday, becoming the second person to die at the popular park in just three weeks.
Rangers in the West Texas park’s communications center received a call for emergency assistance around 2:45 p.m. after the woman collapsed and was unresponsive on the Hot Springs Canyon Trail, according to the National Park Service.
A team of rangers and US Customs and Border Protection agents arrived at the scene around 3:30 p.m. and immediately began performing CPR on the woman. A CBP helicopter was called to transport the patient, but attempts to resuscitate her were unsuccessful, NPS said.
The Hot Springs Canyon Trail is a winding, three-mile loop through rough desert terrain on the cliffs above the Rio Grande River along the Mexico-US border.
No official cause of death has been announced, however, park officials said the trail is notable for lacking shade or access to water, making it a particularly dangerous hike on a hot afternoon.
“Big Bend National Park staff and our partners are saddened by this loss,” stated Acting Deputy Superintendent Rick Gupman in a statement. “While we can’t conclude that weather was a factor in this incident, March reminds us that the beauty of spring often brings dangerously hot temperatures to Big Bend. Our entire Big Bend family extends our deep condolences to the hiker’s family and friends.”
On Feb. 18, a 56-year-old man died of an apparent heart attack at the park while hiking with a scout troop, according to NPS.
He began experiencing chest pains around 1:15 p.m. on the park’s Pinnacles Trail.
Friends and bystanders performed CPR until rangers arrived with an automated external defibrillator. Despite their efforts, they were unable to revive the hiker.