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  • OutThere Colorado

    Out-of-state hiker dies amid extreme heat in Colorado

    By By Spencer McKee,


    A female hiker from Iowa recently died in western Colorado and extreme heat may have been a factor.

    According to authorities at Grand Junction-area Colorado National Monument, 54-year-old Marsha Cook, of Cedar Rapids, collapsed and lost consciousness while hiking on Lower Monument Canyon Trail on June 10 at about 2:30 p.m. She was about two miles up the trail at the time of the incident.

    Rescue crews responded to help, but were ultimately unsuccessful in saving Cook's life despite their efforts. Cook was pronounced dead at the scene.

    Information about Cook's official cause-of-death has not been publicly confirmed or released, though authorities did include a warning to the public about excessive heat in the area with their press release on her death.

    Authorities noted that hiking in hot weather can lead to serious health risks, including heat exhaustion and heat stroke, with daytime temperatures at Colorado National Monument exceeding 90 degrees Fahrenheit over recent days. Authorities recommended that hikers plan to be on the trail before 10 a.m. or after 4 p.m. It's also important to note that both water and electrolytes are crucial while hiking in hot weather – don't rely on drinking water , alone.

    Cook's official cause and manner of death remains under investigation.

    Condolences go out to those impacted by Cook's death.

    If you're interested in supporting Colorado's volunteer-powered search and rescue operation, one way to do so is through the purchase of a CORSAR card . It's cheap, at only $5 per year.

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