Woman dies falling into Grand Canyon while taking photos

Posted at 10:50 AM, Jul 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-05 11:50:26-04

A woman died falling into the Grand Canyon while taking photos on Friday, officials said.

Her body was recovered on Saturday 100 feet below the rim.

Maria Salgado Lopez, 59, of Scottsdale, Arizona, was with her family west of Mather Point on the South Rim while she was taking photos and accidentally stepped off the edge of the canyon, the national park said in a statement.

The woman was hiking off the designated path at the time, officials said.

"Grand Canyon National Park staff encourage all visitors to have a safe visit this holiday weekend by staying on designated trails and walkways, always keeping a safe distance from the edge of the rim, and staying behind railings and fences at overlooks," the park said in a statement.

The accident happened at about noon on Friday.

The National Park Service and Coconino County Medical Examiner's Office are investigating the fall.

The Grand Canyon reopened its North and South rims on June 5 after shutting down temporarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is the second person to die in the park in recent weeks. A 49-year-old California woman died of heat exposure on June 24 on the Grand Canyon's South Kaibab Trail. The woman, her husband and a friend had been planning to spend the night at Phantom Ranch inside the canyon.