Hikers Swept Away in Yosemite

Posted on July 20, 2011

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MISHA WEE

Three hikers were swept away by the fast-moving waters of Vernal Fall at Yosemite National Park early Tuesday afternoon.

Ramina Badal, Hormiz David, and Ninos Yacoub, all in their 20s, hiked the popular Mist Trail to reach the top of the 317-foot fall and climbed over the guardrail into the Merced River, despite the pleadings of witnesses from shore.

3 hikers were swept down the 317-foot high Vernal Falls in California's Yosemite National Park (Courtesy of AP)

Park officials immediately closed off Mist Trail to search for the hikers. Heavy snowfall from the winter swelled the waters to treacherously high levels this year. Tuesday night, investigators were forced to call off the search due to darkness, and resumed the hunt today. They are searching the Merced River for signs of the missing hikers.

Multiple signs in several different languages were placed at the top of Vernal Falls to warn hikers of the dangers of slippery boulders and fast-moving water.

According to park spokeswoman Kari Cobb, there have been at least eight reported deaths in Yosemite Park this year alone.

(Featured image courtesy of CNN.)

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Posted in: National