Woman Killed in Crash at Colorado National Monument After Leaving Rim Rock Road

by Alex Falls

A fatal crash took the life of one woman near the Colorado National Monument Monday night. According to authorities at the National Park Service, the crash involved two 28-year-olds. One of whom was killed while the other remains hospitalized.

Authorities received a 911 call late Monday evening reporting an accident near the area of Grand Junction. The 911 call was placed around 10:20 PM. The accident occurred when the vehicle occupied by the two young people left Rim Rock Road near the Coke Ovens Overlook.

Of the two passengers, one was male and the other was female. The female passenger was tragically found dead at the scene. Additionally, the male passenger survived the crash and was transported to a local hospital with unknown injuries.

Search and rescue efforts involved the participation of many local agencies. Including Colorado State Patrol, Lower Valley Fire Department, Mesa County Sheriff’s Office, Mesa County Sheriff’s Technical Rescue Team, CareFlight and the Mesa County Coroner.

Rim Rock Drive is a popular tourist spot at Colorado National Monument. The attraction stretches roughly 23 miles. These roads are often flanked by steep drops on either side. The park’s website notes these roads should be navigated with caution as they are often filled with potential hazards such as local wildlife, fallen rocks, and narrow shoulders.

Another Tragic Story From the Mountains of Colorado This Week

The young woman on Monday unfortunately was not the only fatality in the rugged Colorado mountain area this week. Also on Monday, three people died when a crash took place on a mountain road near Ouray, Colorado.

The crash happened on Monday sometime between 11 AM and 12 PM on Ouray County Road 361, roughly at milepost 3, according to Colorado State Patrol Trooper Joshua Lewis. This section of mountain road can be dangerous. It’s unpaved and frequently has a steep drop that is often used to access Yankee Boy Basin and other recreational spots in the area. It’s often referred to as Camp Bird Road.

The accident involved a 2022 Jeep. The vehicle was traveling away from the mountain basins where the road leads north towards to the town of Ouray in southwest Colorado. While navigating the rough terrain, the vehicle drifted off the right edge of the road and fell down the cliff. The jeep tumbled several hundred feet and ejected the driver during the fall.

Three people were involved in the accident. A 72-year-old male driver local to the Ouray area. Plus a 60-year-old female passenger from Arizona and a 28-year-old female passenger also from Arizona. All three people were declared deceased at the scene of the accident.

According to reports, no drugs or alcohol were factors at the time of the accident.