One of the seven natural wonders of the world, the Grand Canyon is truly something you have to see to believe. The canyon tells the story of nearly two billion years of Earth’s geological history. Over that unfathomable span of time, the Colorado River has carved away layer after layer of rock, creating a canyon 277 miles in length, up to 18 miles in width, and more than 6,000 feet at its deepest point.
The Grand Canyon has been admired for thousands of years, first by Native American tribes, then European settlers, and now modern-day tourists. Today, the canyon draws around five million visitors every year, who take in the sights on foot, muleback, raft, or even via helicopter.
The vast majority of these visitors explore the park and experience the breathtaking views without incident. By following the rules of Grand Canyon National Park, such as maintaining the required distance from wildlife and staying on established trails, one can keep themselves safe while protecting the park for future generations to enjoy.
Now, it’s easy to accidentally get a little too close to a deer or take a step or two off a trail. Jumping over the rail, however, is a different matter entirely.
Grand Canyon Rail Jumper is Confronted by Local Visitor
Considering the metal railing is all that protects you from a mile-long plunge into the rocks below, it might seem unbelievable that anyone would jump over it, but it does happen – albeit rarely. Only about 1000 deaths have occurred in the last 200 years, and less than 100 of those resulted from falls.
For most outdoor enthusiasts, watching someone blatantly break the rules of a National Park is infuriating. They’re not only endangering themselves but the entire park in doing so. But how many of us would actually say something to the person committing the offense?
Well, for one local, watching a couple hop the rail at Grand Canyon National Park was too much to ignore. And rather than keep his furious thoughts to himself, he approached one of the culprits, confronting him face to face.
Storming directly up to the rail jumper, the angry local wasted no time on pleasantries. “Why would you do that? Why are you such a tool?” he asked, nose to nose with the rail jumper. “You’re under arrest.”
The delinquent Grand Canyon visitor then responded in kind. “Under arrest? Who the f–k are you?” he said.
The exchange then escalated further, the wrongdoer asking if the local was senile and the local subtly threatening to throw him over the rail.
Finally, a woman approached the two men, diffusing the situation before it got out of hand. “Hey, you guys, let’s knock it off,” she said. “We’re just trying to enjoy the scenery, okay? And have a good day. I’m military too, let’s just back off.”
Both men begrudgingly walked away from the ledge at that point but continued to stare each other down until they were out of sight.