A Wyoming woman was hiking with her husband when she, unfortunately, fell over 200 feet to her death in the Bighorn Mountains.
Calli Aust was on a sunrise hike in the Wyoming mountains with her husband when the unthinkable happened. On Tuesday (June 15) morning, the 28-year-old Cowboy State resident fell more than 200 feet to her death, noted authorities.
Disaster While Hiking the Bighorn Mountains
According to a statement made by the Sheridan County Sheriff’s Office, Aust had fallen off a cliff while hiking in the early hours of the morning. Her husband called 911 for assistance just before 6 a.m. The couple was located at Steamboat Point in the Bighorn Mountains.
The mountains cover more than 1.1 million acres in the north-central area of Wyoming, within the Bighorn National Forest, which rests on the border of Wyoming and Montana.
Steamboat Point is roughly two hours from Billings, Montana, and nearly three from Casper, Wyoming.
Due to the poor cellphone service in the secluded mountains, Aust’s husband could not get an exact location on Calli.
After a little over an hour, Calli Aust’s body was found by rescue crews. She was located on the southwest side of Steamboat Point at 7:15 a.m., reports the New York Post. Shortly after officials discovered her, they recovered Aust’s lifeless body.
Authorities reveal that there were “no indications of foul play.” However, Aust’s death is under investigation. In addition, police are still unsure as to how she fell from the 200-foot cliff, but Aust’s death has been labeled accidental for now.
Safety Concerns on Steamboat Point
Sara Kirol, a spokesperson for Bighorn National Forest, described the area where Calli Aust fell from. She said it’s an abandoned fire lookout with a pipe railing located near the lookout’s concrete footers.
The spokeswoman continued, saying the platform isn’t a secure area and that there are no safety measures at the location where the Wyoming woman fell.
“It is not a safe barrier, but merely a remnant of the lookout tower,” Kirol said to The Sheridan Press newspaper. “Cliff edges are unstable, and there are a lot of loose rocks on the top of these high places. Standing or sitting near or on the edge of cliff faces is very risky, no matter the location.”
Currently, the Sheridan County Sheriff’s Office is leading the investigation. They are being aided by Wyoming Highway Patrol and Bighorn National Forest Service Law Enforcement. Furthermore, the county coroner’s office is carrying out its own investigation into the death of Calli Aust.
The Twitter account for Bighorn National Forest has also not commented on the unfortunate death.
According to Summit Post, the popular hiking spot has an elevation of 7,877 feet. Additionally, the website notes that Steamboat Point is a Class 1 trail and is about 1.7 miles long.