Rescue workers search for hiker at Yosemite waterfall

Reuters News
Posted: Jul 19, 2011 10:53 PM

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Rescue workers at Yosemite National Park were looking for at least one hiker who they fear may have fallen into the Merced River on Tuesday and been swept over the 320-foot Vernal waterfall, a park spokeswoman said.

Several witnesses reported seeing the hiker or multiple hikers fall into the river above the fall along the popular Mist Trail, spokeswoman Kari Cobb said.

Officials at the central California park sent 30 rescue workers and rangers to search for the missing hiker or hikers, and closed a half-mile portion of the Mist Trail, she said.

In May, a man from Texas slipped into the river downstream from the fall and died.

The Merced has been especially full and turbulent this year due to heavier than usual snowpack melt.

(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis: Editing by Cynthia Johnston)