This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Zion National Park officials on Monday identified a hiker who drowned in a weekend flash flood as Douglas Yoshi Vo, 34, of Westminster, California.
Zion spokesman David Eaker said Vo and a male companion had attempted a hike in the Zion Canyon Narrows on Saturday morning, when heavy rainstorms suddenly triggered flash flooding. The companion swam out, but Vo was trapped and unable to escape.
The two had entered the Narrows early Saturday morning, when the river was reportedly flowing at about 46 cubic feet per second. When heavy rain began to fall about 9:30 a.m., the hikers decided to end their excursion and go back down the Narrows to the Riverside Walk Trail.
However, the water rapidly rose as the river's flow peaked at 4,020 CFS. The two hikers became stranded on high ground, but on opposite sides of the river.
"They could not communicate, due to the noise from the river. They waited from around 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. [Saturday] for the water to recede, but it was still too high for them to hike out," Eaker stated.
While his friend swam down river, Vo remained on high ground, apparently safe. The companion reached park rangers about 6:30 p.m. However, due to the danger of the swollen river, rescue efforts were delayed until Sunday morning.
Rescuers could not find Vo at the last location his friend had seen him, but about 2 p.m. Sunday found his body along the banks of the Virgin River near the Riverside Walk.
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