Person dies on Palisade Plunge trail

At approximately 6:45 Saturday evening, the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office was notified of a person suffering from a heat-related illness near mile marker 28 on the Palisade Plunge trail. 

The 52-year-old male from Colorado Springs was riding the mountain biking trail alone and ran out of water. A group of three other riders stopped to help him and called 911. 

The Mesa County Sheriff’s Office, Mesa County Search and Rescue, Palisade Fire Department, and Careflight’s helicopter immediately responded to the remote area and began life-saving measures. The person did not survive. 

The three good samaritans were also out of water. They started with a gallon of water each and ran out about 10 miles before the end of the trail. They were rescued and treated for dehydration. 

The Mesa County Coroner's Office is responsible for determining the person’s cause and manner of death as well as releasing their name once their next-of-kin is notified.

Temperatures reached a record high of 102 degrees in Grand Junction on Saturday, and triple-digits are expected again on Sunday. Strenuous activity during extreme heat is strongly discouraged. Community members are advised to limit outdoor activities to the early morning hours. The CDC recommends drinking at least 8 oz of water every 15 minutes while doing activities in the heat. 

The Palisade Plunge is a 32-mile mountain bike trail with very little shade and sections of extreme exposure. Due to the remote location of the trail, riders must carry all water, food, and emergency supplies. At least 10 liters (2 ½ gallons) of water per person and electrolyte replenishments are recommended for this trail in the summer.