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Cyclist hurt in dark Zion National Park tunnel

First Published Feb 22 2014 05:18PM      Last Updated Feb 22 2014 08:07 pm

A line of cars waits to enter Zion National Park in this Oct. 11, 2013, photo. (Jim Dalrymple)

A West Jordan cyclist suffered a serious head injury trying to bike through a dark tunnel in Zion National Park.

A group of 12 people had arranged for a shuttle to take them through the narrow, unlit Zion-Mt. Carmel Tunnel Friday afternoon, but eight of them decided to ride through instead, according to a park news release. That was when a 51-year-old West Jordan man and another cyclist apparently hit the tunnel wall and crashed.

The West Jordan man hit his head and was taken to the hospital with significant head trauma, while the second person only tore his shirt and refused any medical treatment. The injured man’s condition on Saturday was not immediately available.



Biking through the tunnel, which is about a mile long, is illegal. Park rangers issued violation notices to the group.

"As soon as we rounded the corner, it was like pitch black and that’s where it happened," one of the cyclists is quoted in the release. "… he was just lying there. They were in a bad spot, and only two of the bikers had little flashers."

The quoted cyclist, who is not named in the release, turned around and stopped any traffic from entering the tunnel too quickly to keep anyone else from getting hurt. "It was really stupid what we’d done… I think we all learned our lesson and we now have to pay the price."

mmcfall@sltrib.com

Twitter: @mikeypanda

 

 

 

 

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