A man has been caught on camera strolling right across Yellowstone National Park's most famous hot spring, Grand Prismatic, just days after another incident where a visitor shucked his shoes and walked over the thin crust barefoot.
This latest incident was recorded by Lucian Bennett-Brandt, who said that the man was one one of a whole group who ignored safety warning and strolled off the boardwalk to get right up to the scalding water. In his video, which you can watch below, the man marches so far away from the safe area, it's hard to even make him out.
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Yellowstone National Park was created to protect its unique geothermal features, and they remain one of its biggest attractions, but they can also be dangerous. Over 20 people have died after entering hot springs and pools, either deliberately or by falling, and serious injuries are all too common.
In 2019 a man was badly injured after accidentally falling into a thermal pool while walking off a boardwalk in the dark. In 2021, a woman suffered severe burns from her shoulders to her feet after entering a spring while trying to rescue her dog.
"Water in hot springs can cause severe or fatal burns, and scalding water underlies most of the thin, breakable crust around hot springs," warns the National Park Service (NPS). Visitors must stick to established trails and boardwalks, and never touch thermal water or runoff.
Violating these rules is against the law, and the NPS takes such incidents very seriously. In August this year, a man was charged with two misdemeanor federal counts after straying off the boardwalks in a geothermal area and burning himself. A spokesperson for the US Attorney's Office said that he suffered “a non-life-threatening injury to his lower extremity."
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Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.