Hiker Jumps Into Scalding Hot Spring In Bid To Save Dogs, Sustains Burns On 50 Percent Of Body As Both Dogs Die

A hiker was severely burned and two dogs are dead after an encounter at Panther Creek Hot Springs in the Salmon-Challis National Forest in Idaho. Paden McCormick was hiking with his wife, Katie McCormick, and their two dogs, Dexter and Dahlia. However, their hike turned into a tragedy when the dogs jumped into a hot spring that contained scalding hot water. Without hesitation, Paden jumped in to rescue his beloved pets as they yelped in pain from the searing waters. Sadly, Paden was unable to save either of the dogs and sustained second- and third-degree burns over 50 percent of his body from his heroic efforts.

The Daily Mail reports that the couple was hiking with their two dogs in the Salmon-Challis National Forest near Salmon, Idaho, when the harrowing ordeal unfolded. The pair set out to visit as many hot springs as possible, an easy feat considering the geothermal activity in the area and close proximity to Yellowstone National Park. However, while hiking in the mountains near the Panther Creek Hot Springs, McCormick’s two dogs decided to dive into the hot spring. Typically, the water in the Panther Creek Hot Springs is warm enough for bathing, but last Thursday, the temperatures had reached dangerously high temperatures. When the dogs hit the water, it began to scald them, and McCormick jumped in to rescue his pets.

A GoFundMe account setup by Paden’s cousin notes that Dahlia was almost immediately lost in the hot waters but Paden was able to drag Dexter from the waters, but the dog would later die from his injuries. Paden’s cousin notes that with no help nearby, McCormick was forced to walk to a nearby camp despite his horrifying burns over half his body.

“Paden, through his heroics in trying to save his pets, was burned on over 50% of his body with 2nd and 3rd degree burns, the latter being the most pertinent. He had to walk himself out of the hot springs area to the nearest camp where they were finally able to radio for an airlift out and to Missoula, MT. From Missoula, he was airlifted to Harborview medical Center in Seattle, WA and has been there since Thursday in the late evening.”

National Forest spokeswoman Amy Baumer notes that the hot springs in the area are normally okay for human bathers as the temperatures are mild. However, visitors are told to test the waters before entering as they can spike in temperature without notice. The current drought conditions were blamed for the excessively hot water, which was 190-plus degrees on the day of the McCormick’s hike. It was noted that “drought conditions may have curtailed cool water flows that normally mix with the springs,” which are geothermally heated.

What do you think of Paden McCormick’s extreme actions to try and save his beloved dogs?

[Image Credit: GoFundMe]

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