A 70-year-old man died while hiking in the Escalante River area Wednesday. Kane County officials said the man was hiking in group when he collapsed suddenly.

Kane County Sheriff’s Office received notification about an emergency beacon from Northeastern Kane County around 9 a.m. The GPS coordinates placed the signal to a popular trail near the confluence of  Coyote Gulch and the Escalante River. The trail is used to exit the canyon at a location known as “Crack in the Wall.”

Not knowing the exact nature of the call, Kane County requested a medical helicopter. When crews landed, they were told a member of the hiking group had died.

Officials said a group of six had been hiking and rafting in the Escalante Canyon for five days. While hiking out of the canyon back to their vehicle, the 70-year-old Cedar City man suddenly collapsed.

Other members of the group began CPR but were unsuccessful in reviving him.

It was reported that he was in good health and enjoyed hiking, running and other outdoor activities.

The man’s body was transported to the Utah State Medical Examiner’s Office in Salt Lake City to determine his cause of death. The incident still under investigation by the Kane County Sheriff’s Office.

The sheriff’s office reminded the public to carry plenty of water and provisions as summer approaches and outdoor recreation increases. The agency also advocates for GPS alerting devices because they can greatly improve the speed and accuracy of responders if you need help.

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