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Hiker found dead in Death Valley amid 118-degree heat

Heat Wave Summer Getty
Posted at 10:13 AM, Jul 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-30 12:13:29-04

DEATH VALLEY, CA – A hiker was found dead in Death Valley National Park on July 28, according to a joint statement from the Inyo County Sheriff's Office and Death Valley National Park.

Douglas Branham’s family members told authorities he planned on a 12-mile hike as temperatures hovered around 118 degrees.

The 68-year-old’s body was found by a California Highway Patrol helicopter, the statement said.

The Inyo County Coroner Office is investigating the cause of death.

Park rangers encourage summer visitors to only hike before 10 a.m. or at high elevations.