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Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area

Lovell Man Drowns In Bighorn Canyon Over the Weekend

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

A Lovell man drowned in Bighorn Canyon north of Lovell while swimming with friends over the weekend, according to the National Park Service.

The body of Dominic Hunder, 19, of Lovell, was found Saturday afternoon after a search of the canyon was conducted by National Park Service personnel, officers from the Big Horn County, Wyoming, and Carbon County, Montana, sheriff’s offices and members of the Big Horn County Search and Rescue and U.S. Water Rescue Dive Team.

The search included vessels, underwater cameras, divers and people walking the shorelines.

The search began Friday after officials received a report that a 19-year-old man was missing from an area near Barry’s Landing in the canyon.

According to reports, Hunder was swimming with friends in the Hillsboro area when he became fatigued and slipped beneath the water. He was unable to be rescued and didn’t resurface.

Around 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, the Hunder’s body was found.

“We are saddened by this unfortunate event. Our thoughts and prayers go to the family and friends of the victim. I commend the multi-agency search and rescue team for their hard work and perseverance,” said Raymond McPadden, acting superintendent of the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area.

Visitors are encouraged to use life jackets when swimming or boating in the canyon.

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Learn about Bighorn Canyon NRA during “Junior Ranger Day”

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Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area Junior Ranger Day this weekend

By Cowboy State Daily

People interested in learning more about the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area should visit the recreation area near Lovell this weekend for “Junior Ranger Day.”

The day is filled with activities designed to teach kids and adults about the activities available to them in the park, said Todd Johnson, a park ranger and visual information specialist for the recreation area.

“It’s to get them to experience what the park is all about,” he said. “We have different activities for them. We have developed ‘junior ranger’ booklets and they get stamps in their booklets as they finish different activities.”

The celebration is part of National Park Week, observed April 20 through 28. Part of that observation nationally is “Junior Ranger Day,” Johnson said, although each park or recreation area is allowed to set its own activities and schedule for the day.

“It’s meant to help you better understand the individual park that you’re visiting,” he said.

Activities available during Saturday’s event at Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area will include fishing, geology and art, Johnson said. Participants will also be encouraged at one station to use a camera to take some photographs that they will then be able to post on social media.

Once the booklets are filled with stamps, participants can turn them in at the Bighorn Canyon Visitor Center to receive a National Park Week Junior Ranger badge.

While the activities are largely aimed at children, Johnson said it is not unusual to see adults visiting activity stations as well.

“Last year we had some women who just wanted to go ahead and participate, which is fantastic,” he said. “It’s a popular thing for adults to do as well, because they learn a lot.”

For more information, call the recreation area at (307) 548-5406.

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