MOOSE, Wyo. – The National Park Service has no word yet on what caused two women climbers to fall to their deaths at Grand Teton National Park over the weekend.
The climbers died Saturday morning after falling about 200 feet while trying to climb 12,300-foot Teewinot Mountain, the sixth-tallest peak in the Teton Range.
The victims were 27-year-old Tyler Strandberg and 28-year-old Catherine Nix, both of Jackson, park spokesman Andrew White said. A third member of the climbing party, 26-year-old Rebecca Anderson of Jackson, was rescued unhurt from a small ledge by helicopter, White said.
About 30 people were involved in the search and rescue effort, including nine climbing rangers.
"The two climbers more or less fell simultaneously. We don't have a conclusive reason why," White said. The climbers were climbing without ropes, he said.
"It wasn't a situation where one fell and the other fell trying to get down to the other," White said. "They were simultaneous falls."
Completing an investigation and a final report on the cause of the accident will likely take weeks, White said. Grand Teton rangers commonly perform more than one search and rescue mission a day this time of year, and a report involving a fatality may take a month or two to complete, he said.
As rangers were preparing to remove the bodies of the dead climbers on Saturday, they received another call for help.
A man who was hiking alone in the mountains on Saturday called to report that he had pulled a "suitcase-sized" rock down on himself accidentally, injuring his leg. He was able to move to a more level location, where he was also evacuated by helicopter.