On August 23 at 11:30 am, Olympic National Park dispatch was notified of a possible drowning at Lake Crescent, WA. Forty-three-year-old Tou Yang, visiting from Robbinsdale, Minnesota, jumped from a 40-foot cliff at the popular swimming area known as “Devil’s Punchbowl,” resurfaced but then was unable to climb out on the rocky shoreline. He went under the water and never resurfaced.
Law enforcement responded with two patrol boats and began searching the area. The Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe Public Safety and Natural Resource dive team joined the search and were able to locate and recover Yang’s body four hours later.
- Related: How To Dive Off A Cliff… SAFELY!
The incident is currently under investigation by the National Park Service.
The water at Devil’s Punchbowl is deep and the entire lake can be very cold with temperatures averaging around 66 degrees. Sudden immersion into cold water can impact a person’s breathing and ability to move extremities. Swimmers are encouraged to use a buddy system while on the water, use a life jacket, and understand the risks of hidden hazards of natural waters – rocks, vegetation, currents, and waves.