Two women died Friday on the Gunnison River in separate accidents caused by dangerous water conditions, according to the Gunnison County Sheriff’s office.
A 31-year-old woman was paddle-boarding just west of Gunnison when she fell into swift currents and got stuck in a tree in the river at 11 am on Friday. Deputies, search and rescue, and fire crews got to her, and she was taken to Gunnison Valley Hospital, then flown to Grand Junction. Authorities say they were later told she didn’t survive. Her name isn’t being released yet.
The second happened on Friday afternoon when a 65-year-old woman died Friday in a rafting accident where the Gunnison enters the eastern end of Blue Mesa Reservoir. Her name wasn’t immediately released. National Parks Service officers found the woman who had been in an apparent kayaking accident and performed CPR, but she did not survive.
The two separate incidents bring the total number of deaths in the Colorado spring runoff to at least 5. A Colorado Springs woman, Roberta Sophia Rodriguez, is also missing in the South Fork of the Rio Grande. Authorities say she went into the furious waters in recent days and hasn’t been since reports the Colorado Sun.
Officials have urged people using Colorado’s rivers to exercise caution as melting snow continues to produce turbulent runoff.