MAMMOTH, Wyoming — An Oregon man who died after falling into an acid-filled hot spring in Yellowstone National Park in June, was searching for a place to “hot-pot” or soak in a thermal pool when he lost his footing, a new report revealed.
Colin Nathaniel Scott, 23, had wandered off the park’s boardwalk trail in the Norris Geyser Basin with his sister, Sable Scott, when he tried to test the water temperature in a pool and fell in.
“They were specifically moving in that area for a place that they could potentially get into and soak,” Deputy Chief Ranger Lorand Veress told KULR-TV. “I think they call it ‘hot potting.'”
“There’s a closure in place to keep people from doing that for their own safety and also to protect the resources because they are very fragile. But, most importantly for the safety of people because it’s a very unforgiving environment,” he said.
Sable Scott had been videotaping her brother on her phone when the accident happened and captured his horrific final moments on film, park ranger reports obtained by the Montana TV station showed.
When rangers arrived at the hot spring, they determined that Colin Scott was dead. Floating on the surface of the spring were Scott’s melted orange flip-flops and wallet and nearby they spotted the “upper torso of a male victim floating face-up.”
The temperature in the 10-foot-deep pool was over 212 degrees Fahrenheit, the report stated.
A lightning storm and darkness forced the rangers to abandon their recovery efforts and when they returned the following morning there was no sign of Scott’s body.
“Evidence suggests that the extreme heat and the acidity of the water quickly dissolved his body in the hot spring,” according to the report. The cause of death was listed as ‘”scalding due to submersion in thermal hot spring.”