Culture

Man Dissolves in Hot Acid After Trying to 'Hot Pot' at Yellowstone National Park

Image Credit Shutterestock

Yellowstone National Park is home to 3,500 square miles of beautiful wilderness, hot springs, gushing geysers, and rambling rivers. It’s also the site of the Norris Geyser Basin, a hot spring filled with boiling acid. The water is acidic due to the deep thermal water that picks up sulfuric acid as it rises to the surface. It was recently revealed that a man died in the spring in June by way of dissolving.

Twenty-three-year-old Colin Scott and his sister went to an unauthorized part of the park looking for a place to soak or “hot pot” in the hot waters, a practice forbidden by the national park. Colin bent over to check the temperature of the water and fell in. Deputy Chief Ranger Lorant Veress said, “They were specifically moving in that area for a place that they could potentially get into and soak, I think they call it hot potting.”

Scott’s sister tried to rescue him but was not successful. A lightening storm kept rescuers from retrieving his body right away and when they returned the next day, his body had disintegrated. Veress said, “In a very short order, there was a significant amount of dissolving.” The victim’s sister was videotaping as the incident occurred but the video has not been released.

The victim’s sister was videotaping as the incident occurred but the video has not been released.

Deputy Veress stressed how important it is to stay in the designated areas, “because Yellowstone is wild and it hasn’t been overly altered by people to make things a whole lot safer, it’s got dangers. And a place like Yellowstone, which is set aside because of the incredible geothermal resources that are here, all the more so.”

Scott was not the first to die in the park’s boiling waters as there were 20 people before him. Yellowstone has signs explaining the dangers and its “unforgiving environment,” but some people don’t heed the warnings.