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Officials urge hiking safety after bluff fall

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) – An accidental fall from Grandad Bluff that left one man in the hospital reminds hikers once again of the dangers posed by one of the most majestic overlooks in the entire Midwest.

Grandad Bluff stands nearly 600 feet above the surrounding land. Over the years, the bluff has seen its share of tragedy, often by those who ignore safety barricades.

First responders and police said bluff top visitors should consider those incidents, including Monday’s, as a warning.

“It’s pretty treacherous out there and I think ultimately it just boils down to people using some good common sense,” said La Crosse Police Sergeant Tom Walsh.

Sgt. Walsh said in Monday’s incident, a person climbed around a railing on Grandad, which is exactly what visitors are not supposed to do.

The bluff is actually made out of sandstone, which isn’t extremely stable, especially after recent wet weather. Sgt. Walsh said there are better and safer options.

“I would just really urge members of the public and our hiking areas at large to just find those safe areas and not go out on these soft, steep, treacherous areas here on Grandad Bluff,” Sgt. Walsh said.

Sgt. Walsh also recommends bringing extra water and a cell phone with you while hiking just in case of an emergency, even if you are in a safe and marked area.

RELATED: Bluff Rescue at Grandad

Amber Meyer

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