Man’s Body Recovered After Fatal Fall Near Bridal Veil Falls

Jul 18, 2021, 3:30 PM | Updated: Jul 20, 2021, 10:54 pm

PROVO, Utah — A Roosevelt man died after he fell while climbing near Bridal Veil Falls with his fiancée’s 9-year-old son, according to officials with the Utah County Sheriff’s Office.

Officials identified the man Sunday as 40-year-old Adrian Vanderklis.

Adrian Vanderklis, 40, of Roosevelt. (Utah County Sheriff’s Office)

Utah County deputies responded to the area around 7 p.m. Saturday after receiving a report of a man and a 9-year-old boy missing near Bridal Veil Falls.

“The woman reported that she could see her son, who was crying, but that she could not see her fiancé, and that she hadn’t seen him for ‘several hours,'” read a press release from UCSO.

Utah County Search and Rescue volunteers and a helicopter crew with the Utah Department of Public Safety were then called out to the area.

Vanderklis was located around 7:45 p.m. “on a very steep, near vertical, slope about 1/3 of a mile west of Bridal Veil Falls at an elevation of about 5,800 feet.”

Authorities said the boy, who eventually made it down on his own, was hiking ahead of Vanderklis and he didn’t even hear him fall. 

“He didn’t see him. Nobody else saw him fall,” said Sgt. Spencer Cannon with the Utah County Sheriff’s Office. “Maybe he hit some loose rock or maybe he just stumbled, but there’s very little room for error in that area.”

The recovery operation was called off Saturday night due to darkness in the area, but Search and Rescue volunteers returned early Sunday morning to retrieve Vanderklis’ body.

UCSO officials said volunteers secured his body before a DPS helicopter hoisted him off the cliff.

His body was then taken to the Medical Examiner’s office for an autopsy.

“While it is unclear exactly why Mr. Vanderklis fell, it is possible he stumbled, or slipped on loose material. Regardless, it appeared he was killed immediately as a result of the fall,” read the release.

Authorities said there’s an average of one or two deaths every year at Bridal Veil Falls.

“It’s really easy to get far beyond your skill level really quickly, and by then, if you don’t just stay put, you’re putting yourself at risk, and some people don’t recognize the risk until it’s too late,” said Cannon.

Authorities said if you’re planning to hike at Bridal Veil Falls, there are always areas that can be treacherous, so come prepared with the proper gear and be aware of the dangers.

A *GoFundMe account has been created for the family.

*KSL-TV does not assure that the money deposited to the account will be applied for the benefit of the persons named as beneficiaries. If you are considering a deposit to the account, you should consult your own advisors and otherwise proceed at your own risk.

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Man’s Body Recovered After Fatal Fall Near Bridal Veil Falls