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Pelkie man dies after fall while hiking at Sturgeon River Gorge

75-year-old Douglas Brent Welker slipped while hiking down a trail at the edge of a 20-foot-high cliff.
FILE. Waterfall at the base of the Sturgeon River  Gorge trails.
FILE. Waterfall at the base of the Sturgeon River Gorge trails.(WLUC)
Published: Aug. 17, 2021 at 5:38 PM EDT
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MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - A Pelkie man has died following a Monday afternoon fall while hiking at Sturgeon River Gorge.

According to the Michigan State Police Calumet Post, at about 12:15 p.m. on August 16, troopers were dispatched to a hiker who had fallen off a cliff at the Sturgeon River Gorge in Houghton County’s Laird Township.

Investigation showed that while hiking near the waterfall, 75-year-old Douglas Brent Welker, of Pelkie, slipped while hiking down a trail at the edge of a 20-foot-high cliff.

Welker struck his head during the fall and was pronounced dead at the scene. No foul play is suspected.

MSP says the fall was determined to be accidental as a result of the investigation.

Bay Ambulance, Pelkie Fire and Rescue, L’Anse Fire Department, US Forest Service, Alston Fire and Rescue, Covington Fire Department, Laird Township Fire Department, and Keweenaw Bay Tribal Police assisted the MSP at the scene.

The Michigan State Police remind the public to use extra caution when hiking on steep trails, in known or unknown areas.

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