Two bodies of a father and a son were found dead in Carlsbad Caverns National Park after they went hiking for the weekend n 100-degree weather.
Robert Stuart Pluta, 57, and his son, Robert “Bobby” Neal Pluta, 21, of Corpus Christi, were reported missing on Monday after the Fairfield Inn in Carlsbad revealed that the pair did not check out from their room, grieving wife and mother Lillian Pluta reported.
Mrs Pluta had attempted to reach both men multiple times over the weekend, but never received any response, according to a news release from the New Mexico State Police.
Investigations were conducted to find the father and son; searchers with the U.S. National Park Service found the Plutas’ red Ford F-150 truck parked at the Rattlesnake Canyon trailhead at around 4 pm on Monday.
Early Monday evening, law enforcement and emergency crews went on scrutinising the location near the trailhead and the surrounding Chihuahuan Desert.
Robert “Bobby” Neal The younger Pluta’s body was found at 10:05 p.m. Monday night about 2 miles north-west of the park’s visitor centre.
Robert Stuart Pluta’s body, on the other hand, was found at 10:42 a.m. Tuesday about a mile away from his son.
Extreme weather swings
New Mexico State Police spokesman Officer Carl Christiansen said the two will be taken to the state’s Office of the Medical Investigator so they can identify the reason behind the death.
He said the investigation is ongoing and is being carried about by the State Police.
Valerie Golkhe, who is a spokeswoman for Carlsbad Caverns, said if anyone would like to go hiking the backcountry trails of the park, they initially should check in with park officials due to the extreme weather swings and the dangers they may encounter.
Temperatures over the past weekend rose above 100 degrees in the area the two were found dead.
“We have pretty extreme temperatures here.” Golkhe said. “You need plenty of water. Dehydration happens quickly.”