CHEYENNE, Wyo. - A college student survived a lightning strike while mountain climbing, but was killed in a second strike about an hour later as he and his girlfriend waited out the storm, authorities said.
The body of Ryan Sayers, 20, of Colorado Springs, Colo., was recovered Tuesday, the day after he was killed on Steeple Peak in the Wind River mountain range in central Wyoming.
He and Katrin Birmann, 24, of Munich, Germany, were climbing a cliff on the 12,000-foot peak Monday afternoon when lightning first hit them 1,500 feet from the summit.
Removing their equipment, the couple decided to sit out the storm. But about an hour later they were hit by another lightning strike, and Sayers fell about 300 feet into a ravine.
Birmann, who suffered minor burns, found her boyfriend dead when she rappelled down to him. She spent the night at the base of the mountain and hiked out the next day, calling authorities on a cell phone she borrowed from two hikers.