A couple was returning to their car after hiking in the San Juan National Forest when the male hiker was grazed by a loose bullet, according to KDVR. The incident occurred on Steven’s Creek Trail around 1 p.m. on Sunday, February 20th. Gunshots were heard as they were walking down CR 253, and the couple believed shooters were firing into an unpopulated area of the forest. Unfortunately, a man was shooting a sign along the side of the road, and a bullet fragment grazed the hiker’s arm.
“It ricocheted off something and then deflected off at me. An inch over and it would have been in my stomach.” – Hiker, according to KDVR
The use of firearms in National Forests is allowed for target shooting, but can’t be fired across roads, trails, or bodies of water. The shooters were stopped on Highway 550, and the man who shot the hiker was issued a summons for criminal mischief, prohibited use of a weapon, and third-degree assault.
This is a good reminder to wear bright, noticeable clothing while hiking. Also, it’s a good idea to remember that just because guns are allowed in an area, those with the weapons aren’t necessarily using them safely. However you feel about firearms, everyone should agree that if you’re going to own a gun, you should know how to safely and properly use it.
Image Credit: KDVR Fox 31