Late last month, a man named Jeff H. was walking on a trail in Yellowstone National Park when he noticed a group of tourists ignoring warning signs and standing next to one of the famous hot springs for close-up photos. His video 4.5-minute video above showing himself scolding the tourists has since gone viral.
“What the heck. Hey! Get out of there!” Jeff can be heard shouting in the video. A sign next to the trail warns, “Danger. Fragile Thermal Area,” and instructs visitors to stay on official marked trails. Even after Jeff’s shouts, the tourists continued taking snapshots of the pool, touching the water, and posing for group pictures.
After pointing his camera in several tourists’ faces as they walked back to the trail, Jeff was confronted by a few of them who asked why he was filming them and requesting that Jeff delete the footage.
Public reaction to the video has been divided, with many praising the man for protecting the park from careless trespassers, while others accuse Jeff of being rude and unhelpful in the way he dealt with the situation.
Walking up to a hot spring in Yellowstone is not only bad for the thermal features, but the boiling, acidic pools are extremely dangerous as well: just last year, a 23-year-old man from Oregon died and was dissolved after he accidentally fell into a hot spring while reaching down to check the temperature.
And the government takes these trespasses seriously as well: last year, federal arrest warrants were issued for three men caught on camera while walking on Yellowstone’s Grand Prismatic Spring.