Somebody Crashed a Drone into Yellowstone's Hot Springs

Illustration for article titled Somebody Crashed a Drone into Yellowstones Hot Springs

If you're going to roundly ignore the ban on drones in America's national parks, then indeed you deserve to lose your toy in the murky, 160-degree depths of a hot spring. This past weekend, a tourist crashed a drone right into Yellowstone's iconic Grand Prismatic Spring.

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The incident is under investigation, and officials hope to somehow retrieve the drone so it doesn't upset the natural ecosystem. A drone had also crashed at Yellowstone Lake last month, and the park has noticed more and more complaints from visitors about drones. As much as drone enthusiasts like their aerial photos, I'm sure animals would prefer not to be harassed by air and hot springs would like to stay drone debris-free.

A park spokeswoman also told the AP that Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming had issued a citation for a drone that became trapped in a tree. The drone was later stolen out of the tree. Not to endorse theft, but that's some karmic retribution, right? [Associated Press]

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Top image: Grand Prismatic Spring. James St. John/Creative Commons

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DISCUSSION

Can we PLEASE stop calling Quadcopters "Drones" They have about as much similarity to military drones and a paper airplane to a jumbo jet.

I am part of the RC Hobby community and it is a topic of great discussion what to do about the issues that are out there with people flying their stuff unsafely. Overall, most people that are true hobbyists and involved in the community know better than to fly unsafely, close to people, or in sensitive areas.

It is the people that have more money than sense and spend $500-$5000 on a quadcopter and then do fly it around a forest fire, into national monuments, or crash them at places like this. These people are typically not involved in the community. They have never been instructed on the proper way to use them safely. They usually shun the real hobbyists that have made these expensive toys a possibility through their experimenting and hard work.

It is a shame that we have been getting a bad rep for all that is going on. We all agree that something needs to be done, it can't possibly go on like it is. But there has to be some kind of middle ground that keeps the hobby alive and creates a basis to do it safely.

Personally I don't fly them. I find the lack of skill needed extremely boring. I just hate to see people hate on RC Hobbyists because of a few high profile dumbasses.