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Hiker dies after fall from Barn Bluff trail that was closed two years ago

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An Iowa man fell to his death Tuesday on a Barn Bluff trail that Red Wing closed two years ago because of its danger to hikers.

Red Wing's police department says seconds after officers and paramedics arrived in response to a report of a hiker stranded on the bluff's north face, they saw the man fall down the steep slope.

Authorities say they'll identify the victim after family members are notified, but the Rochester Post Bulletin reports he was described as an elderly man from Iowa who was hiking with his wife.

In 2013 a jogger died in a 200-foot fall from Barn Bluff's North Trail. The trail was then closed to hikers and remains closed.

In their statement Tuesday, police asked the public to respect the signs and barricades on the trail and not go around them for any reason.

That's been a problem, though. The Red Wing Republican Eagle notes that earlier this month a hiker fell after going around the "Trail Closed" sign, but was uninjured.

Three other hiking trails remain open on the bluff, which the city's website describes as one of the best-known natural features on the upper Mississippi River.

Non-hikers can appreciate it from their armchairs, thanks to YouTube videos like this one, which was posted in January (after "a long dangerous hike down a closed trail").

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