Half Dome Victim ID'd as Los Gatos Man

Death is the 17th in the park so far in 2011

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    It's a beautiful rock.

    It's happened again -- Yosemite National Park rangers were forced to search for a body this week after hikers reported seeing someone fall while climbing Half Dome.

    The report came in late Monday. The body of the man the Mercury News identified as Ryan Leeder from Los Gatos was recovered Tuesday afternoon.

    Yosemite spokesman Scott Gediman said they think he must have climbed Half Dome by the trail and cables, then crossed the flat summit on top. They said he either fell or jumped on purpose 4,000 feet.

    They said the condition of his body made it intially difficult to determine the man's age. The Merc said Leeder was 23 years old.

    This year has been one of Yosemite's deadliest in recent memory. The death is No. 17 to occur in the park or to result from injuries sustained in the park, Gediman said.

    Last month, three people were swept over a snowmelt-swollen waterfall. A 26-year-old woman died when she slipped down Half Dome while descending the steep cabled slope.