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Dogs die, man severely burned at Panther Creek Hot Spring

A Boise family wants to help warn the community of a dangerous hot spring in north central Idaho.

Paden McCormic had to be taken by air ambulance to Seattle after suffering third-degree burns on over half his body. McCormic was burned after going into Panther Creek Hot Springs, also know as Big Creek Hot spring, on August 20 th .

McCormic was hiking with his wife, Katie, and their three dogs. According to Katie’s mother, Christine Brown., as they approached the hot spring one of the dogs ran and jumped into the spring. The dog began to yelp in pain and a second dog jumped in to help rescue the other animal. The second dog went under the water immediately and never resurfaced. At that point Paden McCormic went into the water to save the other dog.

The family moved back down to their truck as quickly as possible, trying to get both Paden and the dog medical attention. As they were headed down the road, they met with the Centenial Type II Intial Attack crew from the Island Park Ranger District who were on their way back from fighting the Elkhorn Fire on the Salmon Challis National Forest. The firefighting team helped to stabilize McCormic and prepared a site for an Air Ambulance to land. McCormic was flown to Missoula first but after investigating the extent of the burns, doctors ordered him flown to Seattle for treatment.

According to Brown, Paden McCormic may have three months left in the hospital as he is treated for severe burns.

The second dog was taken to Blue Cross Veterinary Clinic in Salmon where it later died from severe burns.

The incident has prompted the Salmon-Challis National Forest to issue a warning that the hot springs are experiencing a dangerous temperature increase this summer.

People are urged to use caution when approaching the water in the springs because it could be near, or even above boiling.

A donation campaign for Paden’s health expanses can be found at

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