Camera found after 13 years in Colorado river, photos recovered

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March 20 (UPI) -- An angler who found a camera in a Colorado river was able to retrieve the photos from the device and discovered it had been underwater for 13 years.

Spencer Greiner said he was fishing recently in the Animas River when he spotted a camera at the bottom of the shallow water.


"I was walking along and saw it sticking out of the sand," Greiner told KDVR-TV. "It was in rough shape, so I really didn't have any hopes of getting anything off of it, I was just planning to throw it away, and then curiosity got the best of me, and I had to see what was on it."

Greiner said he opened the camera's memory card compartment and water rushed out.

"I was like, 'Yeah, this is probably not going to work at all,'" Greiner said. "But I plugged it into the computer, and it read immediately and I was like, 'Oh cool, let's see what sort of treasures we're going to find on this memory card.'"

He discovered the phone was loaded with photos of a bachelorette party, a wedding and a tubing trip.


Greiner posted some of the photos to a Durango community Facebook group, where members started recognizing themselves in the pictures.

The camera turned out to have been dropped by Coral Amayi during a 2010 tubing trip on the river.

"I had gotten tossed from my tube at Smelter Rapid," she said. "And I came back up, got my tube, and my camera was missing."

Greiner and Amayi determined the camera had traveled about 1.2 miles downriver during its 13 years underwater.

"Hats off to OM System and their Olympus Stylus 790W," Amayi wrote in a Facebook post. "The camera was unusable but it was tough enough to keep the SD card intact."

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