Venom killed Ariz. climber covered with bee stings

Bees, partly loaded with pollen, return to their hive March 21, 2011, in Frankfurt, Germany.
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TUCSON, Ariz. A medical examiner says a Tucson climber founded dead, hanging from a southern Arizona cliff in his climbing gear, died from venom from bee stings.

Steven Johnson had hundreds of bee stings when found Monday in the Santa Rita Mountains. And the Arizona Daily Star reports that Dr. Gregory Hess says venom killed Johnson.

Johnson was found suspended from anchors and had apparently rappelled on a rope partway down the cliff , the Arizona Daily Star reports.

The 55-year-old was last seen Friday when he went hiking, and a search began Monday when friends got worried because he didn't go to work.

Searchers found both Johnson and his dog dead. The dog was on the top of the cliff and also had been stung. It was buried on the mountain.

A climber who went to the area Monday says Johnson's rope was hanging within a few feet of a beehive.

Santa Cruz County Sheriff Tony Estrada said Johnson had 30 years of hiking and climbing experience, CBS affiliate KOLD reported.