Woman Survives 100-Foot Fall During Hike

Fire chief calls Amber Kohnhorst's survival miraculous
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 25, 2016 1:17 PM CDT
Woman Survives 100-Foot Fall During Hike
An image from the GoFundMe campaign to raise money for Amber Kohnhorst's medical expenses.   (GoFundMe)

Amber Kohnhorst was on what was supposed to be a short hike on northwestern Arizona's Rose Cliffs Trail Friday when she fell 100 feet. Amazingly, after being stranded for almost 25 hours, she survived—though she broke her nose, crushed her pelvis, and suffered three back fractures, Fox 10 Phoenix reports. Kohnhorst was rescued after the owners of the inn where the 25-year-old Minnesota nurse was staying alerted authorities when she didn't return to the inn by Saturday. Searchers heard Kohnhorst blowing her emergency whistle and located her, and she was evacuated to a hospital in Utah, St. George News reports.

"It was really nothing short of miraculous that this lady was found. She was ledged out 200 feet down a cliff in a slot (canyon)," the local fire chief tells the News. "We estimate she fell 50 feet, free fall, and another 50 feet of tumble and slide. She was real beat up." A GoFundMe campaign raising money for Kohnhorst's medical expenses notes that she was on a volunteer trip to Utah's Best Friends Animal Society at the time of her accident: "Since childhood, animals and the outdoors have played a vital role in Amber's life." Per the campaign, it's not clear when Kohnhorst—who has already undergone multiple surgeries—will be able to return home, but she got a back brace on Tuesday, which allowed her to sit up for the first time since her fall. (More uplifting news stories.)

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