A 35-year-old woman was severely injured after she fell nearly 200 feet while descending Mount Washington in New Hampshire. The woman, Ashley Furness, was traversing railroad tracks, which are used to transport tourists up and down the mountain, when she lost her balance.
Furness tumbled down the mountain and landed on an embankment about 200-feet below. Luckily, her fall was broken by some rocks and she did not drop into the deep ravine below. Her companion managed to climb down to her and called 911.
"It was these rocks that ultimately saved her from plunging into the ravine, a fall that would have likely proved fatal," Lt. Mark Ober, Jr. said in a news release. "Her companion was able to descend to her position, place a call for help, and keep her warm with a space blanket until rescuers arrived."
Rescue workers were forced to search for the two hikers on foot because there was no snow on the trail, making their snowmobiles and ATVs useless on the icy and rocky terrain. Faced with a daunting overnight rescue, officials decided to ask Cog Railway to send a train to pick up Furness.
"Without the use of the train, we were looking at a potentially all-night rescue scenario which would have included calling in several dozen additional rescuers and technical rope teams just to get the injured hiker down the mountain safely," Ober said.
Furness was lifted onto the train and transported to the base of the mountain where an ambulance was waiting. Authorities did not disclose the extent of her injuries.
Mount Washington has a summit of 6,288 feet, making it the tallest mountain in the Northeast.
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