An Oregon woman, who spent three nights at the Mount Hood National Forest after falling off a cliff, said she ate berries and bugs, drank water from a creek and tried to scoot to safety on her bottom as she could not walk, according to reports.
Pamela Salant, 28, was admitted to the Legacy Emanuel Medical Centre and was in serious condition late Tuesday with a possible broken left leg, said Hood River County sheriff's Detective Matt English. An Oregon Army National Guard helicopter rescued her on Tuesday afternoon.
Salant was hiking with her boyfriend, Aric Essig on Saturday. The couple got separated after they dropped their gear near Bear Lake and went different ways looking for a camping spot. Unfortunately Salant fell 50 feet into the Lindsey Creek drainage and broke her lower left leg in two places, said English. After her fall Salant dragged herself on her bottom along the creek, trying to reach the Columbia River to get help. She ended up in a steep drainage, about a mile and a half from the lake, reports the Washington Post.
At about 2 p.m. on Tuesday an Oregon Army National Guard Helicopter spotted Salant waving from the creek bottom reports OregonLive.com. The Guard dispatched a medic helicopter from Salem to take her to the hospital. A hoist pulled a rescuer and Salant into the helicopter at about 3:45 p.m, added the report.
Salant told English that she survived her ordeal by living on berries from the forest and water from the creek. She was covered with insect bites and suffered cuts from dragging herself on the ground towards the Columbia River.
Essig said that Salant was not experienced in the outdoors. She was not carrying her camping equipment, or warm clothes and had no communication equipment when she disappeared. Moreover, Salant was just clad in a tank top and dark shorts at the time of the incident.
More than two dozen people from the Hood River County Sheriff's Office, besides the National Guard and the U.S. Forest Service police, conducted a rigorous search for Salant on Monday and Tuesday.