Amber Kornhorst, a nurse from Minnesota, fell 100 feet while she was hiking by herself and was seriously injured in the fall.
The 25-year-old thought she would die there near a trail in Arizona.
She wrote goodbye notes to her family and friends, saying it was “the end” to her mother. She didn’t have cell phone service and could not walk.
“I thought, if I do die, at least I died doing something that makes me happy,” she told Inside Edition.
Kornhorst suffered several spinal fractures, numerous cuts and bruises, and a broken nose.
After she spent the night on a ledge of a cliff, reported the St. George News paper last week.
Hildale-Colorado City Fire Chief Kevin Barlow told the paper: “She was about 200-feet down a drainage slot.” He added, “I can see how it would have looked like she could have gotten down there.”
“It’s very miraculous. It was a very, very good team effort,” he added.
Officials said that when Kornhorst regained consciousness, she found her wilderness emergency whistle and blew loud enough for a search team to hear her.
A GoFundMe was set up for her recovery. More than $10,000 has been raised as of Thursday.
“Amber’s overall appearance and bruising are greatly improved since last week, she is still dealing with several medical issues, mostly neurological, related to her spinal injuries,” the page says.
There is a lesson in all of this, Barlow said.
“Always take a hiking partner and know the terrain. Go prepared – even if it’s a short hike – go prepared for an overnight stay,” he said.
He said 30 people were involved in the search and rescue.