Hiker's GoPro Captures Terrifying Moment She Plunges Down 50ft Waterfall
Heather Friesen broke 10 ribs, suffered a collapsed lung and fractured her shoulder blade when she lost her footing at the edge of a cliff.
The 27-year-old was on a trip with a group of mates when she stopped at the top of a waterfall on the Ka'au Crater Trail in Hawaii. But just seconds later, she tumbles down the side of the cliff, plunging into the fast-flowing water below.
Footage from the GoPro she was wearing at the time has now been released.
In the tense clip, Heather can be heard screaming in pain as she tries to scramble across the river to safety.
A man then rushes to her aid and pulls her out of the water.
Heather, a beach volleyball player, spoke about the shocking incident on the 'In the World of Female Sports' podcast.
She said: "The hike has waterfalls and we were on the first waterfall and I was up at the top trying to look over the edge and I got too close and I ended up slipping.
"You can see there's little trickle of water that was in the shadow that I didn't really see."
Looking back at the accident, Heather said she felt as though 'time slowed down' as she fell down the cliff edge.
Heather was airlifted to hospital and said all she could think about was her Christian beliefs and her friends from church.
She added: "When I was on the helicopter being airlifted out, it was the most peaceful moment of my life.
"I kept repeating to myself, 'God's got me, I'm going to be OK' and that I'm going to play volleyball again."
But whereas some may have felt sorry for themselves after suffering such a hard fall, Heather said she feels very lucky and that 'the fall that changed my life forever'.
She explained: "I found out there had been others before me who fell from the same spot and died, and I know that God saved my life that day."
A year after the fall, she echoed these sentiments in an emotional Instagram post.
It read: "A year ago today marks both the worst day of my life and the best day of my life. Because I was shown God's love in incredible ways that forever transformed me.
"He saved me from death and has renewed my mind to see a world where God is my number one, and absolutely nothing comes before him.
"He has changed my life in the past year. So, I thank God for this accident. Each and every day."
Featured Image Credit: Instagram