BRISBANE, Australia — A South Korean backpacker was rescued Thursday after falling from a mountain and spending six nights stranded in steep Australian wilderness. She was suffering from dehydration and exposure but was relatively unscathed, officials said.
Joohee Han, 25, was last seen at a supermarket in the town of Tully in tropical Queensland state on Thursday last week before telling a friend by phone the following day she was going for a walk at nearby Mount Tyson in a national park that morning, Police Inspector Steve Kersley said.
She had hiked to the mountain's top and taken photographs of the view before slipping and falling unconscious for hours, Queensland Ambulance Services flight paramedic Hannah Gaulke said.
"She managed to crawl and scrape her way through the bushland, which was really tough terrain," Gaulke said.
Han became stuck after reaching a rocky waterfall, where she waited for six days before being reached by rescuers.
"She couldn't actually proceed further and had no way to get back out," Gaulke said.
She had been missing for five days before friends reported her missing on Wednesday and a search was launched, Kersley said.
Her shouts for help were heard on Saturday by a member of the public, who only informed police on Thursday after learning of the search.
She was found on Thursday by soldiers and police who cut through dense forest to reach her, Kersley said.
"Six days is a long time to be lost in the bush, particularly when you've got no bush skills," Kersley told reporters. "She's done well to survive."
She was winched from the forest by a rescue helicopter, which took her to Tully, where she was assessed at a hospital.
She was wearing long trousers, a long-sleeved shirt and had a raincoat that helped her keep warm, Kersley said.