PA rocks win this round..
PA rocks - 1
AT hiker - 0
Lebanon man falls off slope near trail
By Al Winn
June 24, 2004
A Lebanon man was in fair condition in Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center yesterday after a fall Sunday night from rocks near the Appalachian Trail in Bethel Twp., Berks County.
Phil Hillman, 26, of the 900 block of Cumberland Street, was scrambling up a steep incline with friend Eddie See, 26, of Lebanon, on rocks about a quarter-mile west of state Route 501 and about 100 yards south of the trail.
"He went to grab a tree branch, and it gave way," said Rob See, Eddie See's brother. Eddie See is out of town this week, but Rob See said his brother called him on his cell phone shortly after he climbed down to where Hillman had fallen.
Hillman was listed in critical condition Monday at the medical center.
By the time he called his brother, Eddie See had already called 911. Emergency crews were letting themselves down the steep mountainside with ropes by the time Don Youngblood, a volunteer who maintains the Route 501 Appalachian Trail shelter, happened on the scene.
Youngblood described the area, which is close to the popular Kimmel Lookout as "extremely rugged and heavily wooded." He said the mountainside, which overlooks Camp Swatara, is characterized by a series of rock terraces rather than a single cliff.
Rescuers carried Hillman down to an ambulance parked on Fort Henry Road, Youngblood said.
The ambulance then took Hillman to a Life Lion helicopter that flew him to the medical center.
Kimmel Overlook is about 1/4 mile trail south of Route 501. Easy access from the road, and a big party place. The articles aren't real clear, but I wonder if this guy was really a hiker. He's lucky he's not on permanent vacation.
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