Mt Warrawolong in the Watagan State Forest. Photo Wikimedia
A teenager's survival from an 80-metre cliff plunge in
NSW's Hunter Valley is "mind-boggling".
The 17-year-old and a group of friends were trying to get
into a dance party in Watagan State Forest, 20 kilometres
west of Lake Macquarie, on Saturday night when he fell down
the sheer rock face about 10.30pm on Saturday.
Emergency services and local volunteers abseiled down the
cliff about 4am and spent the rest of the night with the
He was winched to safety about 10.30am and flown to
Newcastle's John Hunter Hospital with broken bones and
suspected internal injuries and is in a serious but stable
"I don't know how he has survived, and the doctors and the
paramedics are saying the same thing," said a spokesman for
the Westpac Rescue Helicopter.
Acting Superintendent Murray Lundberg said the teenager's
survival was "mind boggling".
"I haven't got words to describe his fortunate luck," he
He said the teenager and his mates were camping in the forest
when they came across the dance party and were denied entry.
The youth apparently thought he could get into the function
from around the back, through the bush, with no lights and no
knowledge of the terrain, "and he's just fallen off the side
of a cliff".
A number of trees had to be chopped down before the teen
could be winched aboard the helicopter.
It's understood the boy was trying to get into Solstium
Shadows - A Winter Solstice Bush Gathering.
The two-day rave was being held at a site off Rope Road, in
the heart of the forest.