Hiker dies in 150-foot fall from waterfall overlook on Blue Ridge Parkway, NPS says

A 61-year-old hiker died when she tumbled off a waterfall overlook along the Blue Ridge Parkway in western North Carolina, according to the National Park Service.

Nancy Sampson was visiting the park from Greer, South Carolina, when the incident occurred around 12:15 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 23, park officials said. The overlook is near milepost 361, about 130 miles northwest of Charlotte.

“Dispatch operators received a report of a female who had fallen down a steep cliff at Glassmine Falls Overlook,” park officials said.

“Rescuers were able to locate Sampson approximately 150 feet below the overlook. Her body was recovered.”

Details of what led to the fall were not released.

Photos shared by Reems Creek Fire Department show Sampson was found below a rock wall that sits atop a steep cliff.

A “distraught family member” was at the scene, according to the Trauma Intervention Program of Western North Carolina.

Glassmine Falls is “a tall skinny waterfall” that is notorious for being difficult to see from the overlook, the National Park Service says.

“Seeing the waterfall requires a bit of luck, ... as this ephemeral falls only flows after periods of rain. During drier weather it will slow to a trickle or even dry up completely,” the Blue Ridge Parkway reports.

“The waterfall and surrounding land is privately owned. ... There is no public access to the waterfall. But the view from the overlook after a good rain is impressive — even better if you bring a pair of binoculars.”

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