A 20-year-old student at SUNY New Paltz slipped off a cliff and plummeted 150 feet to her death while hiking with friends, police and school officials said Tuesday.
Katherine Vollmer and some of her classmates at the university in upstate New York went exploring old cement caves and trails in Hasbrouck Park on Monday evening — and got lost, eventually finding themselves at the edge of a cliff, authorities said.
The “unsanctioned hiking group” began walking along the precipice in the hopes of returning to their vehicles.
Around 9:50 p.m., the young woman lost her footing and fell, according to the Kingston Police Department.
The area she dropped down to was “only accessible by an experienced rope team,” police said.
“Due to the lack of light and poor weather conditions, it was decided that the recovery of the student would have to wait until daylight,” cops said.
When a rescue team found Vollmer on Tuesday morning, it was determined she had “suffered severe trauma from the fall” and she was pronounced dead at the scene.
New Paltz president Donald Christian, who identified the student in a statement Tuesday, said she was a visual arts major who had transferred to the school from Monroe Community College this fall, according to the Daily Freeman.
“We extend our deepest sympathy to Katherine’s family and friends and to the students, faculty and staff who knew her,” Christian said.
The Rochester native appeared to be an avid hiker, according to her social media accounts.
A picture she posted to Facebook in September shows her beaming atop a boulder in the Adirondacks’ Cascade and Porter Mountains.
In her Twitter profile photo, she leans against a warning sign on a mountain in what appears to be Iceland.