Climber falls 100 feet, lives to tell

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DENVER, CO - A college student in Colorado fell nearly 100 feet off a cliff and survived.

Maggie Michael was studying rare plants when she lost her footing.

She had to scream for 30 minutes, before her team found her.

Howard Nathan asked her what went through her mind.

(Maggie Michael, Fell Off Cliff) "I just prayed, 'Jesus, be with me.' And in that moment, I saw like two bald eagles."

Her faith kept her calm.

(Maggie Michael, Fell Off Cliff) "I was holding onto my necklace really hard. I have a crucifix and a Saint Dominic."

After falling down the side of a canyon, tumbling some 100 feet on Monday.

(Maggie Michael, Fell Off Cliff) "I could see my jeans were cut, and that there was blood."

CSU student Maggie Michael, a future wildlife biologist was cataloging the rare "Aletes Humilis," for the nature conservancy. She was 30 minutes north of Fort Collins. The Aletes grows on cliffs.

(Maggie Michael, Fell Off Cliff) "I was pretty close to the edge and a rock went out from under my foot, so I lost my footing."

Maggie tried stopping her tumble by grabbing at rocks.

(Maggie Michael, Fell Off Cliff) "And then I went over a 30 foot edge, and so I did a 30 foot free fall."

She landed on a ledge, but her momentum kept her going.

(Maggie Michael, Fell Off Cliff) "And I kind of like hit and immediately flipped over."

She had tumbled another 70 feet. Another 2 feet more and she would've suffered an even worse fall.

(Maggie Michael, Fell Off Cliff) "If I didn't land exactly where I did, I would've gone over the next cliff, which was well over 200 feet."

Walking out was impossible.

(Maggie Michael, Fell Off Cliff) "After a few steps, my vision just got really hazy and then black. And I was like, 'well, that's probably not good.'"

Hours later, she was in Poudre Valley Hospital, lucky to be alive and appreciating her rescuers.

(Maggie Michael, Fell Off Cliff) "They were just so kind, and I won't ever forget them."