Waitress dies after fall at popular hiking spot in the New Territories

A popular pot hole at Ping Nam stream. Picture: Facebook via Hong Kong Hiking Meetup 香港遠足覓合

A hiker posing for photos in a popular Hong Kong hiking spot in the New Territories died yesterday after slipping on a rock and falling into a pool below, according to reports.

The tragedy — at least the third hiking-related fatality in the past six months — occurred at about 4:40pm yesterday at the location commonly known as Shek Pan Tam or Ka Lung Tam, a scenic spot northeast of Pat Sin Leng Country Park popular for its potholes and rock pools.

According to hk01, the victim, a 42-year-old waitress surnamed Huen from Kwun Tong, began hiking alone from Luk Keng at about 4pm and joined up with two other hikers, a 60-year-old man surnamed Fung and a 34-year-old woman surnamed Tse. The group made their way toward the area around the top of the Ping Nam stream.

At Shek Pan Tam, while group posed for photos, Huen lost her footing on slippery rocks and fell about three meters into a two-meter deep pool. She hit her head on the rocks and lost consciousness.

According to Apple Daily, her fellow hikers immediately called emergency services, who rescued the woman and airlifted her to the hospital where she was declared dead.

Though the terrain is not considered particularly challenging for hikers, Chung Kin-man — a veteran mountaineer and the first Hongkonger to reach seven continental summits including Mount Everest — warned that rocks in the area could become dangerously slippery, 

Speaking to Apple Daily, he advised people to wear non-slip footwear, even when the weather has been dry.

A popular weekend hobby for many Hongkongers, hiking on the territory’s more than 80 trails has, on occasion, lead to fatal accidents.

A 48-year-old married woman fell to her death in November from a location known as “Suicide Cliff” on Kowloon Peak, a tragedy that followed close on the heels of a hiking death at the challenging “Dog Teeth Range” trail on Lantau island.

The government in January released a list of 16 “high risk” spots which it suggested should be avoided, though several sites on the list remain popular destinations.

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