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After overnight delay, injured hiker rescued from Old Rag Mountain in Shenandoah Park

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A man who was injured on Old Rag Mountain in the Shenandoah National Park Saturday was rescued Sunday afternoon by a helicopter after park rangers had stayed with him overnight, providing treatment and medication.

Art Webb (Photo: WJLA)

The hiker, Art Webb had spent a long cold night on the side of a mountain in the Shenandoah National Forest, his ankle shattered after the rock climber fell Saturday evening.

"I knew right away that I was falling,” he says. “I just saw like dangling down there.”

The temperatures dropped into the 30s as Webb waited for the sun and chopper to come. But dense fog below didn't make it easy.

Eventually, pilot Ken Burchell found a way to the top. Half the mountain was shrouded in cloud and the other half was open. Unfortunately, the victim was right on the edge of the two. It forced them to have to go right up to the edge of the mountain side and hover next to the mountain just outside the clouds.

The fancy flying did the trick and Webb was hoisted aboard.

But then another problem. The rescue took so long to pull off, the eagle was low on fuel.

So Webb got a little more help. Fairfax police flew him the rest of the way to Fairfax Inova, where Webb is recovering from the first of many surgeries to come.

“I was lucky that I was with the people I was with,” he says. “This close to a great hospital. It could have been way worse.”

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