Russian Tourist Falls to Death at Ein Gedi Nature Reserve

50-year-old falls into deep chasm while hiking with daughter in particularly difficult passageway.

A Russian tourist fell to her death Saturday while hiking with her 17-year-old daughter in the Judean Desert.

The family was in Israel for the 18th Maccabiah Games; the woman's husband is on Russia's judo team.

The mother and her daughter were walking along an unmarked path near Ein Gedi, toward to Arugot Stream, when the woman slipped and fell down a 100-meter incline.

The daughter called park rangers, who treated her for mild dehydration and began searching for the mother. The Israel Air Force's elite rescue unit 669 recovered her body.

"The tourists risked their lives by walking on unmarked paths," said Dudi Greenbaum, the director of the Ein Gedi nature reserve. "They took shortcuts through the ledges, which was criminally negligent and foolish."

The head of the Ein Gedi rescue unit, Manu Barak, said hikers must use only marked paths, aided by a map, and should not take shortcuts.